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"Who is the most important person I've ever met in a signing queue & the first person ever to see merit in Harry Potter. With huge [underlined 4 times] thanks. J.K. Rowling": First Edition, First Printing of J.K. Rowling's Rare First Book Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone; Inscribed by Her to Bryony Evens
London: Bloomsbury, 1997.
First edition, first printing of the rarest book in the Harry Potter series with ‘Joanne Rowling’ for ‘J.K. Rowling’ and Thomas Taylor1997 on the copyright page and “1 wand” listed twice (as the first item and last item) on the ‘Other Equipment’ list on page 53. Octavo, original laminated pictorial boards, without a dust jacket as issued. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the dedication page, “to Bryony – who is the most important person I’ve ever met in a signing queue & the first person ever to see merit in Harry Potter. With huge [underlined 4 times] thanks. J.K. Rowling.” The recipient, Bryony Evens was one of the first people to read the opening chapters of Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone, the first to recognize the work’s inherent value, and absolutely the most instrumental figure in getting the book published. Working at the time at Christopher Little Literary Agency in Scotland, Evens was the first point of contact in receiving and sorting unsolicited manuscripts. Evens read Rowling’s submission of the first three chapters of the book and passed it along to Little, who approved that she obtain the full manuscript and promote it to suitable publishers. Given a small budget, Evens was only able to print three manuscripts to pitch to publishing houses and, after twelve months and twelve rejections, was finally given the green light by editor Barry Cunningham from Bloomsbury in London. Bloomsbury published the book on June 26, 1997. A year later, Bryony attended a Rowling book signing event where Rowling warmly inscribed the present volume. In near fine condition with a touch of rubbing to the extremities. Only 500 copies of the first printing were published, with over half making being sent directly to libraries. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional association and effusive inscription to the person who first recognized the value of Harry Potter.
Price: $350,000.00 Item Number: 115640
"To Jack L. Warner - Thank you for your courage and for a magnificent picture - with my profound gratitude": First Edition of the Ayn Rand's Magnum Opus The Fountainhead; Inscribed by Her to Jack Warner
Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1943.
First edition, first issue with first edition stated on the copyright page of the author’s first major novel, as well as her first best-seller. Octavo, original red cloth. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Jack L. Warner – Thank you for your courage and for a magnificent picture – with my profound gratitude – Ayn Rand. January 7, 1949.” The recipient, Jack Warner, was the co-founder, president, and driving force behind the Warner Bros. Studios. His career spanned some 45 years, its duration surpassing that of any other of the seminal Hollywood studio moguls. Rand sold the film rights to Warner several years earlier with the contractual proviso that she would provide the screenplay, which would be unalterable. In fact, the director wanted changes, but Warner supported the author and honored the contract. This book’s inscription, clearly referring to this, was presented about a half year prior to the film’s release. Of Rand’s fiction, The Fountainhead is generally conceded to be her most important and enduring work, a passionate portrait of uncompromising individualism. In the decades since its debut, the film has gained the critical acceptance, even the acclaim, that initially evaded it. Near fine in a near fine first-issue dust jacket with a touch of rubbing and no fading to the spine, which is endemic to this title. One of the finest association copies possible, linking the famed author with the legendary founder of Warner Brothers and producer of the iconic film.
Price: $250,000.00 Item Number: 125425
First Edition, First Printing of J.K. Rowling's Rare First Book Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
London: Bloomsbury, 1997.
First edition, first printing with all the prerequisite first issue points called for (including “wand” listed twice on page 53). Octavo, original illustrated boards, without a dust jacket as issued. In fine condition. Only 500 copies of the first printing were published, with over half making their way to libraries. An exceptional example, easily one of the nice examples extant.
Price: $225,000.00 Item Number: 124950
"You are one of the most special people to me, and you have meant so much to my life": Exceptionally Rare collection of original Harper Lee drawings, paintings and letters with a first edition of To Kill A Mockingbird in the scarce first issue dust jacket; inscribed by Lee to close colleague and friend Charles Weldon Carruth
Philadelphia & New York: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1960.
First edition of perhaps the most important American novel of the 20th century, inscribed by Harper Lee to a close college friend and with a scarce archive of drawings and letters exchanged between the two. Octavo, original green cloth backed brown boards, titles to spine in gilt. Association copy, inscribed by Harper Lee to close University of Alabama college friend, Charles Weldon Carruth, “To my dear friend Charles, with love always — Harper Lee.” In the fall term of 1945, Lee and Carruth both enrolled in a Shakespeare course taught by one of the University of Alabama’s most famous faculty members, Hudson Strode, who directed the school’s theatre troupe and taught several courses in theatre and creative-writing. At the University of Alabama, Lee contributed a regular column to the campus newspaper, ‘Caustic Comments for Crimson White’, as well as many articles to the university’s humor magazine, Rammer Jammer, of which she became editor in chief in 1946. Lee ultimately dropped out of college before graduation and moved to Manhattan in 1949 to pursue writing as a career; Carruth later moved to New York City as well, where he worked as a radio producer before becoming a writer and editor for the Catholic News. Near fine in the rare first-issue dust jacket which is in very good condition.
Accompanied by an exceptionally rare archive of pencil and ink drawings sketched by Lee of Carruth, caricatures drawn by her while attending Strode’s Shakespeare courses, an original acrylic portrait by Lee of Carruth inscribed by her on the verso “From Nelle Lee, Dec 25, 1952”, and three letters written by Lee to Carruth regarding her thoughts on her hometown of Monroeville, Alabama.
Measuring 8 inches by 10 inches on ruled sheets of paper, the 11 drawings, four of which are signed by Lee “NLee”, include 5 realist studies of Carruth in various poses and six captioned caricatures in ink depicting him as Shakespearean leads including: a portrayal of Shylock as a pawn shop owner and “Money Lender Extraordinaire: Easy Loans – Pound of Flesh Compounded Semi-Annually”, King Lear standing on the cliffs of Dover with a price tag (“$3.98”) hanging from his cloak, Hamlet standing on a diving board with Yorick’s skull and a bloody knife hidden behind his back (performed at the “Old Vic”), Julius Caesar smoking a pipe while “contemplating the infinite”; Othello towering over an angel and devil; Cassius dripping dry outside the Roman baths where “you must have a ticket before you bathe”, Malvolio, “the impatient one,” crossing his legs while “waiting to go to the jakes”, and Carruth dressed as an unidentified female character with Carruth’s note, “Fall Quarter/ Univ. Ala 1945”. Additionally included is a caricature of Professor Strode wearing the breeches and curly-toed shoes of a court jester with his book “Timeless Mexico” in one hand and Yorick’s skull in the other, signed “Nelle Lee” and dated “11/8/45.”
Showcasing not only the depth, but also the length of Lee and Carruth’s friendship, the three letters include a letter written by Lee to Carruth in 1991 regarding his retirement, “My beloved Charlie, I can’t think of anyone to whom these words apply more — in your work, in your life — ‘Well done, thou good and faithful servant.’ …You are one of the most special people to me, and you have meant so much to my life.” Two years later, in January 1993, the second letter thanks him for a “…lovely Christmas remembrance and, farther back, your memoir of Winston County [Alabama, where Carruth was born].” Despairing the changes occurring in her hometown, she continues, “You remember the Faulknerian prophecy — the Snopeses shall inherit the earth? They’ve already taken over Monroeville … they are trying to turn Harper Lee into a tourist attraction like Graceland or Elvis.” She goes on to discuss the restoration of the Old Courthouse, and remarks that she “nearly had a fit” after seeing a billboard featuring a mockingbird, describing it as “in indescribable taste” and “a fraud on the public”. “[They] say they are doing this to honor me. What they are doing … [is] embarrassing me beyond endurance … So keep an eye out for a small place that will hold 10,000 books … is near grocery stores & hospitals, and you! … We can look at each other and celebrate our longevity.” Signed by Lee as the Queen Victoria, “Your unamused but loving, Victoria R & I.” Lee often gave herself nicknames when signing letters: “Francesca da Rimini,” one of Dante’s damned, when she felt hopeless; “E. Bouverie Pusey,” the Anglican theologian, when she got worked up about some finer points of theology; and “Victoria R/I”—the Queen Empress Victoria—when she felt royal and moody.
A remarkable collection offering unprecedented insight into the education, broad talents, unique sense of humor, and deep personal thoughts regarding the reception of the most important work of one of America’s most respected and enigmatic writers.
Price: $100,000.00 Item Number: 1115260
London: Printed for H. Herringman, and are to be sold by Joseph Knight and Francis Saunders, 1685.
First edition of the Fourth Folio of Shakespeare. Bound in full brown morocco, elaborately gilt-decorated spine. The fourth folio is the final and most magnificent of the four 17th-century folio editions of Shakespeare’s plays. The Fourth Folio “contains the additional seven plays that first appeared in the 1663 edition [including the authentic Pericles, Prince of Tyre], as well as a good deal of correction and modernization of the text designed to make it easier to read and understand” (Folger’s Choice). Old paper repair to verso of title-page, several other very minor paper repairs. Some browning and minimal staining, a very good example, facsimile frontispiece. As in some other copies, as Greg notes, number of errors in signatures have been corrected in manuscript, presumably at the time of publication. Although there is no accurate census of the number of folios still extant today, it is believed that copies of each printing number only in the hundreds. The rarest form of the fourth folio. This is the rare Knight and Saunders issue, with their names on the title-page. W. W. Greg observes, “Since the title is entirely reset it is presumably a cancel printed after the volume was complete and perhaps republished, and designed for those copies that Herringman chose to issue through his own booksellers” (Greg III, 1121). In 1684, Herringman turned over the retail side of his business to Francis Saunders and his partner Joseph Knight. Fourth Folios almost invariably bear the imprints “Herringman-Brewster-Bentley” or “Herringman-Brewster-Chiswell-Bentley.”
Price: $100,000.00 Item Number: 5605
"This little book has more artistic dignity than any other book that has been written by an American about the period of the war": FIRST EDITION OF ERNEST HEMINGWAY'S IN OUR TIME, ONE OF ONLY 170 COPIES PRINTED at the Three Mountains Press and for sale at Shakespeare and Company
Printed at the Three Mountains Press and for sale at Shakespeare & Company: Paris, 1924.
First edition of Hemingway’s second published work, one of 170 numbered copies printed on Rives hand-made paper, this is number 90. Quarto, original tan printed boards with black lettering and publisher’s device printed over a collage of red-lettered facsimile newspaper items, woodcut frontispiece portrait of Hemingway from a portrait by Henry Strater, all edges uncut. In fine condition. Housed in a custom folding cloth chemise and half morocco slipcase with splitting to the chemise. One of Hemingway’s rarest books, second only to Three Stories and Ten Poems both because of the limited number of copies printed and its fragile nature. A superior example.
Price: $80,000.00 Item Number: 125303
"Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit em, but remember its a sin to kill a mockingbird"; First edition of To Kill A Mockingbird; Signed by Harper Lee and Truman Capote
Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1960.
First edition of Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel which had an initial first printing of 5,000 copies. Octavo, original green cloth backed brown boards, titles to spine in gilt. Signed by both Harper Lee and Truman Capote on the front free endpaper. Truman Capote’s friendship with Harper Lee began in the summer of 1929 when the two became next door neighbors in Monroeville, Alabama; both were the age of five. They shared a love of reading and began collaborating when Lee was gifted a typewriter by her father as a child. Lee drew on their friendship as inspiration for the characters Lee and Scout in her masterpiece To Kill A Mockingbird; Capote based his tomboy character Idabel Thompkins in his first novel Other Voices, Other Rooms on Lee. They worked together on Capote’s true crime novel, In Cold Blood; Lee acted as his ‘assistant reasearchist’ and edited the final draft of the book. Upon its publication in 1965, Capote failed to acknowledge Lee’s contributions to the book, after which their relationship was never the same. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with light rubbing and wear to the extremities. Jacket design by Shirley Smith. Photograph by Truman Capote. Housed in a custom full morocco clamshell box. Exceptionally rare, this is the first example we have seen signed by both Lee and Capote.
Price: $78,000.00 Item Number: 73100
“When life itself seems lunatic, who knows where madness lies? Perhaps to be too practical is madness. To surrender dreams — this may be madness": Rare first complete English edition of Cervantes' masterpiece Don Quixote
The History of Don-Quixote. The First Parte. The Second Part of the History of the Valorous and Witty Knight-Errant, Don Quixote of the Mancha. Written in Spanish by Michael Cervantes: and now translated into English.
London: Edward Blount, 1620.
Exceedingly rare first complete edition in English of Cervantes’ masterpiece comprising the second edition of the first part and the first edition of the second part. Small octavo, 2 volumes bound in full calf with red morocco spine labels lettered in gilt, gilt turn-ins, frontispiece portrait of the author to Vol. I, engraved headpieces, tailpieces and initials. Translated from the original Spanish by Thomas Shelton, his first English translation published in 1612 was the first translation in any language, and took him only forty days to complete. The true first edition of Don Quixote was published in Madrid by Francisco de Robles in two parts in 1605 and 1614. The first part of Shelton’s first English version was published in 1612 with the second part added in 1620, both published in quarto. The present edition is the first complete edition published in the English language with both the first and second parts published and sold simultaneously. Volume one is a second edition with the text block trimmed as usual, in very good condition. Volume two is a first edition, lacking the engraved title as with many copies, and believed to be indicative of an earlier state. “Duff suggested that the reason this plate is lacking in so many copies of the second part is because it was not prepared until after a good many copies had been sold without it” (Pforzheimer 140; Grolier Langland to Wither 213) Early ownership signature, most likely Herbert Lunsford located at the head of the errata sheet. Sir Herbert Lunsford (c. 1610-1664) was a military figure and brother to Thomas Lunsford, who is reputed to have been a ruthless pirate and fearless adventurer. There are some who believe that these brothers, along with their brother Henry, served as the models for the Three Musketeers. Catalog entry, handwritten note, and newspaper clipping containing bibliographical information affixed to verso of front board. An exceptional example of this rarity, very rare to find complete.
Price: $75,000.00 Item Number: 117895
“Integrity is the ability to stand by an idea": First Edition of the Ayn Rand's Magnum Opus The Fountainhead; Inscribed by Her
Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1943.
First edition, first issue with first edition stated on the copyright page of the author’s first major novel, as well as her first best-seller. Octavo, original red cloth. Association copy, inscribed by the author in the year of publication on the front free endpaper, “To Gertrude Lynneberg- – with my best wishes for long years of happiness- Ayn Rand November 16, 1943.” The recipient, Gertrude Lynneberg was the sister-in- law to Linda Lynneberg, also known as Aslaug Lynneberg, a lifelong friend of Rand. Near fine in a very good first issue dust jacket with some chips and wear. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. First editions in the original dust jacket are uncommon, association copies rare.
Price: $75,000.00 Item Number: 121447
“The supreme question about a work of art is out of how deep a life does it spring”: First Edition of James Joyce's masterpiece Ulysses; number 276 of 750 Numbered Copies
Paris: Shakespeare and Company, 1922.
First edition of Joyce’s masterpiece, one of 750 numbered copies printed on handmade paper from a total edition of 1000 copies, this is number number 276. Thick quarto, original blue and white wrappers. In near fine condition, square and tight with a touch of rubbing to the crown and foot of the spine. Housed in a custom slipcase. An exceptional example.
Price: $75,000.00 Item Number: 126933
"ALL 'CLASSES' FOR EXPERIENCE AND LEARNING – BUT I DO PREFER 'NON-LITERARY' PEOPLE LIKE WAITERS, TRUCKDRIVERS, GIRLS, CARPENTERS, CLAM DIGGERS, RAILROAD MEN, SEA MEN, OLD MILLIONAIRES, ALL THE 'CHARACTERS'”; SCARCE JACK KEROUAC AUTOGRAPHED SIGNED LETTER
Jack Kerouac’s candid handwritten reply to a young man’s questions about being a “Beatnik,” his life philosophy, his thoughts on Montana, and more. Students in Robert Dodd’s ninth-grade class were given an assignment to contact their favorite writer with their own unique series of questions relating specifically to that writer. The young Dodd chose Jack Kerouac, and the author replied at length to his questionnaire, which includes queries about his classification as a “Beatnik” (his answer: “I never was a Beatnik – it was the newspapers and critics who tagged that label on me….”), life philosophy (“My philosophy is ‘No Philosophy,’ just ‘Things-As-They-Are’”), career goals (“Be a great writer making everybody believe in Heaven”), the ideal way of life (“Hermit in the woods…”), his thoughts on fame (“My name is like Crackerjacks, famous, but very few people buy my books…”), and segregation (“[t]he Irish and Italians of Massachusetts never paraded in protest, just worked hard and made it”). Interestingly, Kerouac is most expansive in response to the final question: whether he has visited Montana. His answer fills three-quarters of the page, beginning: “Great day, my favorite state! – I wrote about Montana in ‘On the Road’ but the publishers took it out behind my back… I stayed one night, but up all night, in a saloon in Butte, to keep out of the 40-below February cold, among sheep ranchers playing poker.” Two pages with Dodd’s questions type-written and Kerouac’s responses handwritten in full. The letter reads in full, “To Robert Dodd from Jack Kerouac Feb. 28th 1964.” 1. In Town and the Country (Kerouac crosses out Country for City) your style of writing is much different from The Lonesome Traveler. Do you change your style with the type of story? Kerouac responds: “‘The Town and the City’ was my first, youngman novel when I was just starting out, trying to write like Thomas Wolfe – ‘Lonesome Traveler’ is a product of my own style which I developed in later years, ‘spontaneous writing’ with no looking back, in my own laws of story telling – OUTERSPACE PROSE! My own original invention.” 2. Many people have referred to you as a “beatnik” or a “way out” writer. Do you feel this way about yourself? “‘Way-out’ yes, but I never was a beatnik – it was the newspapers and critics who tagged that label on me – I never had a beard, never wore sandals, avoided the company of Bohemians and their politics and always had a job on the road like in ‘Lonesome T.’ on railroad, ships etc.” 3. Some people refer to your thinking as existentialism where man makes his own destiny. Just what is your philosophy of life? “My philosophy now is “no-philosophy,” just “Things – As – They – Are”. 4. What goal are you trying to reach in your career? “Be a great writer making everybody believe in Heaven.” 5. What do you think is the ideal way of life? “Hermit in the woods, one-room cabin, wood stove, oil lamp, books, food, outhouse, no electricity, just creek or brook water, sleep, hiking, nothing-to-do-(Chinese Wu Wei).” 6. Do you like fame or would you rather write and have only your works become famous? “My name is like Crackerjacks, famous, but very few people buy my books because they’ve been told by newspapers and critics that I’m crazy, so I’m almost broke now 1964 – I hate fame without fortune, which is really INFAMY AND RIDICULE, in my case.” 7. From your many books I see that you must travel a lot. Do you try to mix in with different classes or do you stick to one? “All ‘classes’ for experience and learning – but I do prefer ‘non-literary’ people like waiters, truckdrivers, girls, carpenters, clam diggers, railroad men, sea men, old millionaires, all the ‘characters’.” 8. Does the West coast influence an author’s style differently than the East coast? “No – I and the “Beats” came from the East Coast and just rode out there, no special difference in style except a little on subject matter, i.e. open-spaces country.” 9. What is your favorite subject matter? “That everybody goes to Heaven – read “Visions of Gerard” (about Lowell in 1926).” 10. Here in Boston there is much controversy over segregation of the negroes. What is your stand on the issue? “They need jobs, naturally, and education for better jobs – But the Irish and Italians of Massachusetts never paraded in protest, just worked harder, and made it.” 11. Do you plan to visit the East coast, especially the Boston area soon? “Yeh – “lecture” dinner at Harvard soon – I live in Long Island since 1958 so I can’t exactly “visit” the Ease Coast, hey,” – 12. Have you ever been to Montana and, if you have, what were your views on it? “Great day, my favorite state! – I wrote about Montana in “On the Road” but the publishers took it out behind my back – I stayed one night, up all night, in a saloon in Butte, to keep out of the 40- below February cold, among sheep ranchers playing poker (with sheep dogs at their feet), red-eyed drunken Indians drinking out of bottles in the john, Chinese gamblers, women, cowboys, miners – And outside of Butte, at Three Forks Montana, I saw the source of the Missouri River in the snowy valley – I also heard wolves howl in the Bitterroot Mountains – But I didn’t like Missoula much (skiers etc.) – I would like to have a summer cabin in Montana some day, the last truly “Western” state. Sincerely, Jack Kerouac.” In near fine condition. Matted and framed. The entire piece measures 31 inches by 18 inches. A rare and intimate glimpse into the thought an literary progression of one of the formative writers of the 20th century.
Price: $75,000.00 Item Number: 79098
Barnstable, MA: Crane’s Duplicating Service, for J.B. Lippincott Company,, 1960.
Rare uncorrected proof of the first edition of Lee’s classic Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Octavo, original spiral-bound printed wrappers marked in type “uncorrected proof,” printed and typed label pasted on upper cover. In the over sixty years since publication only one other proof has surfaced and it was badly stained and read, much inferior to this example. In near fine condition. Originally published on July 11th, 1960, it has since been translated into 40 languages, and has sold more than 30 million copies. An exceptional example of this rarity, produced prior to it status as one of the greatest American novels of the twentieth century.
Price: $75,000.00 Item Number: 123892
London: George Newnes, Limited, 1901.
First edition, first issue binding of Wells’ classic work. Octavo, original cloth, 12 plates by by Claude Shepperson. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with a touch of shelfwear. Exceptionally rare in the original dust jacket, especially in this condition.
Price: $72,000.00 Item Number: 124595
"It is not down on any map; true places never are": Rare First Edition Of Herman Melville's Moby Dick
New York: Harper & Brothers, 1851.
First edition, first issue binding, with the circular Harper’s device of Melville’s masterpiece. Octavo, original purple-brown cloth (BAL’s A grain), covers stamped in blind with the publisher’s circular device at the center within a heavy blind rule frame, original orange-coated endpapers. In near fine condition with some of the usual light foxing and light shelfwear to the spine tips. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A completely unrestored example of this cornerstone. A superior example.
Price: $65,000.00 Item Number: 99735
“The truth may be stretched thin, but it never breaks, and it always surfaces above lies, as oil floats on water": Rare first part of the first complete edition of Cervantes' masterpiece Don Quixote; the earliest extant edition printed in Barcelona
Barcelona: Bautista Sorita, for Miguel Gracián, 1617.
The earliest extant Barcelona edition of Cervantes’ masterpiece, and the first part of the first complete edition of Don Quixote. Small octavo, bound in full contemporary calf with gilt titles and elaborate gilt tooling to the spine, gilt turn-ins, marbled endpapers, all edges red, illustrated title page. The second part of the first complete edition was printed simultaneously by Sebastián Matevad and sold as a complete set with the present volume by Miguel Gracián, Juan Simón and Rafael Vives. Small stamp and inscription to the title page. Bookplate to the pastedown. Scarce and desirable.
Price: $60,000.00 Item Number: 117012
"If you liked The Great Gatsby, for God's sake read this. Gatsby was a tour de force but this is a confession of faith": First Edition of Tender Is the Night; Inscribed by F. Scott Fitzgerald
New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1934.
First edition of the work which Fitzgerald considered to be his finest. Octavo, original green cloth. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “For the unknown, unmet parents of Clare (note: double underlined). Knowing her, I hope you will find something to like in this present. Best wishes, F. Scott Fitzgerald.” A very good example with some wear to the crown and foot of the spine, extremities of the cloth in a very good unrestored first issue dust jacket that has some rubbing and wear. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell and chemise case.
Price: $58,000.00 Item Number: 3071
“What does the brain matter compared with the heart?”: First Edition of Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway; In the Rare Original Dust Jacket
London: Hogarth Press, 1925.
First edition of one of Woolf’s best-known novels, one of only 2000 copies. Octavo, original orange cloth. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with some light wear to the extremities. From the library of Virginia bibliophile and historian Christopher Clark Geest with his bookplate to the pastedown. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional example, scarce and desirable in the original dust jacket and in this condition.
Price: $56,000.00 Item Number: 99750
New York: Harper & Brothers, 1934.
First American edition and true first preceding the British edition by one year of Orwell’s first novel. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the verso of the front free endpaper to Mabel Fierz, “With very best wishes from Eric Blair.” It was Mabel Fierz who introduced Orwell to Leonard Moore (who would later become his literary agent) after salvaging the manuscript for Down and Out from the writer’s discarded papers. After first meeting Orwell in Southwold, Suffolk, Mabel and her husband Francis became close friends with the writer and often invited him to stay at their house in Golders Green. On one such occasion, Orwell gave Mabel the manuscript, which had just been rejected by Faber, and telling her to save only the paperclips, said she should throw it away. Instead she took it in person to Moore who in turn took it to Gollancz. In gratitude, thereafter Orwell presented Mabel with signed copies of all his published works. Mabel Fierz, authorial inscription, typed letter signed by Mabel’s son Adrian Fierz loosely inserted. Near fine in a very good dust jacket. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.
Price: $55,000.00 Item Number: 67096
"I am enormously pressed for time this vacation, and I am ever afraid no such thing will have been done by me in time to be of use to you": Rare autograph letter signed by J.R.R. Tolkien with his list of Old English Literature Questions with annotations and corrections in his hand
Rare autograph letter signed by the author of The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, J.R.R. Tolkien regarding a list of 50 questions he has composed examining Old English Literature. One page, entirely in Tolkien’s hand, the letter reads in full, “1 Alfred Street St. Giles Oxford Mar: 17th 1920. Dear Miss Duncan, I enclose a ‘mixed bag’ of 50 questions on the OE period – some of them on ‘Beowulf’ (exclusive of special points of commentary), some more general. A few may be of use to you (many are culled from past papers etc.: those of last year are marked). They are not intended to by models of clear questioning , but to suggest enquiries. The easily available critical writings that might help are all 150 few. I hoped some time to make out something like a select bibliography but I am enormously pressed for time this vacation, and I am ever afraid no such thing will have been done by me in time to be of use to you. I am yours sincerely JRR Tolkien.” Three pages, typewritten and composed of 50 questions, the questionnaire is titled “Old English Literature Questions” with several annotations and corrections in Tolkien’s hand, including to question 1. “A gluttonous race of Jutes and Angles, capable of no grand combinations: [Tolkien has added “lumbering about in potbellied equanimity] not dreaming of heroic toll, and silence, and endurance, such as lead to the high places of this universe, and the golden mountain tone where dwell the spirits of the dawn’ (Carlyle). How far would your reading of Old English poetry land you to modify this estimate?” to question 10. “What may we imagine the effect of the introduction of Christianity (and the [Tolkien has added “subseq.”] attitude of the Church) to have been upon the preservation of the legends (and ideals) of Germanic past?” and to question 28. “Do you agree that compared with ‘The Battle of Maldon’ (which celebrated complete defeat) ‘Brunanburh’ [Tolkien has added “which celebrated a great victory”] is merely competent laureate work that any well educated gentleman of the time could have turned out on conventional models? Can you account for it?” Tolkien has also added a 51st question in his hand at the conclusion of the questionnaire, “Give an account of one important ins. of English poetry. Indicate its value for our knowledge of the subject as a whole.” In fine condition. An extraordinary pairing, offering a unique glimpse into Tolkien’s broad literary knowledge and influences.
Price: $50,000.00 Item Number: 121974
Rare original artwork from Kahlil Gibran. Graphite on paper, signed and dated by Gibran. “K.G. 1926.” The piece measures 10.5 inches by 8 inches. Double matted and framed. The entire piece measures 17 inches by 15 inches. Provenance: Waverly, December 11, 1986, lot. 378; purchased by the present owner; Private Collection, Washington D.C.
Price: $50,000.00 Item Number: 119272
“People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for": First edition of To Kill A Mockingbird; Inscribed by Harper Lee
Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1960.
First edition of Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel which had an initial first printing of 5,000 copies. Octavo, original green cloth backed brown boards, titles to spine in gilt. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper in a contemporary hand, “To Jennie with my best wishes Nelle Lee.” The recipient must have been a person close to the author, as Lee reserved inscriptions using the name Nelle family members and close friends. Near fine in a near fine dust jacket with light rubbing and wear to the extremities. Jacket design by Shirley Smith. Photograph of Lee on the back panel by Truman Capote. Housed in a custom full morocco clamshell box.
Price: $50,000.00 Item Number: 99740
"The truth is rarely pure and never simple": Signed limited large-paper edition of The Importance of Being Earnest
London: Leonard Smithers and Co, 1899.
Signed limited large-paper edition of the author’s masterpiece, number 68 of 100 copies signed by Oscar Wilde on the limitation page. Octavo, original pale purple cloth, gilt titles to the spine, gilt floral motifs from designs by Charles Shannon on spine and covers, edges untrimmed. Presentation copy, with an autograph letter signed by the third and final wife of Nobel Prize-winning playwright Eugene O’Neill, actress Carlotta Monterey O’Neill, to stage actor Harrison K. Ford laid in which reads, “To Harrison Ford Do hope you will enjoy this!- All good wishes Carlotta Monterey O’Neill Dec 6th 31 1095 Park Ave.-” From the library of Harrison K. Ford with his bookplate to the front pastedown. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. In near fine condition. An exceptional example with noted provenance.
Price: $50,000.00 Item Number: 110755
“AMERICA’S SECOND DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE”: RARE FIRST EDITION OF WALT WHITMAN’S LEAVES OF GRASS, THE MOST IMPORTANT AND INFLUENTIAL VOLUME OF AMERICAN POETRY
Brooklyn, New York: For the author by Andrew & James Rome, 1855.
First edition of the most important volume in American poetry, which Whitman personally financed, supervised and even in some sections hand-set the type for the small printing of 795 copies. Small folio, frontispiece engraved portrait of the author by Hollyer after the daguerreotype by Gabriel Harrison, mounted opposite the title, bound in three quarters morocco over marbled boards by MacDonald, New York, gilt titles and tooling to the spine, marbled endpapers. In near fine condition. Housed in a custom full morocco clamshell chemise.
Price: $50,000.00 Item Number: 108540
"The first American bestseller": Exceedingly Rare first edition of Susanna Haswell Rowson's Charlotte: A Tale of Truth
Philadelphia: Printed by D. Humphreys for M. Carey, 1794.
Exceedingly rare first American edition (and the earliest obtainable example) of the first American bestseller. Octavo, two volumes bound into one in three quarter calf over marbled boards, morocco spine label lettered in gilt, marbled endpapers. Although it was preceded by the first English edition published in 1791, no examples of the first English edition have been traced at auction. In very good condition. Bookplate to the pastedown, bibliographic description tipped in. Housed in a custom cloth chemise and half morocco clamshell slipcase. Exceedingly rare with only one other example of the first American edition traced at auction in the last 75 years.
Price: $50,000.00 Item Number: 125183
“The problem with the world is that everyone is a few drinks behind”: First Edition of one of the earliest and most influential detective novels ever written; Dashiell hammett's the maltese falcon in the rare original dust jacket
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1930.
First edition of one of the earliest and most influential detective novels ever written. Octavo, original cloth. Fine in a near fine first-issue dust jacket priced at 2.00 with the dust-jacket blurb quotes Joseph Shaw, editor of Black Mask, “We want to go on record as saying that this story is a marvelous piece of writing – the finest detective story it has ever been our privilege to read in book form, in any magazine of any kind, or in manuscript…” with some expert restoration. Rare and desirable, as most examples have been price-clipped.
Price: $50,000.00 Item Number: 122876
“Don't you know that everybody's got a Fairyland of their own?”: Rare First Edition of Mary Poppins; Signed by P.L. Travers
London: Gerald Howe, 1934.
First edition of this children’s classic. Octavo, original cloth, illustrated with 27 line cuts (13 full-page) and chapter tailpieces by Mary Shepard. Signed by P.L. Travers on the front free endpaper. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with light rubbing and wear to the crown of the spine. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Signed first editions are of exceptional rarity, with none having appeared at auction since the time of publication.
Price: $48,000.00 Item Number: 54060
"In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer": First American Edition of Albert Camus Classic Novel The Stranger; Inscribed by Him to fellow novelist Vincent Sheean
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1946.
First American edition of Camus’ first novel and masterpiece. Octavo, original beige cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the half-title page, “A Vincent Sheean pour le remercier de savoir si bien parler de Stendhal Sympathiquement Albert Camus.” The recipient, Vincent Sheean was an American journalist and novelist. Sheean’s most famous work was Personal History, which won one of the inaugural National Book Awards: the Most Distinguished Biography of 1935. Film producer Walter Wanger acquired the political memoir and made it the basis for his 1940 film production Foreign Correspondent, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Sheean wrote the narration for the feature-length documentary Crisis (1939) directed by Alexander Hammid and Herbert Kline. He translated Ève Curie’s biography of her mother, Madame Curie (1939), into English. Sheean wrote Oscar Hammerstein I: Life and Exploits of an Impresario (1955) as well as a controversial biography of Dorothy Thompson and Sinclair Lewis, Dorothy and Red (1963). He studied at the University of Chicago, becoming part of a literary circle which included Glenway Wescott, Yvor Winters, Elizabeth Madox Roberts and Janet Lewis while he was there. Near fine in a near fine dust jacket. Jacket design by Warren Chappell. Translated by Stuart Gilbert. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Presentation copies of The Stranger are rare, with only one appearing at auction in the past 70 years. Exceedingly scarce and desirable.
Price: $45,000.00 Item Number: 97850
"Taking the pledge will not make bad liquor good, but it will improve it": The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn; inscribed by Mark Twain
New York: Charles L. Webster and Company, 1886.
Early printing of Twain’s masterpiece, inscribed by Mark Twain. Octavo, bound in half buckram by Roycroft with paper labels to the spine, tissue-guarded frontispiece photogravure plate of Gerhardt’s bust of Clemens, one hundred and seventy-four illustrations by E. W. Kemble. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the title page, “To Mr. Garth W. Cate: Taking the pledge will not make bad liquor good, but it will improve it. Truly Yours, Mark Twain, Nov. 25/06.” With a lengthy letter of provenance dated October 14, 1964 and signed by the recipient which reads in part, “Dear Mr. Jacobs, If I had been younger and could have carried out a study of some of Mark Twain’s motives and acts, I never would have parted with my cherished old copy of the first printing of Huckleberry Finn. This was the first book given to me by my father… In 1906-1907 I was a lecture manager for Elbert Hubbard, the Sage of East Aurora, whose quasi-socialist group The Roycrofters was quite famous as an arts and crafts enter at East Aurora, New York. By that time the HUCK FINN was loose in its covers… Elbert Hubbard saw the book on my desk when I brought it in to have it rebound in the Roycroft Bindery. Said he, “No author could resist seeing such a well worn volume testifying to the delight it had given many readers. Why don’t you send it down to Mark Twain and ask him to inscribed it. I’ll sign and send Mark a few of my own books along with it, thus salting the mine for you.” So I sent HUCK back to its spiritual father, and when it returned I was somewhat shocked, having been sent to a temperance Sunday School by a whiskey fearing mother, to find that he had inscribed it “To Mr. Garth W. Cate – Taking the pledge will not make bad liquor good, but will improve it.” (Incidentally it was several years after that before I took my first drink. I am an abstainer today). Later on I was to marry a Christian Science practitioner, and when she saw this inscription she exclaimed: Why, that is the most immoral thing I ever saw! How could a great author send such a sentiment to a young man?” A careful search of Mark Twain’s writings revealed that he had a deep-seated lifetime aversion for pledges, especially when they had been obtained under pressure from those of an older generation. It seems when Mark was a boy in his early teens, his mother and aunt talked and pressured him into signing a pledge not to touch alcohol in any from. Later he was to refer to this as “A ball and chain clanking behind him down the years of time.” He hated such restrictions, especially when thrust upon him while immature.” In very good condition. With the original publisher’s decorated green cloth cover bound in and three rare portraits of Twain tipped in. With two further letters of provenance and several period Twain-related clippings adhered to several pages. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional presentation copy with noted provenance.
Price: $45,000.00 Item Number: 123083
"FAST BY THE ORACLE OF GOD, I THENCE INVOKE THY AID TO MY ADVENTUROUS SONG": FIRST EDITION OF JOHN MILTON'S MASTERPIECE PARADISE LOST
London: S. Simmons for S. Thomson, H. Mortlack, M. Walker, R. Boulter, 1668.
First edition of Milton’s masterpiece, “one of the greatest works of the human imagination” (DNB). Small octavo, bound in full contemporary sprinkled calf, smooth spine gilt, red morocco lettering-piece gilt. Title-page and text within ruled border; woodcut headpieces and initials opening each book. (Without blank A1 after cancel title, F3 with paper flaw affecting rule border and shoulder notes, tiny mostly marginal wormhole to a few leaves.) Provenance: Elizabeth Gordon (signature on title verso dated 1686); Robert Chilton Pearson (bookplate); Patrick & Julie Pearson (bookplate). With the cancel title-page corresponding to Amory’s fourth issue, title page with “Angel” in the imprint in italic, and no note from the printer to the reader. Amory’s subissue 4† with signature Z in the original setting with “illustrous” in line 109 of the seventh book, and with Vv reset reading “far” in line 2 ov Vvlr. Hugh Amory “Things Unattempted Yet” in The Book Collector, Spring 1983, pp. 41-66; see ESTC R13352; Grolier Wither to Prior 603; Pforzheimer 718; Wing M-2142. In near fine condition. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional example, rare and desirable.
Price: $45,000.00 Item Number: 119536
“A LADY'S IMAGINATION IS VERY RAPID; IT JUMPS FROM ADMIRATION TO LOVE, FROM LOVE TO MATRIMONY IN A MOMENT": RARE SECOND EDITION OF JANE AUSTEN'S PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
London: Printed for T. Egerton, 1813.
Rare second editions of all three volumes of Jane Austen’s masterpiece, published only months after the first edition. Octavo, three volumes bound in full mottled calf by Bartlett and Co. of Boston with morocco spine labels lettered in gilt, gilt titles and tooling to the spine in six compartments within raised gilt bands, double gilt ruling to the front and rear panels, gilt turn-ins and inner dentelles, all edges gilt, marbled endpapers, half-titles present. Titles supplied from a first edition copy. In near fine condition with light rubbing to the extremities. The text for this edition was re-set, with some variations within the page and to spelling and punctuation, but without corrections by Austen. Gilson A4. A highly desirable example of this landmark work in English literature.
Price: $42,500.00 Item Number: 127019
Signed “Charles Dickens (with a large flourish) Washington, D.C. Seventh February 1868.” Large oval portrait photograph measures 13 inches by 13 inches. Matted in a walnut frame which measures 24 inches by 27 inches. On his Washington tour Dickens met President Andrew Johnson and signed this photograph on the date of that meeting, February 7, which also happened to be Dickens’ birthday. He discussed in a letter to his friend and agent John Foster regarding that day, “This scrambling scribblement is resumed this morning, because I have just seen the President: who had sent to me very courteously asking me to make my own appointment. He is a man with a remarkable face.” From the Library of The Cosmos Club in Washington, D.C. Portrait photographs of this size signed by Dickens are exceptionally rare, especially with such noted provenance.
Price: $42,000.00 Item Number: 5825
“If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don’t have to worry about answers”: First Edition of Thomas Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow; Inscribed by Him
New York : The Viking Press, 1973.
First edition of Pynchon’s National Book Award-winning novel. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Herb Yellin- Regards, Thomas Pynchon.” The recipient Herb Yellin, was the publisher and founder of Lord John Press, considered by many to be one of the most important small presses of the 20th century. He formed a friendship with the author, Thomas Pynchon. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with some light wear to the extremities and a closed tear to the rear panel. Jacket design by Marc Getter. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Books signed and inscribed by Pynchon are one of the great rarities of twentieth century literature.
Price: $42,000.00 Item Number: 7202
"I'll get the hang of it": First edition of The Kit Book For Soldiers, Sailors and Marines; containing Salinger's first appearance in book form and signed by him
BARROWS, R. M. [J.D. Salinger; Richard Armour; Hurd Barrett; Pat Frank; O. Henry; Rudyard Kipling; Jack Leonard; Damon Runyan; et al].
The Kit Book For Soldiers, Sailors and Marines: Favorite Stories, Verse, and Cartoons for the Entertainment of Servicemen Everywhere. [The Hang of It].
Chicago: Consolidated Book Publishers, Inc., 1943.
First edition, second issue of this classic World War II-era short story collection, containing J.D. Salinger’s third published short story and first appearance in book form. 12mo, original illustrated boards, illustrated. Complied by R.M. Barrows, edited by E. X. Pastor and with contributions from J.D. Salinger, Richard Armour, Hurd Barrett, Pat Frank, O. Henry, Rudyard Kipling, Jack Leonard, and Damon Runyan among others. Signed by J.D. Salinger on the first page of his contribution, The Hang of It, on page 332. A commercial tale of a soldier who just can’t seem to get “the hang of it”, the story was first published in the July 12, 1941 issue of Collier’s magazine and subsequently in the 1942 and 1943 editions of The Kit Book For Soldiers, marking Salinger’s first appearance in book form. Salinger was drafted into the army in the spring of 1942, several months after the United States entered World War II, where he saw combat with the 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division. He was present at Utah Beach on D-Day, in the Battle of the Bulge, and the Battle of Hürtgen Forest. During the campaign from Normandy into Germany, Salinger arranged to meet with Ernest Hemingway, who was then working as a war correspondent in Paris. The meeting had a profound effect on Salinger and the development of his writing style; Hemingway was impressed by what Salinger shared with him of his early writing and the two corresponded frequently throughout the war. Salinger was later assigned to the 4th Counter Intelligence Corps in which he used his proficiency in French and German to interrogate prisoners of war and later witnessed the liberation of one of the Dachau Concentration Camps. In very good condition. Housed in the original box which is in near fine condition. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. From the collection of a WWII soldier who had this signed by Salinger while the two were stationed overseas at the time of publication. An exceptional example, signed by Salinger at a pivotal time in his life and before his almost complete withdrawal from society.
Price: $40,000.00 Item Number: 123104
“The music is not in the notes, but in the silence between”: Rare First Editions of the Full Orchestral Scores of the Symphonies of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven; Including the first appearance of of the full scores of Mozart's Overture to the Marriage of Figaro and Symphony no. 40
A Compleat Collection of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven’s Symphonies, in Score, Most Respectfully Dedicated, by Permission, to H.R.H The Prince of Wales.
London: Lavenu, Cianchettini & Sperati, 1808-1810.
First editions of the first printings of the full orchestral scores of the complete symphonies of Beethoven, Mozart, and Hadyn. Quarto, two volumes bound in three quarters morocco over marbled boards wit gilt titles and tooling to the spine, including A Complete Collection of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven’s Symphonies (Cianchettini and Sperati) and A Complete Collection of Mozart and Beethoven’s Symphonies. A Compleat Collection of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven’s Symphonies contains the first appearance of the full scores of Mozart‘s Overture to the Marriage of Figaro, Mozart‘s Symphony no. 40, and no. 41. (Fuld, The Book of World-Famous Music, 564-567). A Complete Collection of Mozart and Beethoven’s Symphonies (Lavenu) contains the first appearance of the full scores of Mozart‘s Symphony no. 39, no, 13, and no. 38. In very good condition with light toning to the text. An exceptional collection of the utmost rarity.
Price: $40,000.00 Item Number: 95829
“And I like large parties. They’re so intimate. At small parties there isn’t any privacy": First Modern Library of The Great Gatsby; Inscribed by F. Scott Fitzgerald
New York: The Modern Library, 1934.
First Modern Library edition of the author’s masterpiece, with the first appearance of Fitzgerald’s new introduction. Octavo, original green cloth. Inscribed by the author on the half title page, “For Lillian Abercrombie at the beginning of a tour of work F. Scott Fitzgerald.” Near fine in a very good dust jacket with some rubbing to the extremities and some small chips. Housed in a full custom morocco box. The first Modern Library edition of The Great Gatsby was a resounding commercial failure, and many copies were remaindered with the caption “discontinued title” printed on the jacket’s front panel. The present copy represents one of the earlier, non-remaindered copies, and like all of the first Modern Library editions of The Great Gatsby, features Fitzgerald’s new introduction, with his own, now-famous take on his masterwork: “I think it is an honest book, that is to say, that one used none of one’s virtuosity to get an effect, and, to boast again, one soft-pedalled the emotional side to avoid the tears leaking from the socket of the left eye, or the large false face peering around the corner of a character’s head. If there is a clear conscience, a book can survive — at least in one’s feelings about it. On the contrary, if one has a guilty conscience, one reads what one wants to hear out of reviews. In addition, if one is young and willing to learn, almost all reviews have a value, even the ones that seem unfair.”
Price: $40,000.00 Item Number: 37020
“Because races condemned to one hundred years of solitude did not have a second opportunity on earth”: Rare First Edition in Spanish of the Authors Masterpiece Cien Anos de Soledad; Inscribed by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Buenos Aires: Editorial Sudamericana, 1967.
First edition of the author’s masterpiece which is recognized as one of the most significant works in the Spanish literary canon. Octavo, original illustrated wrappers. Presentation copy, inscribed and dated by the author on the dedication page, “Para Pablo, conversando en el parque Gabriel Garcia Marquez ’95.” In near fine condition with a touch of rubbing small name on the front free endpaper. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box mimicking the front panel of the book. An exceptional example.
Price: $40,000.00 Item Number: 115638
“The object of the artist is the creation of the beautiful. What the beautiful is is another question": First English Edition of James Joyces Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man; Inscribed by Him
London: The Egoist Ltd, 1916.
First English edition, one of approximately 750 copies of Joyce’s classic stream-of-consciousness work, his first novel. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Beatrice Randegger. James Joyce. 25 Novembre 1919. Trieste.” The recipient was a private student’s of Joyce in Italy. In excellent condition with light rubbing and wear. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.
Price: $40,000.00 Item Number: 109550
“If I am the phantom, it is because man's hatred has made me so. If I am to be saved it is because your love redeems me": First Edition in English of Gaston Leroux's The Phantom of the Opera; in the rare original dust jacket
New York, Indianapolis: The Bobbs-Merrill Company , 1911.
First edition with the printer’s imprint “Press of Braunworth & Co. Bookbinders and Printers Brooklyn, N. Y.” at bottom of copyright page. Octavo, original cloth, publishers tissue guard. Illustrated by Andre Castaigne with one single-page and four double-page inserted plates with color illustrations. Near fine in the rare original dust jacket. The dust jacket design with the Phantom on the stairwell and not the bell tower on the front panel; one of only three total examples of the book known to have retained its dust jacket. An exceptional rarity of this cornerstone work.
Price: $40,000.00 Item Number: 99560
First Edition of Pynchon's First Book V.; Inscribed by Him to his Close Friend in the Month of Publication
Philadelphia and New York: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1963.
First edition of Pynchon’s first book. Octavo, original cloth. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the verso of the front free endpaper in the month of publication, “Aug. 1963. To Bob & Ginny, with affection, Tom.” The recipient was his Boeing colleague and close friend Bob Hillock and his wife Ginny. Fine in a near fine dust jacket. Jacket design by Ismar David. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Rare and desirable signed.
Price: $38,000.00 Item Number: 80035
First Edition, first issue of The Great Gatsby; with a signed presentation inscription signed by him in 1929 in Paris bound in
New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1925.
First edition, first issue of the author’s masterpiece with “chatter” p.60, “northern” p.119, “sick in tired” p.205, and “Union Street station” p.211. Octavo, original green cloth, gilt titles to the spine. With a presentation note inscribed by the author bound in before the half-title page, “For J.E. Cribb from yours sincerely F Scott Fitzgerald Paris, 1929.” Paris in the 1920s proved the most influential decade of Fitzgerald’s development. Fitzgerald made several excursions to Europe, mostly Paris and the French Riviera, and became friends with many members of the American expatriate community in Paris, notably Ernest Hemingway. Fitzgerald’s friendship with Hemingway was quite effusive, as many of Fitzgerald’s relationships would prove to be. Hemingway did not get on well with Zelda, however, and in addition to describing her as “insane” in his memoir A Moveable Feast, Hemingway claimed that Zelda “encouraged her husband to drink so as to distract Fitzgerald from his work on his novel”, so he could work on the short stories he sold to magazines to help support their lifestyle. In near fine condition with a touch of wear. Housed in a custom full morocco clamshell box.
Price: $38,000.00 Item Number: 104061
New York: Charles Scribners Sons, 1935.
First edition, first state, with pages 349-52 uncancelled and with “catch it” reading on page 351. Octavo, original cloth. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “For Isabel Owens Hoping we’ll both be able to look back to this winter as a bleak exception, in a business way from F. Scott (“Old Scrooge”) Fitzgerald.” The recipient, Isabel Owens worked full-time as Fitzgerald’s Baltimore secretary from 1932-36. She continued part-time in this role until his death in 1940. In addition to her secretarial duties, Owens acted as a foster mother to the Fitzgeralds’ daughter Scottie and companion to Zelda. In near fine condition with the spine gilt bright in a very good dust jacket with some inner strengthening to the folds. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A wonderful association copy.
Price: $38,000.00 Item Number: 3024
“They were so close to each other that they preferred death to separation”: Rare First Edition in Spanish of the Authors Masterpiece Cien Anos de Soledad; Inscribed by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Buenos Aires: Editorial Sudamericana, 1967.
First edition of the author’s masterpiece which is recognized as one of the most significant works in the Spanish literary canon. Octavo, original illustrated wrappers. Presentation copy, inscribed and dated by the author on the dedication page, “Para Leonard, con todo el afecto, Gabo.” In near fine condition with light rubbing. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional example, rare and desirable signed.
Price: $38,000.00 Item Number: 114832
"High School introduced at young age (15 & 16) to Emily Dickinson, who is probably greatest American poet I realize now": Rare Graduate Student Questionnaire Completed and Signed by Jack Kerouac with a lengthy inscription
Rare mimeographed questionnaire sent by a graduate student of City College of New York to Jack Kerouac; completed and signed twice by him with a lengthy inscription in conclusion. Two pages, partially printed the questionnaire begins with a typed letter signed by James A. Sherlock politely requesting Kerouac’s response which reads in part: “Dear Mr. Kerouac, I am a graduate student of City College of New York, working upon an original research project aimed at uncovering certain educational factors in the lives of successful writers. As you undoubtedly know, there always has been considerable interest in analyzing the psychological make-up of the writer, but seldom has the more prosaic factor of the writer’s education been taken into consideration. Through this questionnaire, I would like to find out if the average successful writer considers his high school education in English a help or a hindrance in preparing him for his profession. Did frequent composition assignments aid the writer in improving his skill? Did reading – either outside reading or reading assigned in the classroom – play a small or large part in preparing the writer for his work?” Completed by Kerouac, in his hand, the questionnaire reads: Reading During High School: 1. In your high school days, did you prefer to read fiction or non-fiction? “Both” 2. If you preferred fiction, what type did you prefer? (Novels, short stories, plays, poetry, etc.) “Novels (from Bronte to ‘pulp’ novels)” 3. If you preferred non-fiction, what subjects did you prefer to read about? “Encyclopaedias [sic], Atlases, Harvard Classics (of Elliot)” 4. Was most of your reading matter of your own choosing or reading material assigned in the classroom? “My Own Choosing mostly (cut classes to spend schooldays in Library)” 5. Did you favor one or two authors at this time in particular in your high school reading? If so, whom? “Just general” 6. As nearly as you can remember, approximately how many books did you read each month during your high school days? “Depended on activities (of course)” High School Instruction: 7. As nearly as you can remember, how often were written compositions assigned in your high school English classes? “Can’t remember” 8. In your opinion, what facet of English instruction did most to develop your skill as a writer? (Literature, composition, spelling, grammar, vocabulary study, others) “Literature” The least? “Composition” 9. As you recall, were your grades in English composition on the whole very good, good, average, fair, or poor? (Kerouac has checked good) 10. Do you recall ever having received special encouragement in your writing from a high school English teacher? “Yes, Joseph Pyne of Lowell High School (Mass.)” Early Writing: 11. At approximately what age did you first seriously consider becoming a writer? “17 (That is, a ‘serious’ writer) (wrote since 11)” 12. Did you engage in outside writing – above the usual writing required in every day life – to any degree at this time? “Yes – from 11 yrs. old on.” 13. Did you at this time consciously imitate the style of any particular author or authors in your writing? “Yes” If so, who? “Saroyan & Hemingway (at 17)” 14. In your opinion, how much did your high school English courses contribute to your success as a writer? (Kerouac has checked all four options: Very much, Some, Little, and Very Little) 15. What factor or factors, if any, would you say contributed more that your schooling to your success as a writer? “SELF IMPOSED READING SCHEDULES OUTSIDE CLASSROOM” Note: If you have additional ideas on the value or inadequacies of your high school English instruction, please feel free to state them on the back of this questionnaire. Name: “Jack Kerouac”. In response to the final question, Kerouac has added a full page signed inscription to the verso of the third page of the questionnaire, “English & American Lit course in High School introduced at young age (15 & 16) to Emily Dickinson, who is probably greatest American poet I realize now (at least equal to Melville & Whitman for sheer mental beauty & brilliance of emotion – description) – High School crucial time to teach Jack K. But writers are born, not made (ask Balzac).” In near fine condition. An exceptional example offering a rare and intimate glimpse into the education and influences of one of the formative writers of the 20th century.
Price: $38,000.00 Item Number: 117950
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1946.
First American edition of Camus’ first novel and masterpiece. Octavo, original beige cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the half-title page, “A Muriel Sutman nous ne sommes pas des étrangers, Albert Camus.” Near fine in a near fine dust jacket. Jacket design by Warren Chappell. Translated by Stuart Gilbert. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Presentation copies of The Stranger are rare, with only one appearing at auction in the past 70 years.
Price: $37,500.00 Item Number: 116373
"It Is Very Queer That The Unhappiness Of The World Is So Often Brought On By Small Men": First Edition of All Quiet On The Western Front; Inscribed by Erich Maria Remarque
London: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1929.
First edition in English of this landmark novel of the 20th century. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “With the compliments and thanks to Geor Henry Gribb! Erich Maria Remarque.” With a type letter from the author dated in 28th February, 1929 from Remarque attached to the front pastedown. Near fine in a near fine dust jacket with light rubbing. With the original publisher’s list and catalogues card laid in. Translated by A.W. Wheen. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Exceptionally rare and desirable signed and inscribed, with only one example appearing at auction in the last 90 years.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 119450
“Life's single lesson: that there is more accident to it than a man can ever admit to in a lifetime and stay sane": First Edition of Thomas Pynchon's First Book V.; Inscribed by Him
Philadelphia and New York: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1963.
First edition of Pynchon’s first book. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Herb Yellin- I’ve been reading this over. It’s not such a terrific book, is it? Thomas Pynchon.” Fine in a near fine dust jacket with some of the usual rubbing to the extremities. Jacket design by Ismar David. Books signed and inscribed by Pynchon are notoriously rare. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 7203
Rare large format photograph of American cultural icon James Dean; inscribed by him to his photographer Sanford H. Roth
Rare large format Sanford H. Roth photograph of cultural icon James dean playing table tennis. Inscribed beneath his image, “To Mr. Roth best wishes James Dean.” The recipient, renowned American photographer Sanford H. Roth, was a close friend of Dean’s and photographed him frequently. Dean visited Roth’s home in California frequently and treated him and his wife Beulah almost as adoptive parents. Poignantly, Roth was in Dean’s Ford station wagon driving behind Dean’s new Porsche Spyder on the way to the Salinas Road Races on September 30, 1955, when Dean was killed in a late afternoon traffic accident. Roth took the now famous post-accident photographs. Beulah later denied that Sandy ever took any photos of Dean trapped in the wrecked Spyder. In near fine condition. The photograph measures 14 inches by 11 inches. The entire piece measures 19.5 inches by 16.5 inches. An exceptional association.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 124398
London: By William Stansby For Ed: Blounte, 1620.
Rare second edition of the first part of Don Quixote in English. Octavo, bound in contemporary calf, engraved title page, woodcut headpieces and decorative initials. In very good condition with some wear to the binding, portion of upper spine. Translated by Thomas Shelton. Exceptionally rare and desirable.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 74055
The Constable Edition of The Works of Shakespeare; one of only 1,000 copies bound by BaynTun in cosway-style binding and elaborately illustrated with original watercolors
Edinburgh: T. and A. Constable; Grant Richards, 1903-1904.
The Constable edition of the works of Shakespeare. Folio, ten volumes. Elaborately bound in full blue morocco by Bayntun Riviere in Cosway-style binding with hand painted portrait medallions under glass to the front panel of each volume, gilt titles to the spine, gilt tooling to the spine and front panel, fleuron cornerpiece designs within gilt frames, raised gilt bands, inner dentelles, top edge gilt, silk endleaves, ribbon bound in. Illustrated with 479 tissue-guarded plates and 531 original illustrations, 525 of which are original watercolors. One of only 1,000 copies, this is number 149. Volume X is signed by Grant Richards, who produced that volume only, on the limitation page. Each volume contains four plays, with the exception of volume ten which contains two plays followed by Shakespeare’s narrative poems and sonnets. In near fine condition. Exceptionally rare and desirable. A stunning set.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 95176
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1929.
First edition of the author’s first book and “acknowledged literary landmark” (New York Times Book Review). Octavo, original cloth. Near fine in a very good dust jacket with a few small chips. An exceptional example in a completely unrestored early issue dust jacket, which is usually encountered with restoration. Rare and desirable.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 122905
"unscrew the locks from the doors! Unscrew the doors themselves from their jambs!": Rare Mimeographed Sheets of The Howl Produced for its First Reading. Preceding the First Edition and signed by Ginsberg and five others present at the Six Gallery in October of 1955
Two sheets from an exceptionally rare privately produced mimeographed printing of Howl, preceding the first edition. One of 25 copies printed on rectos only in purple ink typed by the poet Robert Creeley and printed by Marthe Rexroth at S.F State, where she was a secretary, for the famous Six Gallery reading (also known as Six Angels in the Same Performance). This event, which took place at 3110 Fillmore Street in San Francisco on October 7, 1955 was the first important public poetry exhibition heralding the West Coast literary revolution of the Beat Generation. At the reading, five talented young poets—Allen Ginsberg, Philip Lamantia, Michael McClure, Gary Snyder, and Philip Whalen presented some of their latest works. They were introduced by Kenneth Rexroth, who was a kind of literary father-figure for the younger poets. It was at this reading that Allen Ginsberg performed the piece in public, which had been advertised by a postcard proclaiming: “Remarkable collection of angels all gathered at once in the same spot. Wine, music, dancing girls, serious poetry, free satori.” The exuberant audience included Neal Cassady, who passed around the wine jug and a collection plate and a drunken Jack Kerouac, who refused to read his own work but cheered the other poets on, and later wrote an account in his novel The Dharma Bums. He fictionalized the event with a description of circulating gallon jugs of California burgundy among the increasingly raucous crowd, “getting them all piffed so that by eleven o’clock when Alvah Goldbrook (Ginsberg’s stand-in in the novel) was reading his wailing poem ‘Wail’ (‘Howl’) drunk with arms outspread everybody was yelling ‘Go! Go! Go!’” Also in attendance was Lawrence Ferlinghetti, who telegrammed Ginsberg the following day offering to publish his work, saying ” I greet you at the beginning of a great career. When do I get the manuscript?” He published in 1956 through his City Lights Press, but customs agents seized Howl and Other Poems when it arrived from its London-based printer on grounds that it was indecent and obscene. Ferlinghetti and his store manager Shigeyoshi Murao were acquitted of the obscenity charges in October 1957. The title page is signed by Allen Ginsberg, with the signature and a note by Marthe Rexroth, which reads, “I cranked the ditto master at S F State the first time around -and! was at the reading.” On the verso of the title, McClure has written the lengthy note, “This first long poem of Allen’s was read at the Six Gallery in San Francisco in October 1955. I was 22 years old and gave my first reading also that night. I read a poem titled FOR THE DEATHS OF 100 WHALES and other poems of nature and new consciousness. Our co-readers that night were Whalen, Snyder, & Lamantia. Kenneth Rexroth was M.C. I met Jack Kerouac that night. The group of us – minus Lamantia – read again in Berkeley, March 1956, on a rainy evening. It was a fine evening for poetry and I remember my pleasure in Allen’s comic ‘America’. I read mostly from a huge notebook of experimental poems of consciousness. Michael McClure.” On the dedication page are the signatures of Philip Lamantia, Gary Snyder, Philip Whalen, Lawrence Ferlinghetti and an inscription by David Meltzer: ” When Allen first read Kaddish in SF, I read too. I was 22.” Double matted and framed, the entire piece measures 20 inches by 26 inches, with an opening in the back of the frame to view McClure’s statement. Only one other similar printing of this edition has surfaced, which fetched $118,750 at auction in 2013, although this copy did include all of the pages. An exceptionally rare item of this important work and cornerstone to American thought and culture.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 40140
Harry Potter Series Complete Deluxe Set. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Chamber of Secrets, Prisoner of Azkaban, Goblet of Fire, Order of the Phoenix, The Half-Blood Prince, and The Deathly Hallows.
London: Bloomsbury, 1997-2007.
First editions of the deluxe edition of each book in Rowling’s Harry Potter series. Octavo, 7 volumes, original decorative cloth as issued. Each volume is signed by J.K. Rowling and were collected in person by the previous owner. The Prisoner of Azkaban is inscribed. In fine condition. No dust jackets were issued for these volumes. Scarce and desirable.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 81035
"My original soul seemed, at once, to take its flight from my body": Scarce first edition of Edgar Allan Poe's Tales; including the first appearance of The Gold-Bug, The Black Cat, The Fall of The House of Usher, and The Purloined Letter
New York: Wiley and Putnam, 1845.
First edition, first printing with the imprints of T. B. Smith and H. Ludwig on the copyright page of one of the most important works in the history of American literature. Several of the dozen stories in this remarkable collection are among the best known in fiction including The Gold-Bug, The Black Cat, The Fall of The House of Usher, and The Purloined Letter. Octavo, bound in three quarters contemporary calf over marbled boards. Housed in a custom clamshell and chemise box. In excellent condition with light browning to the text. BAL 16146; Grolier, 100 American, 55; Heartman and Canny, pp. 90-97; Yale/Gimbel 61. One of the nicest examples we have seen of this scarce highspot of American literature.
Price: $35,000.00 Item Number: 95139
"However closely we live together, at whatever time of day or night we sound the deepest thoughts in one another, we know nothing": Rare First Edition of the John Le Carres First Book; Signed by Him
London: Victor Gollancz, 1961.
First edition of the author’s first book, which introduced the world to the recurring protagonist, George Smiley. Octavo, original red cloth. Signed by the author on the title page in a contemporary hand, “John le Carre David Cornwell.” Fine in a near fine price-clipped dust jacket. Housed in a custom clamshell box. An exceptional example, most rare and desirable using his real name and his pen name.
Price: $32,500.00 Item Number: 94755
"With best wishes of a fellow Celt": First Edition of Tender Is the Night; Inscribed by F. Scott Fitzgerald
New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1934.
First edition of the work which Fitzgerald considered to be his finest. Octavo, original green cloth. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper “For Lillian Abercrombie with best wishes of a fellow Celt F. Scott Fitzgerald.” In near fine condition. Housed in a custom full morocco clamshell and chemise box.
Price: $30,000.00 Item Number: 87567
“Of all creatures that breathe and move upon the earth, nothing is bred that is weaker than man”: exceptionally rare sixteenth century printing of Homer's Odyssey in Latin
Odissea Per Raphaelem Volaterranum in Latinum Conversa (The Odyssey of Homer translated by Raphael of Volterra in Latin).
Rome: Per Lacoubum Mazochium, 1510.
One of the earliest Latin translations of Homer’s epic poem, translated from the Greek by Roman Hellenic scholar Raphaello Maffei (Raphael of Volterra). Quarto, bound in contemporary vellum, rebacked, woodcut titles and printer’s device to the title page and at end of text. From the library of Robert R. Dearden, Jr. of Philadelphia with his bookplate to the front panel. American bibliophile and author Robert R. Dearden was known for his extensive rare bible collection with a focus on early editions of American Bibles. He authored the book The Guiding Light on the Great Highway (1929), elaborately illustrated with photographs of his collection. Minor wear and a few small repairs to the title page. A very good example of this important work which has survived over five centuries.
Price: $30,000.00 Item Number: 88060
London: John Lane, The Bodley Head, 1943.
First edition of the final novel in Lewis’ acclaimed Space Trilogy. Octavo, original cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by C.S. Lewis to fellow writer and journalist George Orwell and his wife (Eric and Eileen Blair) on the front free endpaper, “To the Blairs, with kind regards, C.S. Lewis Aug. 1945.” This is the review copy used in George Orwell’s literary review of the book which was published in the Manchester Evening News on August 16th 1945. Also with three hand-corrections to the text in Lewis’ hand which he made in all review copies before personally sending to critics. Although Lewis and Orwell were not close friends, both were employed as radio journalists by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) during WWII, an era that transformed both religious broadcasting (in which Lewis became a primary figure) and war correspondence (Orwell’s experience as a correspondent working out of the basement of the BBC during wartime was a major inspiration for his masterpiece Nineteen Eighty-Four). Very good in a very good dust jacket. Housed in a custom half morrocco clamshell box. A remarkable association.
Price: $30,000.00 Item Number: 81218
"to George You're Great And Always will be!": Bob Dylan's Lyrics; Inscribed by Him to George Harrison
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1985.
First printing of the second edition of this compilation of Dylan’s lyrics. Quarto, original glossy illustrated boards. Association copy, inscribed by Dylan to close friend and fellow legendary musician, George Harrison on the front free endpaper: “To George [surrounded by a sun] You’re Great And Always will be! Best wishes Bob Dylan/3/’86.” George Harrison wrote the lyrics to the Beatles hit, “Here Comes the Sun” and Dylan was a major catalyst for Harrison as a musician. They met in person for the first time in August of 1964 at the Delmonico Hotel in New York City, where Dylan, after misinterpreting ‘It’s A Hard Day’s Night’ lyric “I get high”, offered Harrison and his fellow Beatles their first marijuana joint. After this meeting, the friendship between the Beatles and Dylan grew and his influence allowed them to expand past the conventions of pop music, with an increased use of acoustic rather than electric instruments in their recordings and more of a focus on craftsmanship vs. music for the mass market. In the fall of 1968, Harrison came to Dylan’s home in upstate New York, where they co-wrote the song, “I’d Have you Anytime”, which is recognized as a statement of friendship between the two musicians. The song was released on Harrison’s first solo album, “All Things Must Pass”, which also included a song about Dylan called, “Behind That Locked Door” and a cover of Dylan’s song, “If Not For You”. The two musicians continued occasional jam sessions in private and onstage, but the closeness of their connection was not as apparent to the public until the formation of the Travelling Wilburys in 1988, which consisted of Dylan, Harrison, Jeff Lynne, Roy Orbison and Tom Petty. In near fine condition. A wonderful association copy linking these two music geniuses.
Price: $30,000.00 Item Number: 80146