First edition of this collection on the purported conference of Luther with the devil on the subject of the mass, opening with a parallel Latin-French text rendering of his own account, taken from Luther’s 1521 Von der Winckelmesse und Pfaffenweihe (in the collected works in German, Wittenberg, 1558 vol.more...
7, f. 228). It has been attributed both to Bruzeau and the Abbé Cordemoy, and more than one issue appeared (with varying titles ) in 1673.
‘I awoke suddenly at midnight on one occasion, when Satan began to dispute with me in the following terms: “Listen to me,” said the fiend; “enlightened doctor, you have, as you know, celebrated mass privately nearly every day during the last fifteen years. What would you say if every one of these masses should prove to be an act of horrible idolatry? What if the body and blood of Christ had never been present, and you had adored, and had induced other to worship mere bread and wine?”’ (translation from the English edition of Michelet’s Life of Luther)..see full details
A copiously-illustrated homage to the Parisian landmark. An English translation appears at the end, concluding: ‘O Moulin Rouge! Thou dost dominate Paris, France, the world. Thy sails turn forever, for the breeze that moves them is the breath of the men who come to admire thee and to adore thee, Mill of Voluptuousness, Tower of Delight, Ark of Alliance, Vessel of Caresses, Star of the Evening, House of Pleasant Weariness, Palace of Languidness, Mystic Rose also, of which each petal is a moving sail capped by a bonnet, O Carnal Vase held towards all men who approach unto love ....’ You get the idea..see full details
Fragerolle had been Erik Satie’s co-pianist at the Chat Noir, composing most of the music for its revues. This is his delightful collection of old French Christmas carols, with ornaments to the wrapper, endpapers and text by Georges Auriol, also a member of the Chat Noir circle and friend of Satie. The wrapper, printed separately by Eugène Verneau and with trademark Auriol lettering, is particularly scarce..see full details
First edition of this classic belle époque survey of the culture of the café-concert and the circus.more...
This copy is number 52 of 100 on chine, with additional folding poster and plate at end, this copy also with an original signed ink and pastel drawing tipped to the front free endpaper inscribed: ‘Pour le bibliophile Edmond Fargeau. Hommage cordiale H.G. Ibels. Xbre 1910’. Ibels was one of the major commercial graphic artists of the period and a collaborator of Toulouse-Lautrec’s..see full details
A rare and unusual juvenile guide to Western knowledge dating from the opening of Japan to the West, which includes a world map, several alphabets, a glossary, and instructions for telling the time with a western pocket watch and for using a thermometer.more...
The work is copper-engraved throughout, still very unusual at this date in Japan.
The world map, covering 4 pages, is a curious reduction and misinterpretation of a British admiralty map (it attempts a reproduction of the original imprint: ‘Engaved by J. and C. Walker ... London—publized at de Admiralty 30th June 1858 under superintendence of Capn. Washington, R.N.F.R, ydrographer’) The projection is turned on its head so that Antarctica appears at the top. Australia appears twice, and New Zealand twice (once off the coast of Japan). The writing guide gives equivalences between Western and Japanese characters, syllables and numerals, with the Western characters (French and English) given typographically and in imitation of cursive script.
The pocket watch instructions reflect the fact that it was not until 1872 that the Japanese government officially adopted Western style timekeeping practices, including equal hours that do not vary with the seasons and, also the Gregorian calendar. Previously the Japanese had used an (unequal) temporal hour system that varied with the seasons; the daylight hours being longer in summer and shorter in winter. This system was abolished at the start of the, 1868, The Meiji Restoration, an event that restored practical imperial rule to Japan under Emperor Meiji. The Meiji Emperor announced in his 1868 Charter Oath that ‘Knowledge shall be sought all over the world, and thereby the foundations of imperial rule shall be strengthened.’ This modernization led to the the emergence of a western-style clock industry that replaced the typical Japanese clock which only had six numbered hours, from 9 to 4, which counted backwards from noon until midnight..see full details
First edition, rare, of the first systematic theoretical treatise on painting in France by a friend and patron of Nicolas Poussin.more...
No-one before Chambray had had attempted to establish the intellectual foundations of the art of painting, or the permanent and universal criteria for judging pictures. Earlier or contemporary writings such as those by Hilaire Pader, Abraham Bosse, Abbot de Marolles, Félibien or even Dufresnoy do not share either its systematic or quasi-doctrinal qualities.
‘[Fréart’s] ideas on art were crystallised in the Idée de la perfection de la peinture, published in 1662. Chambray intended this as a rule book for art and a guide for contemporary painters. He emphasized the importance of strict, rigorous geometry as truth in art. The Idée served as a manifesto against the sensual and the purely visual, as opposed to intellectual, in painting. Chambray was devoted to the art of Poussin, in which he saw the perfect realization of the classical ideal. He strongly criticized Michelangelo for what he considered extravagant and capricious compositions; he also condemned Rubens, Caravaggio, Tintoretto and Veronese for encouraging a libertine art’ (Grove).
The work refers extensively to Marcontonio Raimondi's engravings of Raphael’s Judgement of Paris, Massacre of the Innocents and Deposition from the Cross, even then described by him as ‘rares et curieuses’, and he recommends the reader furnish himself with copies of these prints in order to follow his argument. It considers in turn the five fundamental principles that the Ancients apparently observed, and that Chambray finds in Junius’ De pictura, as follows: the invention, the proportion, the couleur, the mouvements and the collocation. It begins with a glossary of terms: Estampe, Tramontains, Esleve, Esquisse, Attitude, Pellegrin.
Fréart de Chambray (1606–1676), a close friend of Nicolas Poussin and brother of his patron, sent the painter a copy in Rome and he was thanked in a letter in 1665: ‘I am delighted that you were the first one in France to have opened the eyes of those who until then had only seen through the eyes of others’. Fréart de Chambray was a major artistic influence at the court of Louis XIV and had already published in French works of Euclid Palladio, Vitruvius, Leonardo da Vinci. The Idée was translated into English by John Evelyn as An Idea of the Perfection of Painting in 1668.
This copy is from the collection of French novelist André Malraux (1901-76), with a pencil note to that effect..see full details
An elegant new year gift book, comprising an illustrated survey of the popular French rose varieties, notes on culture and cultivation and a collection of rose poetry, completed with a calendar for the year 1819. The finely engraved plates are after Pancrace Bessa, a pupil and collaborator of Henri Redouté, painting tutor to the duchesse de Berry, and from 1823, official painter at the Museum d’Histoire Naturelle (replacing Redouté). The book was reissued several times with added calendars for successive years. The varieties illustrated include: Grand cuisse de nymphe, Rose de Portland, Damas simple, Manteau d’Evêque and Rose Bichonne..see full details
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
An early manuscript version of a notorious libelle against the French royal mistress, which had been composed and published in London (1758-9) and suppressed on the instructions of the French government.more...
A vicious satire, highlighting Madame de Pompadour’s humble origins, the Histoire articulates the familiar anxiety over the power and influence of a woman at court. While not overtly pornographic, its theme is the profound immorality surrounding the court of Louis XV.
The author, Marianne-Agnès Pillement, a defrocked nun, is a most interesting figure, publishing several novels in Paris before being forced to flee to London where she made a living as a tutor to the children of the wealthy. The purpose of Histoire de Madame de Pompadour seems to have been blackmail. English, French and German editions appeared in 1758 and 1759 (it is not clear which came first) with London imprints though they may well have been printed abroad (ESTC hazards Leipzig, Holland and the Low Countries as possibilities for the several early editions). French agents in London were charged with the purchase and destruction of copies, though the number of distinct issues and editions suggests the publishers outwitted them. As always with such clandestine works, manuscripts were also a tempting option. Our example contains the full text (with numerous minor variations) together with some additional materials, including a version of Madame Pompadour’s will.
Loosely inserted is a mildly-plausible forgery of a Pompadour autograph letter dated 1749, accompanied by a much later expertise by the Paris autograph dealer Charavay declaring it “fausse”..see full details
Second edition, a reissue of the 1799 edition with a new title.more...
Middleton’s designs include several cottages ornés, typical of the contemporary Picturesque movement, substantial villas, a public bath, a court house, an observatory, greenhouses, an aviary, a ‘gothick chapel’ and tea houses in the form of a Chinese temple and a Turkish temple. ‘…Middleton adopted a manner of illustration that was peculiarly his own. The designs are etched in a nervous line that obscures smaller details but delineates significant features of the building design and surrounding scenery, but also contributes an uncommon liveliness and animation to the illustration as a whole. The plates are further distinguished by bright, sometimes garish color in in ocher, salmon, pale green, bright green and bright blue tints.’ (Archer, Literature of British domestic Architecture 1715-1842, 1985, 206.4 (1799 edition with identical plates).
Middleton trained in architectural draughtsmanship under James Paine, gaining admission to the Royal Academy in 1779, before being employed by Henry Holland around 1783. He superintended Holland’s works at Carlton House..see full details
A satirical lithograph, issued in the aftermath of the Paris siege, unfavourably comparing Napoleon III with his uncle Napoleon, who had been the subject of a similar anthropomorphic satire at the beginning of the century.more...
The original Napoleon print had depicted the victims of his successful ambitions in Europe and the territories he had conquered; this one shows his nephew, ‘Invasion III’, with the corpses of those who died for his ambitions. He wears a cloak made from a map of his principal defeats (Strasbourg, Sedan, Boulogne, Mexico) and a sash bearing names Cayenne, Lambessa and La Rocamarie (the first two being French penal colonies the last being the site of the miner’s revolt immortalised in Zola’s Germinal). His hat is the Napoleonic eagle with a beak full of lard..see full details
The celebrated life of a colourful swindler and impostor, first published in 1745 and reprinted numerous times.more...
This is one of two editions printed for Buckland, Bathurst and Davies in 1793. The final 5 pages contain a notable cant dictionary.
Carew fell in with a band of gypsies as a wayward young boy. “After a year and a half Carew returned home for a time, but soon after resumed a career of swindling and imposture, which saw him deceive people to whom he had previously been well known. Eventually he embarked for Newfoundland, but stayed only a short time. On his return to England he passed as the mate of a vessel, and eloped with the daughter of a respectable apothecary from Newcastle upon Tyne, whom he later married.
Carew soon returned to the nomadic life, and when Clause Patch, a Gypsy king or chief, died Carew was elected his successor. He was convicted of being an idle vagrant, and sentenced to be transported to Maryland. On his arrival he attempted to escape, but was captured and made to wear a heavy iron collar; he escaped again, and encountered some Native Americans, who removed his shackles. On departure he travelled to Pennsylvania. He was then said to have swum the Delaware River, after which he adopted the guise of a Quaker, and made his way to Philadelphia, then to New York, and finally to Boston, where he embarked for England. He escaped impressment on board a man-of-war by pricking his hands and face, and rubbing in bay salt and gunpowder, so as to simulate smallpox” (John Ashton, rev. Heather Shore in Oxford DNB).
This biography is variously attributed to Bampfylde Moore Carew himself, to Robert Goadby and also to his wife, Mrs. Goadby. .see full details
This rare and ephemeral booklet comprises one printed page of text followed by 13 full-page diagrams of cherub decorated Western clock faces with Japanese zodiac symbol notations. Each clock face is left blank besides the numerals, presumably for completion in manuscript by the student. It wasn’t until 1872 that the Japanese government officially adopted Western style timekeeping practices, including equal hours that do not vary with the seasons, (and, also the Gregorian calendar). Previously the Japanese had used an (unequal) temporal hour system that varied with the seasons; the daylight hours being longer in summer and shorter in winter. This system was abolished at the start of the, 1868, The Meiji Restoration, an event that restored practical imperial rule to Japan under Emperor Meiji. The Meiji Emperor announced in his 1868 Charter Oath that “Knowledge shall be sought all over the world, and thereby the foundations of imperial rule shall be strengthened.” This modernisation led to the emergence of a western-style clock industry replacing the typical Japanese clock which only had six numbered hours, from 9 to 4, which counted backwards from noon until midnight; (the hour numbers 1 through 3 were not used for religious reasons, being the numbers of strokes that were used by Buddhists to call to prayer). The count ran backwards because the earliest Japanese artificial timekeepers used the burning of incense to count down the time..see full details
A CAPACIOUS AND OUTLANDISH FRENCH LIVRE DE RAISON (COMMONPLACE BOOK), DENSELY WRITTEN IN IDIOSYNCRATIC FRENCH WITH A SERIES OF NAÏVE AND HIGHLY-COLOURED ILLUSTRATIONS OF HISTORICAL AND ANTHROPOLOGICAL FIGURES.more...
Anonymous in its surviving form (it has lost 44 preliminary pages through accident or deliberate removal) it still represents a rich and surprising store of contemporary popular culture. It combines practical wisdom (medical and household recipes, a calendar and a formulary of letters) and history (accounts and memorials of the events of the Revolution and Revolutionary Wars), to which are added an abundance of oracles, popular songs, verses, maxims, puzzles, jokes and a wonderful dictionary for the interpretation of dreams. A brief sampling of the many texts suggests that this will become a rewarding resource for the reconstruction of a particular vein of popular culture. Detection of political bias or intention is no easy matter: though the writer clearly regrets the bloodthirsty acts of the Revolution, celebrates the successes of Napoleon in the subsequent wars, and reproduces a republican hymn to George III of England, a dialogue between Napoleon and King George and poem on Waterloo. Quite who compiled this remarkable manuscript and where is a matter for research. The relatively neat and regular script is countered by chaotic grammar and spelling — words and phrases are frequently phonetic, perhaps bringing the reader close to contemporary speech patterns. The maker’s literacy is certainly pragmatic, suggesting he was perhaps an official or clerk, capable of making effective records but remaining refreshingly untouched by high literary culture. The bold and naïve illustration is in keeping with this. Colour, ornamentation and visual impact are to the fore, while proportion and perspective are in short supply and if we need to seek parallels or comparisons for the style, then they are best found in contemporary popular woodcuts and broadsides produced by printers such as Pellerin of the Imagerie d’Épinal. It is quite possible that a regional location will be revealed through study, but for now, all that can be said is that the manuscript s very unlikely to be Parisian or metropolitan. Subjects for the images include numerous memorial portraits of victims of the Revolution (including the princesse de Lamballe, those drowned in the Nantes massacre of 1793/4, the duc de Berry and Louis XVII) plus a series of character sketches of selected inhabitants of the world. Among the latter are found English peasants and burgers, natives of African Guinea, Egypt, Castille, Rome, Gascony, Brittany and Paris; stilt-walking shepherds of the Landes, a Dover housewife, a pair of hairy savages and a depiction of house in America (‘habitation de la merique’). Other images are emblematic and include two misogynistic portraits of ill-tempered women, tempered by some rather touching heart-shaped emblems of love, wisdom and marriage..see full details
First and only complete collected edition, a superb and handsome set completed with 2 volumes of Cook’s ‘Life of Ruskin’ (1911) uniformly bound (41 vols in all).more...
‘The edition was the outcome of twelve years work by Edward Tyas Cook and Alexander Wedderburn, although Cook completed the bulk of the editing. The aim of The Library Edition was to provide the complete works of Ruskin, both literary and artistic, in uniform volumes. The edition was undertaken by Messrs. George Allen, Ruskin's publishers. Illustrated by 820 wood blocks and 990 full-page plates with 120 facsimiles of MSS., the edition includes 269 plates of Ruskin's own drawings of which 200 had never before been published. Portraits of Ruskin are used as frontispieces to some of the volumes. The press work was carried out by Messrs. Ballantyne of Edinburgh, and the weight of type amounted to nine tons, whilst the printing ink weighed 1800lbs. Printed on hand-made, linen rag paper (about 87tons) with a double watermark of Ruskin's monogram and seal. The edition consisted of 2062 sets, of which 2000 were available for sale to subscribers for the full set. The first volume was published on 27 March 1903. George Allen did not live to see the completion of the edition dying on 5 September 1907, his children taking over the firm ... Cook and Wedderburn provide the standard reference work for Ruskin studies.’ (from the University of Lancaster’s Preface to their electronic edition).
‘The apogee of Ruskin's immediate influence was marked by the decision to publish a monumental Library Edition of his complete works in thirty-nine volumes, edited by E. T. Cook and Alexander Wedderburn, which appeared between 1903 and 1912. Although biographically reticent and presenting a liberal version of Ruskin (as did Cook’s entry in the Dictionary of National Biography), this became the foundation for future Ruskin scholarship’ (Oxford DNB)..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
An account of auction purchases of domestic goods by a Reverend Newcomb of Brandon from a Newmarket auctioneer, including garden furniture, kitchen implements, glasses, crockery and books Newcomb’s purchases total £61 5s and 11d, with the most expensive items an ‘Engine’ (£16 10s) and a brewing copper (£10, 7s 8d).more...
Newcomb bought 5 books: History of Turkey (2s 6d); the Works of St Cyril of Jerusalem; Burnet’s History and Theory of the Earth and Macclesfield’s Trial. He also took home a parrot cage (5s 6d)..see full details
First edition of an important early proposal for the popularisation of air travel by powered balloon.more...
The first powered balloon flight had been achieved by Henri Giffard in 1852, but the major challenge facing early aeronautical engineers was the application of steam power to lighter-than-air craft. Named the Explorateur aerien, Farcot’s proposed craft was a fish-like airship of 15 tons carrying capacity with fins and double propellors and a 5 horsepower engine. He suggested its use for both pleasure and scientific experiment. Eugène Farcot (1830-96) was involved in the early flight experiments and was a member of the pioneering Société aérostatique et metéorologique; he rightly predicted the revolution in both travel and society which could be brought about by powered air travel, writing about it both in fiction and non-fiction and he later achieved celebrity as the pilot of the Louis-Blanc, one of the balloons which broke the Paris siege in 1870. A clock-maker by profession he was perhaps best known to his contemporaries for his sophisticated and expensive clock mechanisms. .see full details
First edition of one of the most influential works of French garden theory in French.more...
Morel was the father of landscape gardening in France, best known for the Théorie des Jardins and for his work with the marquis de Giradin in the celebrated garden at Ermenonville, and later at Malmaison. Morel never travelled to England, but was clearly influenced by theories of landscape being developed there. The title here bears a quote from Milton: ‘In narrow room nature’s Whole Wealth, yea more / A heav’n on earth ...’ (Paradise Lost IV)..see full details