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  • Poems... new and enlarged edition. by ROSSETTI, Christina G. ROSSETTI, Christina G. ~ Poems... new and enlarged edition. London: Macmillan and Co, 1901.
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  • Fourteen Poems by C P Cavafy chosen and illustrated with twelve etchings by David Hockney translated by Kikos Stangos and Stephen Spender. by HOCKNEY, David. HOCKNEY, David. ~ Fourteen Poems by C P Cavafy chosen and illustrated with twelve etchings by David Hockney translated by Kikos Stangos and Stephen Spender. London: Editions Alecto Limited, [ 1966].
    First edition. An unnumbered artist’s proof copy from Edition A (which consisted of 250 numbered copies, plus 50 artist’s proof copies). The total edition was… (more)

    First edition. An unnumbered artist’s proof copy from Edition A (which consisted of 250 numbered copies, plus 50 artist’s proof copies). The total edition was of 550 bound copies and 120 loose sets of the plates only. Edition A was issued with an additional loose signed print ‘Cavafy II’, sometimes framed by owners and not present in this copy. The very rare publisher’s prospectus and an uncompleted order form are inserted at the rear. The plates are not edition stamped on the rear.
    ‘Cavafy wrote two kinds of poem — love and historical. The fourteen selected for this book are, with the exception of Caesarian, poems of homosexual love: short, unrhymed, deeply felt but totally unsentimental. They appear in a new, hitherto unpublished translation by Nikos Stangos and Stephen Spender... For several years Hockney has admired the work of Cavafy’ (from the Prospectus). The book was included by Neil McGregor in the BBC/British Museum’s History of the World in 100 Objects as an emblem of the struggle for human rights and sexual freedom ― homosexual acts in private were decriminalised in Britain only in 1967, the year Hockney’s startling collection appeared (McGregor, pp. 635-9).

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  • Encyclopédie comique ou Recueil anglois de gaietés, de plaisanteries, de traits d’esprit, de bons mots, d’anecdotes, de portraits, d’originalités, d’aventures, de naïvetés, de balourdises, de calembourgs et de pensées graves et sérieuses. Version libre de l’anglois. by BERTIN, Théodore-Pierre. BERTIN, Théodore-Pierre. ~ Encyclopédie comique ou Recueil anglois de gaietés, de plaisanteries, de traits d’esprit, de bons mots, d’anecdotes, de portraits, d’originalités, d’aventures, de naïvetés, de balourdises, de calembourgs et de pensées graves et sérieuses. Version libre de l’anglois. Paris: chez l’Editeur, [n.d., 1800].
    [uniform with:] Les Rieurs anglais, ou Supplément a l’Encyclopédie comique, traduction libre de l’anglais. Paris: Marchand, An X [1801/2]. 2 vols bound together, pp. [4],… (more)

    [uniform with:] Les Rieurs anglais, ou Supplément a l’Encyclopédie comique, traduction libre de l’anglais. Paris: Marchand, An X [1801/2]. 2 vols bound together, pp. [4], viii, [4], 132; [4], 156, [4],20, including half-titles, plus engraved frontispiece to each volume.

    4 vols bound in 2, 12mo (175 × 95 mm), partially uncut. Later red straight grain quarter morocco, spines elaborately gilt (by Champs-Stroobants Sr). Excellent copies.

    First edition. A rare collection of comic extracts translated or abridged from English authors including: Shakespeare, Gay, Johnson, Milton, Sheridan, Fielding, Goldsmith, Richardson, Young, Smollett, Sterne and Swift. Bertin (1751-1819) had worked in England as a tutor and translator and was the author of some 50 works on various subjects, including several translations. While in England he had studied Samuel Taylor’s system of shorthand and published, in 1791 a French edition of An Essay intended to establish a Standard for a universal System of Stenography, successfully introducing modern shorthand to the French public. Encyclopédie comique and Les Rieurs anglais are partly adverts for this system, with their shorthand plates and supplement entitled ‘Dissertation critique et curieuse sur l‘Okigraphie’. The second volume of Encyclopédie comique has a frontispiece depicting an English ‘Wife Sale’ (vente d’une femme Angloise à l’encan) which illustrates a short account of this peculiarly English custom or ritual observed in rural or working-class communities. ‘It can be seen as a bleak transaction, or as street-theatre, or as a shaming ritual’ (E. P. Thompson, ‘Sale of Wives’ in Customs in Common, 1993, p. 447). Gay II, 98 (first work only); Rochedieu, Bibliography of French Translations of English Works, 1700-1800, Appendix III (Collections of works translated from the English), 30.

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  • Letters on the Improvement of the Mind. Addressed to a young Lady... in two volumes. by CHAPONE, Hester. CHAPONE, Hester. ~ Letters on the Improvement of the Mind. Addressed to a young Lady... in two volumes. Dublin: for J. Exshaw, H. Saunders, W. Sleater, J. Potts, D. Chamberlaine, J. Williams, and R. Moncrieffe, 1773.
    First Dublin edition, printed in the same year as the first (London) edition. The ten letters comprise: On the First Principles of Religion; On the… (more)

    First Dublin edition, printed in the same year as the first (London) edition. The ten letters comprise: On the First Principles of Religion; On the Study of the holy Scriptures (2); On the Regulation of the Heart and Affections (2); On the Government of the Temper; On Oeconomy; On Politeness and Accomplishments; On Geography and Chronology; On the Manner of Reading and Course of reading History. It is dedicated to Elizabeth Montagu. ‘Montagu encouraged Chapone, presumably in the summer of 1770, when the two friends were travelling in Scotland, to publish the letters on education she had been sending her niece since 1765. Chapone was grateful to Montagu for correcting the manuscript, and the text, Letters on the Improvement of the Mind (1773), was Chapone’s most celebrated work’ (Oxford DNB). It ran to many editions over several decades. ESTC: BL, Cambridge, NLI, Bodley and National Trust (Florence Court, Enniskillen, N.I.). No US copies of this edition.

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  • Ann’s Book... by PARSONS, Jacynth and Karl. PARSONS, Jacynth and Karl. ~ Ann’s Book... London: [William Brendon & Son, Plymouth for] The Medici Society, 1929.
    First edition of this attractive book illustrated by Jacynth Parsons. Parsons was a child prodigy, contributing superb illustrations to Ann’s Book by her father, the… (more)

    First edition of this attractive book illustrated by Jacynth Parsons. Parsons was a child prodigy, contributing superb illustrations to Ann’s Book by her father, the Arts and Crafts designer Karl Parsons, in 1929. In 1927 the Medici Society put on an exhibition of her ‘Pictures from the age of 3 to 16’ which met with considerable success. She later illustrated an edition of Blake under the patronage of W.B. Yeats, and several other works.

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  • Songs, Madrigals and Sonnets. A Gathering of some of the most pleasant Flowers of old English Poetry. Set in borders of coloured ornaments and vignettes. by CUNDALL, Joseph. CUNDALL, Joseph. ~ Songs, Madrigals and Sonnets. A Gathering of some of the most pleasant Flowers of old English Poetry. Set in borders of coloured ornaments and vignettes. London: [Charles Whittingham, Chiswick for] Longman, Brown, Green, and Co. 1849.
    First edition of these selections from Shakespeare, Milton, Marlowe, Coleridge, Spenser, Herbert, and others. ‘The ornamental borders in this book have been printed by means… (more)

    First edition of these selections from Shakespeare, Milton, Marlowe, Coleridge, Spenser, Herbert, and others. ‘The ornamental borders in this book have been printed by means of wood-blocks’. A collaborative enterprise between Cundall and the Chiswick Press it was printed in 2000 copies. ‘One-quarter share in the profits was to be paid to Joseph Cundall, but it is doubtful if there were any, since, in January 1851, forty bound copies and no less than one thousand six hundred and forty-two copies in sheets were sold to H.G. Bohn. It is a charming little volume and deserved a greater success: it is now a collector’s piece’ (McClean). McLean, Victorian Book Design and Colour Printing (2nd ed.), pp. 70-71.

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  • Prayer written at Vailima. by [SANGORSKI, Alberto, illuminator]. Robert Louis STEVENSON. [SANGORSKI, Alberto, illuminator]. Robert Louis STEVENSON. ~ Prayer written at Vailima. [London: Chatto & Windus, 1910].
    A celebrated Sangorski production, illuminating the family prayers of the Stevenson family used at their Samoan home at Vailima. Alberto Sangorksi brought to perfection the… (more)

    A celebrated Sangorski production, illuminating the family prayers of the Stevenson family used at their Samoan home at Vailima. Alberto Sangorksi brought to perfection the Victorian revival of manuscript illumination. Second impression.

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  • The Seven Deadly Sins... illustrated in Mediaeval Manner by Phillys [sic] Vere Campbell. by BOWEN, Marjorie. BOWEN, Marjorie. ~ The Seven Deadly Sins... illustrated in Mediaeval Manner by Phillys [sic] Vere Campbell. 1950.
    A rather extraordinary faithful manuscript copy of Bowen’s set of seven strange satirical tales originally published in the Pall Mall Magazine, December 1913-June 1914, complete… (more)

    A rather extraordinary faithful manuscript copy of Bowen’s set of seven strange satirical tales originally published in the Pall Mall Magazine, December 1913-June 1914, complete with copies of the original illustrations by Bowen’s sister Phyllis Vere Campbell. The identity of the very accomplished copyist is provided only by the monogram on the title-page ‘FMSB’.

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  • Catalogus gloriae mundi... In quo multa praeclara de praerogatiuis, praeeminentijs, maioritate, praestantijs, & excellentijs, continentur... Opus ad omnes publicas et quotidianas actiones dirigendas, controuersiasq́ue grauissimas dissoluendas, perquàm vtilissimum : in XII. libros diuisum. Nunc denuo accuratissime emendatum, ac nouis figuris elegantissime illustratum: ita vt facilè omnes caeteras editiones antecellere possit. by CHASSENEUZ, Barthélemy de. CHASSENEUZ, Barthélemy de. ~ Catalogus gloriae mundi... In quo multa praeclara de praerogatiuis, praeeminentijs, maioritate, praestantijs, & excellentijs, continentur... Opus ad omnes publicas et quotidianas actiones dirigendas, controuersiasq́ue grauissimas dissoluendas, perquàm vtilissimum : in XII. libros diuisum. Nunc denuo accuratissime emendatum, ac nouis figuris elegantissime illustratum: ita vt facilè omnes caeteras editiones antecellere possit. Frankfurt: Sigmund Feyerabend, 1579.
    A spectacular renaissance illustrated book, the first edition with the detailed and dramatic double-page etched plates by Jost Amman. First published at Lyon in 1529… (more)

    A spectacular renaissance illustrated book, the first edition with the detailed and dramatic double-page etched plates by Jost Amman. First published at Lyon in 1529 with single-page woodcuts (reprinted with the same woodcuts in 1546) there were also Venice editions of 1569, 1571 and 1576 with quarter-page woodcuts.

    A vast encyclopaedic work, the Catalogus gloriae mundi sought to set out the hierarchy of creation —animate and inanimate, from the heavens themselves to the governments, laws and sciences of humanity. Its particular value was in setting out orders of precedency and protocol in law and ceremony, which probably accounts for its interest to publisher Sigmund Feyerabend, who enlisted Amman to create large emblematic plates for this edition, derived from the earlier woodcut illustrations. They are:

    1. A genealogy with insignia of royal houses (including European houses and those of Persia, Egypt, Israel etc); 2. Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden; 3. a mandala depicting the ranks of the hierarchy of the heavens; 4. a sitting of the papal court; 5. an imperial council; 6. a regal council; 7. a judicial court; 8. the nobility; 9. the military ranks; 10. The liberal arts and sciences (14 female personifications); 11. the mechanical arts (7 female personifications); 12. a geocentric cosmography. Andresen, A. Jost Amman, 32-43; The New Hollstein: German Engravings, Etchings and Woodcuts 1400-1700, 1998, VI.144. A very scarce book. Worldcat lists non-European copies at Folger, Getty and Huntington libraries only.

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  • Le Cook de l’enfance et de la jeunesse, ou Choix des particularités les plus intéressantes, des détails les plus instructifs et les plus curieux contenus dans les relations des trois voyages de ce célèbre navigateur autour du monde; précédé d’une notice sur sa vie... avec quatre jolies gravures. by (COOK, Captain). CHAMPAGNAC, J. -B. -J. (COOK, Captain). CHAMPAGNAC, J. -B. -J. ~ Le Cook de l’enfance et de la jeunesse, ou Choix des particularités les plus intéressantes, des détails les plus instructifs et les plus curieux contenus dans les relations des trois voyages de ce célèbre navigateur autour du monde; précédé d’une notice sur sa vie... avec quatre jolies gravures. Paris: [Cosson] Fruger et Brunet, 1836.
    First edition. A juvenile Cook in French, describing his voyages to the Pacific, including New Zealand, Batavia (Jakarta), Tahiti and the Sandwich Islands. the plates… (more)

    First edition. A juvenile Cook in French, describing his voyages to the Pacific, including New Zealand, Batavia (Jakarta), Tahiti and the Sandwich Islands. the plates being: Mort de Capitaine Cook (frontispiece); Indien courant un Muck; Habitans de l’Ile Mallicalo and Débarquement du Capitaine Cook dans la baie de Karakakooka. The appendix contains an interesting ethnographic essay ‘Des deux variétés de l’espèce humaine recnnues dans l’Océanie’, two others on the geography of Oceania and on previous voyages to the region followed by biographies of participants in Cook’s voyages (Cook, Banks, Solander, the Forsters, Clark and Bligh). Worldcat and Library Hub locate no UK or North American copies (though there is one at the University of Hawaii)

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  • La Princesse lumière Conte de fées. by BARTEL, Jehan [pseudonym of Jehannette or Jeanette BARTEL]. BARTEL, Jehan [pseudonym of Jehannette or Jeanette BARTEL]. ~ La Princesse lumière Conte de fées. [Toulouse: Imprimerie du Centre], June 1905.
    A privately-published fairy tale by a young girl, of which we can find no copy in any public collection, nor any obvious trace of the… (more)

    A privately-published fairy tale by a young girl, of which we can find no copy in any public collection, nor any obvious trace of the work or its author elsewhere. The book is printed on a handsome glazed paper and incorporates three illustrations, presumably the work of the author. It was almost certainly her who also decorated the smooth calf binding with a whimsical design depicting an owl in a tree by moonlight. The printed dedication is to ‘ma chère petite Cousine Renée’, with this copy of what was presumably a very small edition inscribed to the author’s mother.

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  • Bibliothèque in miniature [spine title]. by (MINIATURE BOOKS). (MINIATURE BOOKS). ~ Bibliothèque in miniature [spine title]. Paris: [Didot frères] chez Marcilly, [c. 1835].
    A delightful miniature library in its original publisher’s box, comprising: 1. Berquine, Variétés; 2. Démoustier, Mythologie; 3. Florian, Mélanges; 4. La Fontaine, Fables; 5. Millevoye;… (more)

    A delightful miniature library in its original publisher’s box, comprising: 1. Berquine, Variétés; 2. Démoustier, Mythologie; 3. Florian, Mélanges; 4. La Fontaine, Fables; 5. Millevoye; 6. Poésies, Voltaire. The set was issued in various forms, sometime with wrappers of green and pink and sometimes in a variant box. Bondy, p. 75; Gumuchian, 4062; Welsh, Miniature books, 1250

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  • [A bound collection of 54 plates] by MOTZ, Johann Michael, heirs of; and Albrecht SCHMIDT. MOTZ, Johann Michael, heirs of; and Albrecht SCHMIDT. ~ [A bound collection of 54 plates] Augsburg [n.d. but soon after 1750].
    An interesting collection of 54 rare hand coloured plates by Augsburg publishers Johann Michael Motz and Albrecht Schmidt, very much in the style of the… (more)

    An interesting collection of 54 rare hand coloured plates by Augsburg publishers Johann Michael Motz and Albrecht Schmidt, very much in the style of the recreational and educational prints of the slightly earlier Augsburg engraver-publisher Martin Engelbrecht. Like Engelbrecht’s these prints were intended for popular consumption and were often cut up for albums or other decoupage projects. All are very rare, notably the fine 4-plate suite of the continents here (Europe, Asia, Africa and America) and a very substantial part of the biblical sequence by Schmidt. There are also plates for the four, two hunting plates and another after Boucher. The album was evidently put together c. 1800 from two or more constituent parts, perhaps already quite well used to judge by the variation in condition across the collection and by the various patterns of previous stab holes. An early owner/user has added some amusing pencil drawings to the rear endpapers.

    Comprising:

    1. Les Amans Surpris (after Boucher, c, 1750), Motz.
    2. Les Plaisirs au jardin & La musique, 2 plates, Motz.
    3. Europa, Asia, Africa, America, 4 plates, lower lines of verses and imprint cropped, but Motz after I. Waxmuth.
    4. Der Frühling, Der Sommer, Der Herbst, Der Winter, 4 plates, Motz.
    5. Das Feuer, Das Wasser, Die Lufft, Die Erde, 4 plates, Motz.
    6. Der Morgen, Der Mittag, Der Abend, Die Nacht, 4 plates, Motz after Stockhman[n].
    7. [Hunting], 2 untitled prints, Motz after Stockhman[n].
    8. [Old Testament. Genesis] 14 plates, numbered 5-12, 37, 40, 45-48 each with gold borders, Albrecht Schmidt. [of 56?]
    9. [Old Testament, Genesis, the story of Joseph]. 13 plates, numbered 1-5, 7-14. Motz.
    10. [The Prodigal Son]. 6 plates, numbered 1-2, 5-8, Motz after C. Vogt (stubs of plates 3 & 4, evidently cut out).

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  • anciens et modernes, composant la deuxième partie de la bibliothèque M.V***, de Chartres, les Vendredi 15, Samedi 16, Lundi 18, Mardi 19 Juin 1855 et le le lendemain s’il y a lieu, à 7 heures du soir. 21, rue des Grands-Augustins. 21, Par le ministère de Me Charles Charpentier commissaire-priseur à Paris, rue de Helder, 14; assisté de M. A. Aubry, Libraire-Expert, à Paris, rue Dauphine, no 16. by VENTE DES LIVRES VENTE DES LIVRES ~ anciens et modernes, composant la deuxième partie de la bibliothèque M.V***, de Chartres, les Vendredi 15, Samedi 16, Lundi 18, Mardi 19 Juin 1855 et le le lendemain s’il y a lieu, à 7 heures du soir. 21, rue des Grands-Augustins. 21, Par le ministère de Me Charles Charpentier commissaire-priseur à Paris, rue de Helder, 14; assisté de M. A. Aubry, Libraire-Expert, à Paris, rue Dauphine, no 16. Paris: M[ada]me de Lacombe, 1855.
    A book auction bill, advertising the second part of the auction sale of what was evidently an immense private library belonging to the unidentified (by… (more)

    A book auction bill, advertising the second part of the auction sale of what was evidently an immense private library belonging to the unidentified (by us) M. V***, de Chartres. Buyers premium is advertised at 5% and the catalogue was issued by auctioneer Charpentier and book expert Auguste Aubry. No copy of the catalogue (of either part) is recorded in the Bibliothèque nationale catalogue.

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  • Jurons !!! pas de diminutions...... by LES VAMPIRES. LES VAMPIRES. ~ Jurons !!! pas de diminutions...... Paris: H. Platel. Cheyère, [n.d. 1826].
    A very rare satirical print depicting two blood-sucking landlords expelling a bewildered tenant. In the hand of one of the ‘vampires’ a note reads ‘eviction’… (more)

    A very rare satirical print depicting two blood-sucking landlords expelling a bewildered tenant. In the hand of one of the ‘vampires’ a note reads ‘eviction’ [congé], ‘end of lease’ [fin de bail] and ‘increase’ [augmentation] and all the notes scattered on the ground make reference to the real estate business. The caption reads ‘We promise, no reduction’. Paris (like London) was in the throes of a vampire craze in the 1820s, following the publication of Polidori’s The Vampyre in 1819. Charles Nodier’s melodrama Le Vampire was performed in Paris in June 1820, and spawned a host of spinoffs in popular culture and the press.

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  • Grand Equestrian Feat, called the Peasant Frolic. As performed at Astley’s Amphitheatre. Price 4d 1/2 Plain. by (CIRCUS). (TOY THEATRE). (CIRCUS). (TOY THEATRE). ~ Grand Equestrian Feat, called the Peasant Frolic. As performed at Astley’s Amphitheatre. Price 4d 1/2 Plain. [London]: W[illiam]. West at his Theatrical Warehouse, Exeter Street, Strand, Apr[i]l 14, 1821.
    A rare large-format toy theatre print with figures for cutting out and mounting from a performance at Astley’s Amphitheatre, which was then managed by Andrew… (more)

    A rare large-format toy theatre print with figures for cutting out and mounting from a performance at Astley’s Amphitheatre, which was then managed by Andrew Ducrow, the father of circus equestrianism. The plate is unsigned other than by the publisher William West and is unattributed in the British Museum print catalogue, but it is of high quality. The BM copy was acquired with the nineteenth-century collection of toy theatre prints assembled by Ralph Thomas, who had made a tentative attribution to William Blake in Notes and Queries in 1898 (June 4th, p. 455). The British Museum did not adopt the attribution, though there is certainly something of Blake’s style in the print. William West was the pioneer of the Regency toy theatre print, commissioning work from both Cruickshank brothers, Flaxman, Dighton and Brooke.

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  • Les Hermaphrodites. [L’Isle des Hermaphrodites nouvellement descouverte. Avec les moeurs, loix, coustume & ordonances des habitans d’icelle]. by [ARTUS, Thomas, sieur d’Embry]. [ARTUS, Thomas, sieur d’Embry]. ~ Les Hermaphrodites. [L’Isle des Hermaphrodites nouvellement descouverte. Avec les moeurs, loix, coustume & ordonances des habitans d’icelle]. [N.p ?France, N.d. c. 1605].
    First edition of Artus’s satire on Henri III of France (assassinated in 1589) who was reputedly fond of cross-dressing and whose court was widely criticised… (more)

    First edition of Artus’s satire on Henri III of France (assassinated in 1589) who was reputedly fond of cross-dressing and whose court was widely criticised for decadence and immorality.

    Les Hermaphrodites describes a realm populated by men who dress as women, not strictly hermaphrodite but preoccupied by dress, hairstyle, makeup, extravagant gesture and speech. Also concerned with the laws and customs of the hermaphrodite kingdom, the satire operates by presenting Henri’s court as both dissolute and against nature. In so doing it reflects in great detail contemporary attitudes (both positive and negative) to gender-blurring of any sort, whether social or sexual. At one point, for example, Artus writes ironically that cross-dressing was perfectly permissible: ‘Chacun pourra s’abiller à sa fantasie, pourveu que ce soit bravement, superbement, & sans aucune distinction ny consideration de sa qualité ou faculté’, thus combining his disapproval with a suggestion of the negation of natural order or rank.
    The engraved title depicts a figure of ambiguous gender (perhaps Henri himself) in male breeches, but full-hipped, with a suggestion of female breasts and a floral coiffe, with the legend ‘A tous accords’. Below it is the text:

    ‘Je ne suis masle ny femelle
    Et sy je suis bien en ceruelle
    Le quell des deux je doibs choisir
    Mais qu’importe à qui on ressamble
    Il vault mieux les avoir ensemble
    On en reçoit double Plaisir.’

    Henri’s sexuality was the subject of numerous contemporary satires. His taste for cross-dressing was well-known and his sexual orientation a matter of speculation, since he enjoyed close relationships with his male mignons (providing plenty of ammunition for moralistic detractors) but also well-publicised affairs with a succession of mistresses.

    The second part of the book is Discours de Jacophile a Limne. Les Hermaphrodites was republished in 1724 with the title Description de l’isle des Hermaphrodites. This reprint is comparatively common, while the first edition is notably rare.

    The arms of the contemporary binding are of the Clausse de Marchaumont family, probably those of courtier Henri (d. 1613), the eldest son of Henry II’s secreatary of state Cosme Clausse, who served as Henry III’s ambassador to the Swiss states.

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  • Florilège [spine title]. by [JEAN, prêtre]. [JEAN, prêtre]. ~ Florilège [spine title]. [France, c. 1890s].
    A curious florilegium, with extensive lithographed devotional text, presumably after the handwriting of author (’Jean, prêtre’) and a series of handcoloured lithographs. The latter include… (more)

    A curious florilegium, with extensive lithographed devotional text, presumably after the handwriting of author (’Jean, prêtre’) and a series of handcoloured lithographs. The latter include 31 of flowers (marigold, violet, primula, iris, cornflower, honeysuckle etc) which are paired with a description and devotional meditation on the opposite page. The others depict a hermit, a memento mori, a decorative contents list and (at the end) women in a religious procession with a banner. At least one them is signed ‘Jean’. The prefatory text is from Chateaubriand’s Le Martyrs: ‘En achevant ces mots, Zacharie s’arrêta, me montra le ciel où nous devions nous retrouver un jour, et, sans me laisser le temps de me jeter à ses pieds, il me quitta après m’avoir donné sa dernière leçon. C’est ainsi que Jésus-Christ dont il imite l’exemple, se plaisoit à instruire ses disciples, en se promenant au bord du lac de Génésareth, et faisoit parler l'herbe des champs et le lis de la vallée’.

    Although marked ‘Deposé’ on the first leaf, we have been unable to find any other copies or record of its publication. It was presumably printed in very small numbers.

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  • Die Jugend in den Erholungstagen auf dem Lande... mit 6 kupfern begleitet mit deutsch-französisch-italineisch und böhmischen text. by GRÜNER, V. R. GRÜNER, V. R. ~ Die Jugend in den Erholungstagen auf dem Lande... mit 6 kupfern begleitet mit deutsch-französisch-italineisch und böhmischen text. Vienna: [J. P. Sollinger for] Friedrich Wihelm Pfautsch, [n.d., c. 1830].
    First (and presumably only) edition of a rare and delightful large format illustrated children’s book depicting boys and girls enjoying country life, including gardening and… (more)

    First (and presumably only) edition of a rare and delightful large format illustrated children’s book depicting boys and girls enjoying country life, including gardening and open air reading. The text is quadrilingual: German, French, Italian and Czech. This exceptionally well preserved copy bears a contemporary prize label, recording it as a prize to one Anna Kalser at the Pilsner Kreishhaupt-Schule (Bohemia). Very rare: no copy found in Worldcat. KVK records a single copy (Austrian National Library) of a variant issue (also undated) in 8vo format (paginated pp. 33, not 15 as in our oblong 4to, with the plates folded uncoloured).

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  • Messes noires. Lord Lyllian. by FERSEN, Jacques d’Adelswärd, baron. FERSEN, Jacques d’Adelswärd, baron. ~ Messes noires. Lord Lyllian. Paris: [Bussière, Saint-Amande, for] Librairie Léon Vanier, A. Messein, successeur, 1905.
    First edition (despite the mention fictive ‘deuxième édition’ on the title-page). A pioneering gay narrative and one of the first novels written about Oscar Wilde… (more)

    First edition (despite the mention fictive ‘deuxième édition’ on the title-page). A pioneering gay narrative and one of the first novels written about Oscar Wilde after his conviction. Messes noires is the story of Lord Lyllian, a tragic character born in Scotland with a striking overt resemblance to Wilde, addicted to adolescent boys and to opium. It was written on the Island of Capri where Fersen had fled following his arrest in France (for indecent assault and exciting minors to debauchery in the course of a series of soirées dubbed Messes noires). Fersen had formerly associated with a coterie of Paris decadents including Jean Lorrain, Robert de Montesquiou and Karl-Joris Huysmans, but his 1903 arrest caused a scandal in the press, who were quick to dub him ‘un nouvel Oscar Wilde’, and he was ostracised by almost all his former literary friends. The cover and title-page of the novel bear the Wildean epigram ‘L’amour a pour moi deux ennemis: / les préjugés et ma concierge’.

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