Two watercolour books kept by an English schoolboy, Henry Moore (born 1831), between the ages of fourteen and seventeen.more...
They are exceptional not for orthodox artistic merit, though they are fine (and sometimes compelling) examples of British naive art, but for their depiction of some of the minutiae of provincial domestic life. Henry was evidently an observant adolescent, who, in addition to making painstaking portraits of his family and views of his local surroundings, recorded such charming details as the pattern on the bedroom carpet at home, a flycatcher’s nest tucked into an iron gate-hinge and the elaborate icing on a traditional English ‘Twelfth Cake’.
A child of the English Midlands, Henry Moore was son of a canal agent at Stone in Staffordshire, a small town on the Trent and Mersey Canal, just South of Stoke on Trent and the Potteries. Many of the best images in his notebooks are of details of the Stone Navigation Office, suggesting the family lived on site, and he includes a fine study of the red brick and slate roofs of the rear of the office, and views of the cart shed, the cow house, the flower garden gate, the strong room, the check office, canal bridges, factory chimneys and a nearby windmill. There are also full- and double-page images of the town and its neighbouring buildings, among which the imposing red brick workhouse is outstanding. He also takes a boy’s interest in boats and trains, with two typical canal boats and a railway engine.
He makes portraits of his younger siblings, girls and boys in contemporary dress and takes pleasure in recording possessions at home: ‘mama’s opal bottle’, ‘mama’s bread-pan’, ‘mama’s great [Staffordshire] jug’, a piano, a Christmas plum pudding, candlesticks, brushes, a mother-of-pearl bookmark and several domestic fabric patterns. There are also records of trips further afield: with boats on the Severn and Mersey, the organ at Worcester, while an intriguing sequence shows domestic details of a particular house in Calthorpe Street, [Bloomsbury, London], with a parlour and bed, carefully depicted.
He was sent to boarding school at Bromsgrove, another canal town some 60 miles away in neighbouring Worcestershire, where he attended the Free School, then undergoing a tercentenary rejuvenation under pioneering schoolmaster John Day Collis (see Oxford DNB). Here, Moore made views of the new school buildings and of the church from the school playground. According to the school records he seems to have been a model student, winning a prize every year and earning a scholarship to Oxford, where he went up to Worcester College in 1849. He took both a BA and MA, became a fellow in the course of 15 years spent at Oxford. He apparently then became a cleric in London.
Moore also includes numerous imaginative scenes, usually rather more crudely drawn than those from life: many are of soldiers in uniform and several are of circus performers. He clearly had access to books too, and there are copies of scenes from Francis Edward Paget’s Hope of the Katzekopfs; Or, the Sorrows of Selfishness. A Fairy Tale (1846), Dickens’s Martin Chuzzlewit (1843), Moule’s English Counties (1837), Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar and Hamlet, Shaw’s Travels (1746 and several later editions) and the ‘Panorama of the Battle of Sabraon’ (exhibited 1846, and perhaps seen either in the flesh or via published engravings). .see full details
First edition, a rare and unusual children’s book, with fine engravings after the sixteenth-century drawings by Giuseppe Porta (known as ‘Salviati’).more...
‘Lewis developed into one of the most prolific, skilled, and versatile printmakers of his time. He was commissioned by William Young Otley to reproduce master drawings for the three-volume work The Italian School of Design, published between 1808 and 1823, and he engraved after works by such prominent contemporary artists as Sir Thomas Lawrence, Thomas Girtin, Franz Winterhalter, Sir Edwin Landseer, Richard Bonington, and J. M. W. Turner’ (Oxford DNB)
The subscribers list includes Francis Douce, William Young Ottley, Sir Thomas Lawrence, Samuel Rogers and Dawson Turner. The book was issued in two forms: on large paper with the illustrations as plates on India paper, and, as here, in chapbook form with illustrations and text combined. Both are are..see full details
A DELIGHTFUL BOOK, CERTAINLY ONE OF THE MOST CHARMING FRENCH MANUSCRIPTS WE HAVE ENCOUNTERED, A COLLECTION OF FAMILY SONGS AND ENTERTAINMENTS COMPOSED OVER A PERIOD OF 20 YEARS to 1808, memorialising a deep and sentimental friendship between two families with young daughters.more...
The compiler, Césaire Delaplanche and his wife Marie Adelaïde (Adèle), produced three daughters: Virginie, Heloïse and Pauline and father Césaire encouraged them to mark family occasions in song, a tradition which lasted at least the 20 years charted by the manuscript. The hundreds of original songs here were composed by the girls (presumably with their father’s help) for birthdays, New Year celebrations, feast days, weddings, visits, reunions and suppers and for recording gifts (an embroidered purse and tobacco case are mentioned), in honour of tutors, or in memory of deceased relations and friends. Each verse is transcribed in full, headed with the name of the popular tune to which they were sung: Femmes, voulez-vous éprouver?, Femme Sensible Entendre-tu le ramage, Pauvre Jaques, Sous les auspices de l’Hymen, to name but a few.
The story told by the manuscript is not without sadness. The death of the Delaplanche girls’ mother in 1805 drew the remaining family closer to their friends M. and Mme Loiseau and their daughter Julie. Indeed the book seems to be largely a homage to the kindness of the Loiseaus to the bereaved Delaplanches around that time, beautifully expressed in the allegorical frontispiece. Three young girls, Amitié, Estime and Reconnaissance (corresponding to Virginie, Heloïse and Pauline Delaplanche) offer a red book, La Clef des coeurs, to a bird (Loiseau) perched in a tree, who accepts it and takes the girls to a marble pavilion, the Temple du Bonheur & de la Vertu.
The verses are simple, sentimental and affecting, extolling the virtues of familial love and respect and reflecting the proverbial strength of filial respect in French society. One particular entertaiment, Hommage à la Reconnaisance. Ou Combat entre l’amitié & l’amour filiale, is emblematic of the manuscript as a whole, in expressing the gentle tension between friendship and family love. The songs are in no way pious, and the relative absence of religious imagery is striking. In fact, the impingement of the outside world on this subtle family drama is only lightly felt, and then only in ghosts of the French Imperial presence. The orderliness of the manuscript is disturbed in two places, tellingly. Seven leaves are cut out after p. 232, with the Index indicating that these contained a Chanson en l’honneur de l’Empereur (the Index entry itself is erased at an early date), while two further leaves (pp. 433-436) are on different paper, clearly substitutions, which bear another version of a chanson dedicated to Napoleon.
The implied narrative of the collection is brought to a close in 1808 with the engagement of Julie, the Loiseau daughter to a M. Dupézard. The two are married in October, accompanied by family songs and verses, in which the young groom is expected to participate (several of the last songs are his), and the manuscript closes with a valedictory poem by Césaire Delaplanche: ‘Il est fini mes bons amis...’.see full details
Not found in any of the usual online or printed sources, a delightful juvenile almanac, containing ten moral verses each with a vignette, engraved throughout.more...
Though the publisher Maillard de Bresson produced several other almanacs, and this one is quite typical of the genre, it seems to have eluded bibliographers, including Grand-Carteret. The Journal historique et littéraire (January 1756) gives a useful account of the publisher’s business: ‘M. Maillard de Bressan continue a vendre des caractéres, des desseins & vignettes, des armes à jour, des papiers peints, des sentences, des devises, & forme avec succès la suite de ses fables morales, & instructives pour la jeunesse de l’un et l’autre sexe. It fait des envois auc Communautés Religieuses & à toutes personnes chargées de l’éducation des enfants, ou à des Marchands qui s’adressant à lui. Il demeure actuellement au Collége de Cambray, pres de la rue Saint Jacques, à Paris’..see full details
First edition, rare, of this collection of children’s songs.more...
Ludovica Brentano, later baroness Desbordes (1787-1854), affectionately known as Lulu, was grand daughter of Sophie von La Roche (the first widely known German female novelist) and she became patron of the Grimm brothers; contributing two tales to their Kinder- und Hausmärchen..see full details
Les Animaux sensibles, intelligens et industrieux.more...
Les Enfans célèbres. pp. 154.
L’Antiquité: Mise a la Portée des Enfans. pp. 156,  (adverts).
Anecdotes Morales. pp. 156, .
Les Siècles de la France. pp. 160.
Le Siècle de Louis XIV, ou Vie des Personnages célèbres qui ont illustré ce siècle. pp. 160.
Six miniature volumes from Delbare’s Petit Bibliothécaire series for children. The individual volumes are very scarce (OCLC lists 2 or 3 of each); the Morgan library holds a comparable set of these 6 volumes in a miniature wooden bookcase. Ours retains part of its original box bearing the label of Alph[onse] Giroux, rue de Coq, Paris. Giroux was a well-known stationer and supplier of artists materials: he later became the sole supplier of Daguerre’s photographic apparatus. There were at least two other titles in the series: a Histoire de France, à l'usage de la jeunesse and a Nouvelle Histoire naturelle à l'usage de la jeunesse, both in 6 volumes..see full details
First edition in French of Blasche’s Der Papparbeiter, oder, Anleitung in Pappe zu arbeite (1811).more...
The 8 large folding plates depict a large array of miniature folded paper pieces: geometrical shapes, furniture and buildings. One of them is devoted to garden furniture in the oriental style, including a Chinese bridge..see full details
First edition in French of Tales of the Colonies, presentation copy, inscribed by the translator.more...
In this, the first of his two novels, Rowcroft drew on his own experience as an Australian settler. The work is in part a guide for prospective settlers and part a sensational tale of the hazards of pioneer-era Van Dieman’s Land: sheep-stealers, bushrangers, Aboriginal attackers, floods, snakes, eagles and wild cattle..see full details
First published in 1751, The Tutor’s Assistant became one of the best-selling mathematical books for over a century.more...
‘An incomplete listing comprises 276 editions, the last in 1885... The York editions, starting in 1797, were corrected by Thomas Crosby of that city’ (Wallis in Oxford DNB).’ Crosby also published a popular Key to the book, which itself ran to many editions.
‘This book is by far the most used of all school-books, and deserves to stand high among them’ (De Morgan, Arithmetical Books, 1847, 80, cited by Wallis). .see full details
James Speirs was a prolific evangelical speaker and publisher, whose printed output suggests he was an important figure in the Victorian Sunday School movement.more...
Sown in the spring-time collects 12 addresses aimed at a juvenile audience by Speirs and others (R.L. Tafel, Alfred J. Johnson, Samuel Teed and Charles A. Faraday) several on a theme of natural metaphor: “About Hares and Tortoises”; “The Horse and its correspondence”, “The Serpent and its correspondence” and “Trees”. .see full details
This immensely popular juvenile novel emphasises thrift and hard work through the character of Simon, a travelling salesman. It was published by La Société pour l’instruction élémentaire following a competition, with a prize of 1000 francs donated by an anonymous benefactor, for a work of no more than 250 pages in which were ‘tracés avec simplicité, précision et sagesse, le principes de religion chrétienne, de morale, de prudence sociale’, for the improvement of everyday town and country people. There were numerous subsequent editions in France, as well as translations into Spanish, Italian, German, Dutch, Greek and even Breton.
A nephew of the Jussieu brothers of botanical fame, Laurent Jussieu became director of police to the French minister for the interior in 1837..see full details
First edition of these scarce selections, in a very pretty contemporary binding.more...
Anacreon (570 - 488 BC) was one of the greatest Greek lyrical poets, particularly noted for his bacchanalian and amatory songs. The enduring popularity of his work rests largely on its universal themes of love, infatuation, disappointment and closely-observed comment on every-day life. Orger gives the original Greek verse, with an English prose translation at the foot of each page, for the benefit of “young students” (see his advertisement). Orger had previously translated Ovid’s Metamorphosis and published a curious horoscope of Napoleon Bonaparte..see full details