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  • Wisdom. by (REVERSE GLASS COLOURED PRINT). (REVERSE GLASS COLOURED PRINT). ~ Wisdom. London: J. Hinton, 44 Wells Street, Oxford Street, Feb 14, 1802.
    Wisdom as a woman. The print is a good example of the relatively short-lived fashion for the ‘back painted’ or reverse glass coloured mezzotint. The… (more)

    Wisdom as a woman. The print is a good example of the relatively short-lived fashion for the ‘back painted’ or reverse glass coloured mezzotint. The print is moistened and laid face down on a varnished sheet of glass and allowed to dry; once the paper is firmly fused with the varnish and glass, most of it is scraped away from the verso leaving a minutely thin layer of printed paper within the varnish. This is then varnished again on the verso to give a rich and distinctive translucency. Colours, usually in oil, are then added, again to verso. Over time the varnishes invariably darken, resulting in the rather subdued but still translucent hues found here.

    ‘Wisdom’ was probably part of a sequence of the Virtues published by Hinton, shortly after 1800. The British museum catalogue includes a further print representing ‘Innocence’ (but not reverse glass treated).

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  • (ALMANAC). BRÉE, l’aîné. ~ Cadeau des muses, ou Almanach universel, Étrennes utiles et agréables. [41e. Année.] Année bissextile 1840. Falaise: Levavasseur, successeur de M. Brée, and Marcilly in Paris, [ 1839].
    A rare little almanac, with preliminary charts bearing three woodcut maps (one of the world, one of Europe, the other of France), small celestial charts,… (more)

    A rare little almanac, with preliminary charts bearing three woodcut maps (one of the world, one of Europe, the other of France), small celestial charts, tables of longitude and latitude, and an emblematic woodcut frontispiece depicting Urania presiding over the heavens. The text is typical of contemporary almanacs— calendrical and political tables followed by popular songs and verses. Cadeau des muses was published at Falaise (Calvados, Normandy) between 1799 and 1855. All issues are institutionally rare, with Worldcat listing just a small handful of individual issues.

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  • A Call to professing Christians on Temperance... fifth London edition. by DICKINSON, Austin, the Reverend. DICKINSON, Austin, the Reverend. ~ A Call to professing Christians on Temperance... fifth London edition. London: S. Bagster, Westley & Davis, 1831.
    A very scarce early temperance movement sermon. ‘The use of liquor is inconsistent with any thing like pure and high spiritual enjoyment, clear spiritual views,… (more)

    A very scarce early temperance movement sermon. ‘The use of liquor is inconsistent with any thing like pure and high spiritual enjoyment, clear spiritual views, and true devotion...’. Published in New York in the National Preacher in 1831 and rapidly reprinted within just a few months in several editions in London, where the Temperance movement was in its infancy. The British and Foreign Temperance Society issued its first report in 1831 (an extract is reproduced on p. 16 here). Worldcat/LibraryHub locate only a handful of copies of all issues, American and British (the former being extracts from the National Preacher).

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  • The Fall of Babylon. A Sermon, designed to commemorate the third Centenary of the Glorious Reformation from Popery. Delivered in Greenwich Road Chapel, Dec. 28th, 1817. by CHAPMAN, William, the Reverend. CHAPMAN, William, the Reverend. ~ The Fall of Babylon. A Sermon, designed to commemorate the third Centenary of the Glorious Reformation from Popery. Delivered in Greenwich Road Chapel, Dec. 28th, 1817. London: [Winchester and Son for] Delahoy, Deptford; Cole, Greenwich; Omer, Chatham; Hardcastle, Woolwich; Williams, Hamilton, Conder, and Byfield, London, 1818.
    First edition of this sermon on the tercentenary of the Reformation preached in Chapman’s independent evangelical chapel in Greenwich. An engraved portrait of the author,… (more)

    First edition of this sermon on the tercentenary of the Reformation preached in Chapman’s independent evangelical chapel in Greenwich. An engraved portrait of the author, dated 1824, has been added. Worldcat/Library Hub locate copies at BL, Newcastle, Regent's Park College Library and Staatsbibliothek, Belrin only. No US copies.

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  • Recueil de chansons. by (CHANSONS). (CHANSONS). ~ Recueil de chansons. [France, c. 1860s].
    A very neat collection of popular songs, most from the 1850s, of the sort circulated in ephemeral printed and manuscript song sheets. Highlights include: Est-ce… (more)

    A very neat collection of popular songs, most from the 1850s, of the sort circulated in ephemeral printed and manuscript song sheets. Highlights include: Est-ce le hatchich qui t’a mis comme ça: an uncommon reference to hashish in this context, and a song (in common with several others in the manuscript) for which we can find no printed source. Sung to the tune of ‘Aÿ chiquita’, this is a woman’s complaint to her suitor, with the chorus:

    ‘Est-ce l’absinthe, ou bien encore,
    Le hatchich qui t’as mis, dis-moi,
    Dans cet état que j’aborre,
    Et tu veux m’aimer! Ah! Tais-toi.’

    This is hardly Baudelaire, but a pleasing contemporary parallel to Les Paradis artificiels.

    Others include Les Cris de Paris, Les Chemins de fer and Les Anges de la charité ou les inondés de 1856 and there are songs attributable to Pierre Dupont and Charles Durand, both popular in the 1850s and 60s. Some are in dialect and typically, the subjects tend towards love, drink and gastronomy, but there are also a couple alluding to the language of flowers. The compilation is scrupulously neat—and is presumably, in part, an exercise in penmanship.

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  • Étude sur la transformisme [and] Dictionnaire botanique. by (NATURAL HISTORY). DUMOULIN. (NATURAL HISTORY). DUMOULIN. ~ Étude sur la transformisme [and] Dictionnaire botanique. [Belgium, Herstal, prov. Liège, 1920s- c.1943].
    The life work of a Belgian natural history enthusiast, a massive and extraordinary collection of gathered knowledge, illustrated throughout with thousands of the author’s distinctive… (more)

    The life work of a Belgian natural history enthusiast, a massive and extraordinary collection of gathered knowledge, illustrated throughout with thousands of the author’s distinctive naive watercolours. The manuscript, in four volumes (one elephant folio, three folios), consists of complex visual arrangements of data which often extends over huge folded charts, each leaf filled to its maximum extent in neat manuscript in coloured inks. Though undated, it includes materials gathered in the period c. 1920-1943 and perhaps before, and in an inserted note, the otherwise unknown compiler describes the work of ‘most of my life’. It would appear to be the work of an amateur rather than an academic specialist, hence its striking originality as a work of popular science.

    The large folio volume is really a huge collection of charts devoted to human anatomy, animal and plant biology, the fossil record and evolution (or transformisme). Botany makes up the largest proportion, but there are sections on insects, reptiles, birds, flying lizards, marsupials and mammals. Dumoulin also had an interest in Africa and there are sections on the Sahara and on the Belgian Congo. The focus is worldwide and is drawn from reference works rather than original research, but the arrangements are highly idiosyncratic. Several evolutionary charts are attempted, mentioning Linnaeus, Darwin, Lamarck and Jussieu.

    The Dictionnaire botanique is a large 3 volume compilation mainly devoted to botanical classification, from the smallest mosses and seaweeds, to exotic flowering plants and forest trees. Like the larger folio volume, these volumes are illustrated throughout, with accompanying text in coloured inks and often containing emblematic figures of human figures appropriate to the origins of the plant: including Africans and Americans. They have apparently been bound from a large number of separate files (whose stiff paper cover with labels are preserved) each devoted to a different botanical family. The third volume contains additional materials at the end, including a study on Pasteur and germs, another on insects and another on bird classification. Like the preceding parts, these are also copiously illustrated in colour.

    We have discovered almost nothing of Dumoulin himself, though various details place him in the French-speaking Walloon region of Belgium around Liège. He includes a couple of leaves devoted to Belgium, one with an interesting historical schema (including a memento of various gas attacks in the Great War). A couple of inserted letters are to Belgian academic scientists and one expresses Dumoulin’s hope that his work would end up at a University. The cover of largest volume bears various mottos, perhaps a personal credo: ‘La vie sans science est presque l’image de la morte, C. Volpi’, ‘Chercher. Comprendre. Vouloir. Pouvoir. Oser. Sentir. Méditer’, ‘Naître, mourir et renaître sans cesse, telle est la loi, telle est lavie. V. Hugo’ and ‘Travailler pour être estimé. Etre estimé pour être aimé. Etre aimé pour être heureux’. The wooden stand suggests an intention for display. Whether this was an elaborate teaching aid, or simply an almost-incredible recreation, is an open question.

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  • Livre de compte des chaptels & amodiations des métayers Jean Rateau, François le Beuf, Philibert Baudon, & Isac le Beuf avec le dénombrement des bestiaux qu’ils avoient où que leurs ay remit dans le tems du compte que j’ay fait avec eux le 9eme de Novembre 1733 by (FARMING). [Account book]. (FARMING). [Account book]. ~ Livre de compte des chaptels & amodiations des métayers Jean Rateau, François le Beuf, Philibert Baudon, & Isac le Beuf avec le dénombrement des bestiaux qu’ils avoient où que leurs ay remit dans le tems du compte que j’ay fait avec eux le 9eme de Novembre 1733 [Burgundy, 1733-1758].
    Some twenty years’ accounts kept on behalf of a Burgundian landlord, of 5 métayer tenant farmers, who farmed on his land, with his resources, in… (more)

    Some twenty years’ accounts kept on behalf of a Burgundian landlord, of 5 métayer tenant farmers, who farmed on his land, with his resources, in exchange for a share (notionally a half) of the profit. These were principally livestock farmers raising cattle and sheep, so the accounts provide interesting first-hand details of the economics of the French meat and wool industries of the period. All the farmers are named on the title-page, but Isac Lebeuf’s farm was run after his death by his widow, Marie, so the account for 1736 is in her name. Prices are given for animals bought as stock and then sold to butchers or sheared and the fleeces sold. The accounts give a very clear and intelligible picture of the initial capital of each farm, of introduced stock, of running costs and of the shares of yearly profits.

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  • [Chansons], by ARBEZ-CARME, [Elie Eugène]. ARBEZ-CARME, [Elie Eugène]. ~ [Chansons], Bourg-en-Bresse, Ain [Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes], 1898-9.
    An illustrated chansonnier, highly decorated, and including songs such as: Souvenir de ‘70, Les Femmes soldats, Le Baiser, l’Anglaise, Le Testament du Libre-Penseur, Marche du… (more)

    An illustrated chansonnier, highly decorated, and including songs such as: Souvenir de ‘70, Les Femmes soldats, Le Baiser, l’Anglaise, Le Testament du Libre-Penseur, Marche du Bataillon d’Afrique, L’Africaine, Départ pour Madagascar, La Pucelle de Bellville, Les Prisonniers morts pour la liberté.

    These notebooks are a fascinating example of a popular method of collecting popular French cabaret songs, all neatly copied up with headings and illustrations (usually suitably suggestive) copied from contemporary song sheets (an example of one of these loose sheets is loosely inserted). We have seen several similar examples, in which the illustrations are apparently traced using carbon paper from printed (or other manuscripts) exemplars. Their context is usually military or naval and they represent a significant form of popular or naive art.

    The decorative title, with elaborate borders describes Arbez Carme as ‘employé au Magasin des Vivres de Réserve du 23me Reg[im]ent d’Inf[anter]ie a Bourg, Ain’. Military records record his birth in 1876 in Jura, his occupation as a perruquier (wigmaker) and his recruitment in 1896.

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  • Histoire métallique de Napoléon ou Recueil des médailles et des monnaies qui ont été frappées depuis la première campagne de l’armée d’Italie jusqu’à son abdication en 1815. by [MILLIN DE GRANDMAISON, Aubin Louis; James MILLINGEN, editor]. [MILLIN DE GRANDMAISON, Aubin Louis; James MILLINGEN, editor]. ~ Histoire métallique de Napoléon ou Recueil des médailles et des monnaies qui ont été frappées depuis la première campagne de l’armée d’Italie jusqu’à son abdication en 1815. Londres: [G. Schutzer, 13 Poland St] imprimé pour l’éditeur. Se trouve chez Treuttel et Wurtz... 1819 [-1821].
    A interesting and unique copy of this monumental pictorial record of European coins and medals struck in the Napoleonic era, including many commemorative medals of… (more)

    A interesting and unique copy of this monumental pictorial record of European coins and medals struck in the Napoleonic era, including many commemorative medals of battles and truces. A printed book, with a London imprint, with portions (including title) in manuscript copy, and plates dissected, partly copied in manuscript and re-arranged. It is difficult to interpret the unusual hybrid form here, but it would appear to be a contemporary collector or curator’s production allowing the illustrations to be consulted alongside their descriptions in the text. The plates in the printed edition presented the coins and medals in a different order to the text, with corresponding numbers linking the illustrations, but turning from text to plate may have been a tiresome business. The fact that the titles, preliminary text and indexes are given as manuscript copies is less easy to explain, though at least one of the manuscripts indexes is more comprehensive than that of the printed edition. Many of the illustrations are marked with a small flower shaped inkstamp, perhaps also a collector’s demarcation.

    Millin de Grandmaison (1759-1818) had been curator of the Cabinet des médailles et antiques of the former French royal library but died before this survey could be published. The manuscript was passed to the British-born James Millingen, formerly of the French mint, later an antiquary and dealer, who collated it and published it in London in both French and English versions. The imprints are faithfully copied in manuscript in our version, but it is likely a French rather than a British production.

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  • Jugemens humains [and other extracts]. by (CALLIGRAPHY). GREGOIRE, L. (CALLIGRAPHY). GREGOIRE, L. ~ Jugemens humains [and other extracts]. [France], October, 1780.
    A series of calligraphic models or exercises of impressive size and quality. The writer, who signs his (or just possibly, her) name, minutely, at the… (more)

    A series of calligraphic models or exercises of impressive size and quality. The writer, who signs his (or just possibly, her) name, minutely, at the foot of the first leaf, has chosen two edifying texts to transcribe. The first three sheets contain passages (including one on the immorality of duelling) from Varietés serieuses et amusantes of 1765, while the other eight, rather unusually, contain letters from a father to a daughter (Émilie), are extracts from Abbé Gerard’s epistolary novel Le Comte de Valmont, ou les égarements de la raison of 1774. It would be unusual if this denoted a female scribe, but the choice of these extracts is tantalising.

    Each leaf is ruled in leadpoint and bears a large calligraphic cartouche, some have an additional penwork initial roundel and most exhibit a variety of scripts of exceptional neatness and regularity.

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  • Remarks on the Speech of M. Dupont, made in the National Convention of France, on the Subjects of Religion and public Education... by MORE, Hannah. MORE, Hannah. ~ Remarks on the Speech of M. Dupont, made in the National Convention of France, on the Subjects of Religion and public Education... London: Printed for T. Cadell... 1793.
    First edition. Jacques Dupont, a member of the French Convention, had delivered a violently anticlerical speech in December 1792, the text of which had been… (more)

    First edition. Jacques Dupont, a member of the French Convention, had delivered a violently anticlerical speech in December 1792, the text of which had been circulated in an English pamphlet. The title verso reads: ‘The Profits of this Publication are to be given to the French Emigrant Clergy...’

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  • Venus attiring the Graces. Addressed to ---- by (VENUS). (VENUS). ~ Venus attiring the Graces. Addressed to ---- London: Printed for J. Dodsley. 1777.
    First edition. An elegant anonymous satire on fashionable dress for women, directed especially against the painful pursuit of an artificial figure: ‘Come here, you two… (more)

    First edition. An elegant anonymous satire on fashionable dress for women, directed especially against the painful pursuit of an artificial figure: ‘Come here, you two girls, that look full in my face, / And you that so often are turning your back [the Graces], / Put on these cork rumps, and then tighten your stays / ‘Till your hips, and your ribs, and the strings themselves crack. / Can ye speak? can ye breathe? - Not a word - Then ‘twill do. / You have often dress’d me, and for once I’ll dress you.’ Jackson, p. 59.

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  • Contes pour les Bibliophiles. by UZANNE, Octave and Albert ROBIDA. UZANNE, Octave and Albert ROBIDA. ~ Contes pour les Bibliophiles. Paris: Ancienne Maison Quantin, Librairies-imprimeries réunies, 1895.
    First edition. Jointly authored with Robida, who also provided the illustrations, Contes pour les Bibliophiles contains Uzanne’s prescient essay ‘La Fin des livres’. This remarkable… (more)

    First edition. Jointly authored with Robida, who also provided the illustrations, Contes pour les Bibliophiles contains Uzanne’s prescient essay ‘La Fin des livres’. This remarkable text has been eagerly discussed by commentators on the interface between traditional and electronic book. Like many contempories Uzanne and Robida had been enthralled by inventions such as Edison’s phonograph and Ader’s ‘théatrophone’ and they predicted fundamental shifts in the consumption of literature in their wake. ‘La Fin des livres’ describes (and illustrates) wonderful devices for the consumption of audiobooks in the home and in public places, suggesting that they would become as straightforward as turning on a tap. The library of the future would in turn become a roomful of recorded cylinders, and publishers would be required to register the voices of their authors by way of copyright.

    What would such a democratization of the word do to the printed book? Uzanne’s response was to look at current production of books and insist that books would not die provided they remained objects of beauty and desire worthy of the attention of bibliophiles. The wonderful cover illustrations and typography are by George Auriol, member of the Chat Noir circle and friend of Erik Satie.

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  • A letter from the Reverend Mr **** **** to A**** D****, Esq. by (ROMAINE, William). (ROMAINE, William). ~ A letter from the Reverend Mr **** **** to A**** D****, Esq. [London?]: Prnited [sic] in the year, 1772.
    Sole edition. ‘And Enoch walked with God. Gen. V. 24.’ Apparently by an anonymous follower of the evangelical Church of England preacher, William Romaine —… (more)

    Sole edition. ‘And Enoch walked with God. Gen. V. 24.’ Apparently by an anonymous follower of the evangelical Church of England preacher, William Romaine — a spiritual meditation occasioned by a daily walk — a trope clearly derived from Romaine’s spiritual classic The Walk of Faith (1771), a work recommended in a postscript here: ‘Reader, if the perusal of this letter has been profitable unto you, and you desire to be further instructed how to live by Faith, and walk humbly and happily with your God, ---- I would recommend to you a Treatise of the Life of Faith, and one of the Walk of Faith; both by the Rev. Romaine Rector of St. Ann Blackfriars...’

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  • The Commercial Year Book of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce (with which is incorporated Kingstown) with classified Trade Indices in English, French, Russian, and Spanish and Trade Mark Section. [KING IRVINE, R. editor]. by (DUBLIN). (DUBLIN). ~ The Commercial Year Book of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce (with which is incorporated Kingstown) with classified Trade Indices in English, French, Russian, and Spanish and Trade Mark Section. [KING IRVINE, R. editor]. London and Derby: Bemrose & Sons Limited, 1917.
    First and only edition, issued the year after the Easter Rising, showing hundreds of Dublin businesses seeking exports all over the world. Among the many… (more)

    First and only edition, issued the year after the Easter Rising, showing hundreds of Dublin businesses seeking exports all over the world. Among the many listings and advertisements for brewers, distillers, foundries, printers, publishers, linen manufacturers, shipyards, engineers and so on, are found two one-third page adverts for the Yeats sisters’ Cuala Industries and the Dun Emer Guild. The two firms had been founded under the Dun Emer name by Elizabeth and Lily Yeats in 1902 producing Arts and Crafts printing, embroidery, rugs and tapestry, before dividing in 1904. The Cuala advert shows the Yeats’s Churchtown bungalow and reads: ‘Embroidery—Lily Yeats. Hand Press—Elizabeth C. Yeats. Editor of the Press—W.B. Yeats.’ The Dun Emer advert shows a woman working at a loom and offers ‘Hand-woven Carpets & Tapestries, Embroideries, Enamels, Bookbinding’.

    There are also historical and topographical accounts of the city. This was the first appearance of the Dublin Year Book and it was apparently not reprinted. Scarce. Worldcat lists US copies at NYPL, Illinois, Kansas, Chapel Hill and South Carolina. We also find copies at the University of Cork, UCD, LSE and BL.

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  • Avec les Alcooliques anonymes. by KESSEL, Joseph. KESSEL, Joseph. ~ Avec les Alcooliques anonymes. Paris: Gallimard, 1960.
    First edition.

    – Je m’appelle Frank T… et je suis un alcoolique.
    – Je m’appelle Elizabeth F… et je suis une alcoolique.

    The work which… (more)

    First edition.

    – Je m’appelle Frank T… et je suis un alcoolique.
    – Je m’appelle Elizabeth F… et je suis une alcoolique.

    The work which was instrumental in establishing Alcoholics Anonymous in France. A note following the title reads: ‘Les personnes quie seraient intéressées par les “Alcooliques anonymes” peuvent s’addresser aux ALCOOLIQUES ANONYMES, groupe des Paris, 65, quai d’Orsay’ [the Amercian Church in Paris, still a meeting point for the organisation].

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  • Souvenirs sténographiques. Ou, Traité de la Sténographie considérée dans tous ses développements. by (STENOGRAPHY). Antoine (STENOGRAPHY). Antoine ~ Souvenirs sténographiques. Ou, Traité de la Sténographie considérée dans tous ses développements. [?Paris:] 1825-[6]
    A complete course teaching stenography, or the art of writing ‘aussi vite que la parole’, finely written with numerous thumbnail drawings. Divided into four parts… (more)

    A complete course teaching stenography, or the art of writing ‘aussi vite que la parole’, finely written with numerous thumbnail drawings. Divided into four parts (introduction, pronunciation, punctuation and an atlas) with an errata, a table of contents and two sheets of stenographic examples or exercises.

    In the atlas dedicated to the description of the stenographic signs in 13 charts, the last 13 gather 51 finelyy drawn vignettes giving the figurative equivalent of the stenographic signs and their pronunciation: the links of a chain for an open ‘a’ (as in anneaux), a radiating halo for an ‘o’ (as in oréole), a drunkard for the ‘i’ (ivrogne), a gallows for the ‘p’ (potence), a cat for the ‘ch’ (chat), and so on, including a funnel, lyre, clock, umbrella, falls, arrow and gondola, the morphology of the signs given an ideogrammatic cue as a mnemonic. The whole represents a complete teaching system aimed at the aspiring stenographer,

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  • ou la Jeu à la mode. by LE DIABLE COULEUR DE ROSE LE DIABLE COULEUR DE ROSE ~ ou la Jeu à la mode. Paris: Chez Janet, [ 1812 or 1813].
    First edition of the first French book on the diabolo or devil sticks, and thus probably the first European book on the subject. The diabolo… (more)

    First edition of the first French book on the diabolo or devil sticks, and thus probably the first European book on the subject. The diabolo craze swept Paris in 1812, all the illustrations here are of young men and women at play with this juggling toy. Besides the first two chansons, on a diabolo theme the texts here are typical of other contemporary almanacs, and the last 14 pages contain an almanac for 1813. Derived from an ancient Chinese toy it was the French who first embraced it as a fashionable activity in the early nineteenth century.

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  • Librairie pour la Jeunesse. En vente ici. Superbes livres d’Etrennes illustrés. by (JUVENILE). RIGAUD, Amable, publisher. (JUVENILE). RIGAUD, Amable, publisher. ~ Librairie pour la Jeunesse. En vente ici. Superbes livres d’Etrennes illustrés. Paris: Amable Rigaud, [c. 1860]
    A very rare publisher’s advert for children’s books, issued on behalf of Amable Rigaud (a pseudonym of children’s author and publisher Charles de Ribelle), publisher… (more)

    A very rare publisher’s advert for children’s books, issued on behalf of Amable Rigaud (a pseudonym of children’s author and publisher Charles de Ribelle), publisher at 50 rue Sainte Anne, Paris. Rigaud was prolific from around 1859 to 1880 and this fine lithograph appears to date from the early part of this period. It lists 15 different title all published around 1859-61 including Histoire des siècles. Des Découvertes et inventions, Livre des jeunes personnes vertueuses, Le grand Alphabet pittoresque de la jeunesse, Le Monde et se merveilles and Histoire des animaux célèbres. Born in 1810 Ribelle had also founded a juvenile magazine Journal des enfants.

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  • Phonographie de l’amour, aggravée d’un commentaire au crayon par Lucien Métivet. by ‘GRYPERL’ [pseudonym of Georges Boyer]. Lucien MÉTIVET, illustrator. ‘GRYPERL’ [pseudonym of Georges Boyer]. Lucien MÉTIVET, illustrator. ~ Phonographie de l’amour, aggravée d’un commentaire au crayon par Lucien Métivet. Paris: Paul Ollendorff, 1895.
    Sole edition, one of 50 copies on chine. An illustrated collection of epithets on love and the relationships between men and women, a witty reflection… (more)

    Sole edition, one of 50 copies on chine. An illustrated collection of epithets on love and the relationships between men and women, a witty reflection of the sexual politics of fin-de-siècle Paris. The conceit of the title, and the charming accompanying vignette, involves communication (or perhaps miscommunication) via headphones and a phonographic machine operated by Cupid. It is a nice example of the contemporary fascination with the potential of electronic communications, with echoes of the science-fiction fantasy La Fin des livres by Albert Robida published in the same year, in which a new world of literature was a network of wires and headphones and of the Theatrophone apparatus recently exhibited at the Paris exhibitions. Worldcat lists 3 copies only: Bibliothèque nationale, British Library and Yale.

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