One of the most spectacular fruits of nineteenth-century Medievalism, with its elaborate chromolithograph interpretations of illuminated manuscripts, many with gold and silver inks. The text volume additionally contains a sequence of original photographic reproductions of prints by Wierix. Issued as a series of 70 individual numbers, the pagination of the plate volumes is very erratic, with numerous additional plates outside the main sequence and with some leaves having plates on both sides, others on just one. The appendix provides an historical and bibliographical key to the plates, listing manuscripts in mainly French and Italian libraries..see full details
A collection of children’s stories evidently written by a father (perhaps Herr Schmutzer, who’s stamp appears in each) for two young daughters.more...
Each volume is a separate story telling of the girls’ adventures around the world. The text is in German throughout and every page bears a large illustration. A terrifying insight into one early-twentieth century father’s idea of a family entertainment.
Das buch von den beiden Babys. [n.d. c. 1902]. Small 4to (206 × 165 mm), pp. , alternating text and drawings. A tale of parental neglect: a family outing on a steam train goes terribly wrong.
‘...Laurentia und Emerentia Stutzlmeier’. 1902. Folio (330 × 210 mm), ff.  (the last blank) of which 28 each bear text and a large drawing. Card wrappers, loose in cloth backed boards. The tale of two young sisters lost in the forest during a family picnic. Rescued from a wolf by a kindly hermit they embark on a series of miraculous adventures with a cartload of magic pears and a menagerie of animals. Reunited with their parents they return to the woods to find the hermit dying; they bury him and he is borne aloft by angels.
‘Die gar wundersame geschichte von den beiden Babys in der Techanei’. 1904. Folio (325 × 210 mm), ff. , of which 54 each bear text and a large drawing. Crudely sew in cloth-backed boards, uniform with the above. The father takes his daughters out on an excursion, but an encounter with a witch separates the girls from him. Kidnapped in the witch’s house, they elude her protective snake, toad and cat and escape in a paper boat. Reunited with their father they embark on a series of terrifying adventures under his protection: he slaughters all assailants with a pistol, sword and bare hands, leaving a trail of bloodshed. A return to a derelict house scattered with the skeletons of pets and family members begins a new chapter, before the trio return home in a magical amphibious horse-drawn cart.
‘Die Geschichte von die beiden Babys und die Reise um die Erde’. 1910. Folio (340 × 205 mm), ff. , of which 41 each have text and a large drawing. Cloth backed boards. In this final volume Herr Scmutzer oversteps the mark. Taking his young daughters on a round-the-world trip in a self-propelled car (Gibraltar, Africa, Egypt, Persia, China, Siberia, The North Pole) he indulges in the worst kind of xenophobic violence against most of the inhabitants of the known world, all in the interests of the protection of his daughters..see full details
A superb fashion album from the year of the Paris siege, with a great variety of dated designs showing the vogue for dresses emphasising a narrow figure with low sloping shoulders and skirts gathered extravagantly at the back with ribbons, tapes, ruches and ruffles.more...
Outdoor and walking dresses, evening dresses, hairstyles, headresses, veils, parasols, nightgowns, shoes and coats. Colours, especially for outdoor wear, tend towards darker palettes with deep greens, mauves and black in abundance.
Despite the Franco-Prussian war and the advance of the Germans on Paris, the city remained at the centre of the fashion world. The military realities of the Paris siege of that year impinge with one image of a rifleman (franc-tireur) of the Légion de la Seine (dated 25 August 1870) and the styles for 1871 exhibiting occasional military references with square cut coat pockets, brocades and frogging..see full details
A file of miscellaneous antiquarian notes in various hands, almost all concerning Shropshire families, churches, parishes and manors from the medieval period onward, and often apparently transcripts from Shropshire records.more...
Includes: an account of the borough of Bridgenorth, transcripts from the parish registers of Claverley (1568-1714), Lilleshall, Pontesbury, Alveley and others, and a bifolium with eighteenth-century transcripts from the registers of Cherbury. .see full details
Circular emblems known as mon or kamon held a similar function to family crests in European heraldry.more...
Applied to individuals, families, feudal shogunates and to the nation as a whole, their decorative emblems were usually incorporated into roughly circular forms. This unusual Meiji period album is a hierarchical register of kamon opening with the familiar red hinomaru sun emblem (adopted as the national flag in 1870), the flowers of the imperial family and the imperial chrysanthemum emblem, followed by those of the leading families and territories of Japan. Clearly a Japanese production, the added German manuscript text of the last part of the nineteenth-century, helps to date the album to the early years of the opening of Japan to European travellers and merchants. It perhaps served to interpret traditional Japanese family emblems for foreigners. Some of the captions to the shogunate kamon include the traditional numerical assessment of koku or feudal value, the units based originally on measures of rice on which their wealth was assessed..see full details
An extensive manuscript containing biographies of overseas residents and visitors to England, from the medieval period to the 1770s: it includes kings and queens, members of the nobility, clergymen, politicians, artists, musicians and criminals.more...
Evidently compiled over time (the second smaller volume may be the earlier) the collection is derived from various print and manuscript sources, which are often named. The smaller volume is apparently drawn from state and diplomatic papers and letters, while the larger is derived from a large range of printed works (Rapin, Frehenus, Moréri, Hawkins’s History of Music, several antiquarian cathedral and county histories, the Annual Register and various journals, including the Newgate Calendar).
The biographical entries, extending from just a few lines to some of several full pages include: Henri Estienne, Bernouilli, Helen and Judith (celebrated Hungarian conjoined twins exhibited in London in 1708), Erasmus, Rousseau, Lassus, Boerhaave, Geminiani, an African prince who appeared at the Theatre Royal in 1759, singer Signora Faustina, Handel, Theodore Gardelle (painter, enameller and murderer), Paolo Rolli, John Tradescant (a curious inclusion, as a traveller rather than an immigrant), the chevalier D’Eon (transvestite and spy), Peter the Wild Boy, Simon Pingano (forger), Bartholomew Rocque (agriculturalist), Emin Joseph Emin (army officer in the East India Company and Armenian nationalist), Domenico Angelo (fencing master), Joseph of Arimathea, Miles Coverdale, Leonard the Indian, a group of Cherokee Indians visiting London in 1730 and ‘Chitqua’ (Tan-Che-Qua, Chinese artist who worked in London 1769-72). In each volume, an alphabetical index has been added at the beginning, probably at the time of binding, on tabbed pages of paper watermarked 1804, but the major part of each volume appears to have been written earlier. Many pages are marked with a single vertical line and there are occasional entries ‘entered’, suggesting the text was reproduced somewhere else, or intended to be, but we are not aware of a printed equivalent.
Phillipps MS 13746, purchased 1849 from the Duke of Buckingham sale (Stowe 2120), where it was joined with another volume of historical portraits..see full details
An extended heraldic manuscript by Thomas Willement, heraldic researcher and author who was to become a major figure in the Victorian gothic revival as a stained glass artist.more...
It includes reasoned descriptions of arms and quarterings for: Lord Henry Thomas Howard Molyneux Howard (1819), Francis Rawdon Hastings, Earl of Moira (1819), Henry Nevile, Earl of Abergavenny (1819), Lord Viscount Curzon, Earl of Tyrconnel (1819), Henry Pelham Clinton, Duke of Newcastle, Percy of Northumberland, Russell Duke of Bedford, Hugh Duke of Northumberland, Darell of Calehill, Foljambe, Mrs Mostyn (Madame Piozzi), Montagu-Cholmeley and the Knyvett and Stafford Cooke families. It also includes pedigrees of the Kings of England (in reverse from William IV, crowned 1830 to William the Conqueror) and a genealogies of the families of Salisbury (from the time of Charlemagne) and Cholmeley.
Thomas Willement was an important figure in the Victorian gothic movement and is credited with the revival of the art of stained glass in England, lost since the reformation. Born in 1786 to a heraldic coach painter, he became heraldic painter to King George IV and later Queen Victoria and executed stained glass for more than 1000 buildings (including St George’s Chapel, Windsor). He collaborated with Pugin on several projects. In 1845 he bought the Priory and Church at Davington (Faversham) then in a dire state, with the church having been used for lambing and for storage of smuggled goods, and set about restoration. Willement, was the author of many books, died aged 85, on 10 March, 1871, and is buried in a vault at Davington Church..see full details
An interesting manuscript prospectus of a large and still-unpublished account of the French revolution.more...
François-Jean Baudouin had been a printer and bookseller to the Assemblée nationale in the revolutionary period, later becoming a journalist and publisher. He evidently wrote a long first hand account of the politics surrounding the Revolution, which remained unpublished. It was apparently in the hands of one Tacheron, a doctor to the XI Légion at the opening of the nineteenth century, who wrote this manuscript prospectus of it, transcribing part of the introduction and giving a detailed précis or analyse of its 16 chapters. He notes that it would run to some eight or ten octavo volumes, probably suggesting he was intending to publish it. In the event it seems never to have been published and since the whereabouts of the manuscript is now unknown, this 43-page summary is witness to a major work of Revolutionary history.
‘François-Jean Baudouin, imprimeur-libraire, né à Paris en 1759, mort en 1838. Elu député suppléant du tiers aux Etats Généraux, il dut à cette circonstance d’être nommé imprimeur de l’Assemblée Nationale, privilège qu'il conserva jusqu’en 1809. Il fut aussi propriétaire du Logographe, journal dont il envoyait tous les jours le premier exemplaire à Louis XVI... Il publia en 1810, un Projet de règlement pour l’imprimerie et la Librairie...’. Larousse II, 387..see full details
A beguiling anonymous illustrated manuscript with painted miniatures on vellum.more...
The text is a poem by French poet of Greek and Franco-Levantine origin, Chénier (1762-94) who perished under the guillotine during the Terror. Praised as a precursor of the Romantics, his work was rediscovered and published during the nineteeth century. His exotic subjects, coupled with his tragic end made him a favourite among devotees of the decadent..see full details
A typical Victorian handwriting copybook, devoting a page to each letter of the alphabet, with a single sentence, phrase or word repeated over several lines, the text of varying size.more...
‘All thy commandments are righteousness’; ‘Be ye angry and sin not’; ‘Fulminate’; ‘Knowledge is Power’, ‘Mathematician’; ‘Obrometer’, ‘Vice is attended with sorrow’; ‘X begins no word in the English language’. The sequence is broken in two places, with 2 pages of elementary mathematical exercises, and the last page is signed ‘William Blundell June 29th 1868 in Sussex’..see full details
An autograph copy of a classic text of French orientalism, made by the author for his wife and inscribed ‘À Etelka, ma femme bien-aimée, qui est pour moi toute la splendour du monde et toute la poësie.more...
Franz Toussaint. Mai 1936.’
Le Jardin des caresses. Traduit de l'arabe, consisting of Toussaint’s interpretation of Moorish poems, partly anonymous, written in tenth-century Spain, first appeared serially in the Mercure de France and Revue de Paris in 1909-1911, then published together in 1911 and reprinted and translated in numerous editions throughout the twentieth century (the Golden Cockerel Press printed an English edition in 1934). Its numerous short stanzas, whose titles include: ‘Les Seins, les yeux, et la chevelure’, ‘Les oiseaux de la mosquée’, ‘La Sultane de l’amour’, ‘Al Maghreb’, ‘Les Sorciers’, ‘L’Astronome’ and ‘La Volupueuse’proved especially suitable for musical settings and so the work also found huge popularity in song.
Toussaint is an interesting figure, both a respected scholarly translator of Arabic and other eastern languages, and a director of silent films, the best-known of which is Inch’Allah of 1922. This appealing little manuscript was evidently made by the author as a gift for his second wife, Turkish-born Adelaïde Etelca Stefania Braggiotti, who he married in 1925. .see full details
Superb examples of the late-nineteenth-century medieval revival and specimens of the trade in painted miniatures imitating (innocently or not) the manuscript painting of the Middle Ages.more...
These miniatures can been attributed to Ernesto Sprega, restorer of the Raphael frescoes in the Vatican, or another facsimilist in his circle (cf. Manuscript Illumination in the Modern Age, ed. S. Hindman et al., 2001, pp. 120-22). The borders and the frames of the miniatures are bravura imitations of ornate Italian models of the late fifteenth- or early sixteenth-century, perhaps even recalling the lavish and gaudy borders strewn with gold and brightly-coloured, fleshy foliage produced by Liberale da Verona (c. 1445-1530).
Whether these are pastiches or forgeries intended to deceive unwary buyers is a question for discussion. Certainly there are numerous examples of similar creations (notably by the Spanish Forger) sold in Europe to foreign (usually American) buyers in search of authentic medieval manuscript cuttings, and it is interesting that the artist here has offset the miniatures to one side of the leaf, leaving a blank space (approximately 10mm. wide) on one vertical edge, giving the impression to the casual observer that these are singletons, taken from a book, while in fact the vellum shows no signs of having ever been bound into a volume.
The subjects of the miniatures:
Leaf 1: recto, Christ entering Jerusalem on a donkey; verso, Christ seated in a hilly landscape surrounded by children, one of whom sits on his lap, and another holds a lamb.
Leaf 2: recto, Christ surrounded by the Apostles in a wooded landscape; verso, Christ before his followers accepting a golden ring from a richly dressed Jew and a young man (some rubbing to young man's face on verso and scratch through corner of miniature).
Leaf 3: recto, The Scourging of Christ (some minor paint flaking to base of miniature); verso, St. Paul cutting off Malchus' ear in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Leaf 4: recto, Christ before followers exposing his wound to Thomas; verso, the Descent from the Cross (small scratch to latter).
Leaf 5: recto, bearded man with followers kneels as God appears as a bearded face in upper left-hand corner of miniature; verso, the same man standing before a medieval town gate surrounded by townspeople..see full details
A French country curate’s gardener’s guide.more...
In two parts: the first an alphabetical sequence consisting mainly of observations on the cultivation and conservation of various fruits and vegetables together with instructions for pruning and grafting; the second a calendar of tasks for the months. To this is added an index and various supplementary notes. The plants are what we might expect of a Norman garden artichokes, asparagus, spinach, beetroot, herbs, lettuces (50 varieties) rhubarb, rocket, melons and vines, and there a couple of interesting chapters on different soil types. There are hints on pest control and notices of just a few flowering plants: hortensia (hydrangea), roses and fuchsia.
M. Maurier identifies himself as ‘bachelier en théologie of the village of Gancourt-Saint-Étienne in the Pays de Bray region of Normandy..see full details
A design portfolio, mostly dating from the last years of the Great War: early work by a progressive young female designer, Winifred How, made at a so-far unidentified British college of art and design.more...
The formal and informal elements of the collection, which includes many superb pencil and wash designs together with fabric and wallpaper samples, bridge the Arts and Crafts movement of the early century and a striking emergent modernism.
These spectacular designs are mostly formal exercises in pattern design, with an emphasis on the construction of repeating patterns, interchange, and counterchange (designs in which a certain colour of a motif and its ground are reversed in another part of the design). Also included are a number of more experimental designs, strikingly modernist, usually single panels, some elements of which are incorporated into the formal exercises. In several cases the time taken to make each sheet is noted (usually several hours), reflecting the commercial background of this formal training. The manuscript captions provide a key to each assignment, and some of the designs are marked with tutor’s comments (’good’, ‘beautiful’, excellent’, ‘all units too separate’, ‘good set but panel decoration has a sense of dropping at the centre’, ‘you want to try and get your units to unite’ etc).
She had evidently been a pupil of the progressive Margaret Morris dance movement. As a designer she provided musical notation and script for Eleanor and Harry Farjeon’s First (and Second) Chap-book of Rounds (1919 and 1920) and in the early 20s she contributed to the progressive magazine Form edited by Austin Osman Spare and W.H. Davies and Spare’s Golden Hind. It is likely she married in 1921. A letterpress flyer found among her designs here also provides a neat context for How’s workis for a benefit exhibition at Welwyn Garden City for the Women’s Committee for the Relief of Miner’s Wives & Children, at which pictures by Brangwyn, Nash, Rothenstein, Spencer and Fry were on sale..see full details
Folio (335 × 210 mm), pp. , plus several blank leaves at end. Text in manuscript, full-page illustrations in crayon or pastel. Lightly browned throughout, fragile at edges with minor fraying, all the result of poor quality paper. In original cloth backed notebook. Binding rather worn. A handsome chanson manuscript, anonymous but for the decorative initials 'J.B'. The songs include: 'Le Pigeon blessé', 'Sous les Platanes', 'Carmen', 'Chagrins d'Amour', 'Juanita', 'La Femme est un jouette' and 'Mort pour la France'.
II. Émile LEBLOND. Dijon, c. 1904.
Manuscript, 4to (214 × 170 mm), pp. 1-12, 17-98, 101-102, 105-270, 280-320, several blanks at rear. Evidence of 3 leaves removed, perhaps by the maker. Numerous drawings in ink and crayon, decorative headings. Original cloth notebook. Rather rubbed. An illustrated chansonnier made by a soldier of the First Artillery, stationed at Dijon. This is an especially full example which gives some unusual details as to its making: Leblond occasionally records the number of weeks he has been in service and there is evidence of carbon tracing, demonstrating the use of illustrations from popular journals in making these chansonniers. The songs include: 'Berceuse militaire', 'L'Africaine', 'Chapeai bas devant la Marseillais', 'Vous êtes si jolie', 'Four frou' and 'Ma Ninette'.
III. Yvan LOREAU. Chemillé-sur-Seine, c. 1909.
Manuscript, small 4to (216 × 175 mm), pp. , 88, ruled paper. Drawings in ink and crayon. Original limp wrappers. Yvan Loreau writes on his title-page that this manuscript was made 'Sur le tour de France' and begun on 11th December 1909. Songs include: 'Voila la Parisienne', 'Le petit coeur de Ninon', 'Ah! Ma p'tit Lili', 'Le ruban bleu de l'hirondelle' and 'Pas sur la bouche'.
IV. Alexandre MOULLET, 'le gros bâtarde'. Valence, 1913-14.
Manuscript (on squared paper), 4to (222 × 170 mm), pp. . Drawings in ink and crayon, partially unfinished. Some thumbing and fraying, one leaf loose. Original half cloth notebook. An illustrated chansonnier made on the eve of the Great War for one Alexandre Moullet, picturesquely nicknamed 'le gros bâtarde', of the 5eme Régiment d'Artillerie lourde, 8ème batterie, at Valence (Drôme). Songs include: 'Les petites Toulonnaises'; 'Soldat vierge', 'Marins de Marseille', 'Coeur Crise', 'Sur la Riviera' and 'Le dernier Tango'.
V. REDON. Valbonne (Ain), 1921.
Manuscript on paper, small 4to (216 × 170 mm), pp. , plus numerous blanks at rear, numerous drawings in pencil, ink and crayon (a couple cut from newspapers or journals, decorative headings. Original half cloth notebook. Songs include: 'Tu voudrais me voir pleurer', 'La vals du pastis', 'Vous rendez tous les hommes fou' and 'Le train fatale'. One verse is subscribed 'Fait a la Valbonne le 12-12-21 une soiré de grand froid'. .see full details