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  • The Bishop-Stockhausen copy of the extraordinarily rare first issue of Shakespeare's Second Folio

    SHAKESPEARE, William.

    Mr. William Shakespeare’s Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies. Published according to the true Originall Copies. The Second Impression.

    London: Printed by Tho. Cotes, for Robert Allot 1632.

    The Bishop-Stockhausen copy of the extraordinarily rare first issue of Shakespeare’s Second Folio. Of the nine imprint variants of this edition noted by ESTC, this is the first (Todd 1a). Among the other variants are title-page imprints for the four other publishers (Smethwick, Aspley, Hawkins and Meighen) and two reissues of the edition ca. 1641 or later. Folio, bound in full eighteenth century blue morocco with gilt titles and elaborate gilt tooling to the spine in seven compartments with raised gilt bands, gilt cornerpieces within gilt frames with central bevels and gilt fleuroned inner frames to the front and rear panels, all edges gilt, slate gray endpapers. Binding attributed by Bishop and Stockhausen to Christian Samuel Kalthoeber, the leading and most highly-sought after artist-bookbinder in in late eighteenth century London. A German émigré, Kalthoeber create his own ornamental designed which were quickly copied and was patronized by King George III, novelist William Beckford and Catherine the Great. Engraved portrait or Shakespeare by Droeshout to the title page printed from the same plate as the First Folio opposite the initial leaf of Jonson’s verses, woodcut head and tail pieces. Todd’s imprint setting “A,” State 1b. It is believed there are fewer than 200 extant copies of the second folio which notably contains John Milton’s first appearance in print with “An Epitaph on the admirable Dramaticke Poet, W. Shakespeare” (A5r). In near fine condition. Provenance: Cortland Field Bishop (morocco label; AAA/Anderson, 14 November 1938, lot 2077) — Henry Walker & Nancy Reynolds Bagley (bookplate featuring their Greenwich residence) — William E. Stockhausen (Sotheby Parke Bernet, 19 November 1974, lot 399). Housed in a full custom morocco clamshell box. An extraordinary example, in terms of both condition and scarcity, easily the nicest example obtainable.

    Price: $500,000.00

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    VESALIUS, Andreas.

    De Humani Corporis Fabrica Libri Septem [On the Fabric of the Human Body in Seven Books].

    Basel: Ex Officina Joannis Oporini 1543.

    First edition of the most important and influential book in the study of human anatomy and “one of the most beautiful scientific books ever printed”(Grolier). Folio, bound in full 18th century calf, woodcut title page with Vesalius performing a dissection, woodcut portrait of the author, over 200 woodcut anatomical illustrations, including 21 full page and 2 folding-sheet figural woodcuts of the skeletal, muscular, vascular and nervous systems. In very good condition with some light dampstaining to some page edges. Rare and desirable, especially in contemporary calf. A splendid example of Vesalius’ masterpiece, one of the most monumental achievements in the history of  both medical education and printing.

    Price: $300,000.00

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  • "The Road goes ever on and on down from the door where it began. Now far away the Road was gone and I must follow if I can": J.R.R. Tolkien Signed Calligraphic Quote and Autograph Letter


    J.R.R. Tolkien Signed Calligraphic “The Road Goes Ever On and On” Quote and Autograph Letter.

    Exceptionally rare calligraphic quotation signed and entirely in the hand of J.R.R. Tolkien of The Road Goes Ever On, also known as A Walking Song, fictionally composed by Bilbo Baggins and first appearing in The Hobbit and later thrice in slightly differing versions throughout The Lord of the Rings. With the original autograph transmittal letter signed by Tolkien at the conclusion of which he has practiced his calligraphy for the final draft of the calligraphic quote. On Tolkien’s Merton College letterhead the letter reads, ‘Dear Mr. Hodgson, I am sorry that this letter dictated to my London secretary was not forwarded to you at once. It was sent to me for signature while I was away on a brief convalescence after being ill during January and February and the beginnings of March, and I regret that it came back with me, to become included in a heavy correspondence awaiting my return. With regard to the copy of the verses: I expect that it is only the first version L.R. I 44,82 and that also from version III 226 that you wish for. Do you wish for a copy in my normal hand in a more careful form (as here); or something more “calligraphic” in intention? But I warn you that neither will be very beautiful. My ageing hands are now losing their steadiness and such moderate skill as they ever had. “Yours sincerely J.R.R. Tolkien. The Road does ever on and on…The Road goes ever on and on down from the door where is began.” The letter is in fine condition and measures 7 inches by 5.25 inches. Double matted and framed, the final quotation, entirely in Tolkien’s hand reads, “The Road goes ever on and on down from the door where it began. Now far away the Road was gone and I must follow if I can. Pursuing it with eager feet, until it finds some larger way Where many paths and errands meet. And whither then? I cannot say. J.R.R. Tolkien.” Matted with a notation which reads, ‘From the Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien Written Out by the Author 1973.’ In fine condition. Double matted and elaborately framed, the entire piece measures 21 inches by 18.5 inches. Exceptionally rare and desirable.

    Price: $150,000.00

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  • First edition of the Ian Fleming’s first book Casino Royale which introduced the world to 007: Inscribed by Ian Fleming to Classmate and Novelist Ralph Arnold

    FLEMING, Ian.

    Casino Royale.

    London: Jonathan Cape 1953.

    First edition of the first novel in Ian Fleming’s James Bond series. Octavo, original black cloth. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Ralph, We have now both reduced our remainders by one copy! Ian.” With a note of explanation by the recipient underneath, “I having told Ian, from the depths of my publishing experience, that he would be lucky if he made £200 out of this, his first thriller!! R.A.” The recipient Ralph Arnold was a novelist, historical writer and publisher who joined Constable in 1936 and was chairman from 1958 to 1962. Arnold and Fleming studied together at the Tennerhof School in Kitzbühel, Austria, and it was there that both made their first forays into story-writing. Having left Sandhurst without obtaining a commission, Fleming “was sent to ‘sort himself out’ at a quasi-finishing school for men in Kitzbühel … There, while skiing and climbing mountains, he came under the benevolent tutelage of Ernan Forbes Dennis, a former British spy turned educationalist, and his wife, Phyllis Bottome, an established novelist. Forbes Dennis brought out Fleming’s aptitude for languages and introduced him to literature, while his wife encouraged him to write his first stories.” (Oxford DNB). Near fine in a near fine first state dust jacket (without the Sunday Times review on the inner front flap) with the lightest of rubbing to the extremities. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.

    Price: $150,000.00

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  • "The Most Important Work of Modern Times": One of the Earliest Presentation Copies of James Joyce's Ulysses; Inscribed by Joyce to Lewis Galantiere

    JOYCE, James.


    Paris: Shakespeare and Company 1922.

    First edition, one of 750 numbered copies, this example is number 282. Quarto, original blue wrappers as issued. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the half-title page, “To Lewis Galantiere James Joyce Paris 11 February 1922.” Ulysses was scheduled for publication on Joyce‘s fortieth birthday (February 2, 1922), but only two copies were ready on that date due to technical difficulties in printing the cover, the color of which Joyce wanted to match with the blue of the Greek flag. One of these was the copy delivered by Sylvia Beach to Joyce on February 2, which he then inscribed to his wife Nora, being the only known presentation copy to predate Galantiere’s. The present copy in turn predates by two days the three copies presented to Sylvia Beach, Harriet Shaw Weaver and Margaret Anderson, and by three days the copy inscribed to Robert McAlmon, who helped Joyce prepare the final typescript. Galantiere was an American translator of French literature, writer, playwright and journalist. From 1920 to 1927 he was secretary of the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris, and came to know most of the literary figures of the day, including Hemingway. In a letter to Harriet Weaver of 17 April 1926, Joyce writes: “I am to read [from Finnegans Wake] … to a small group, this time including … a young American Galantiere who is preparing a course of lectures of Ulysses” (Joyce Letters vol 3, p 140). Slocum & Cahoon A17; Connolly The Modern Movement 42. In excellent condition with light rubbing, rebacked without the folding flaps. With Galantiere’s marginal markings in pencil and in ink. Housed in a custom full morocco clamshell box. An exceptional rarity of this twentieth century milestone.

    Price: $150,000.00

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  • First edition of Alhazen's fundamental Book of Optics


    Opticae Thesaurus Alhazeni Arabis. [Alhazen’s Book of Optics].

    Basel: Eusebius Episcopius 1572.

    First edition of Alhazen’s fundamental work on optics and vision, which influenced Galileo and Kepler and paved the way for the modern science of physical optics. Folio, bound in full contemporary Basel vellum with central arabesques blind-stamped to the front and rear panels, titles stamped in black and five raised bands to the spine, woodcut printer’s device to the title page, woodcut initials, diagrams and full page illustration to the verso of the title page. Translated from Arabic into Latin by Gerard of Cremona. In very good condition. From the library of American physician Chester Tilton Stone with his bookplate to the pastedown. A superior example of this significant work, rare and desirable in contemporary vellum.

    Price: $142,000.00

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    FLEMING, Ian.

    Complete Set of 14 First Edition James Bond Novels: Casino Royale, Live and Let Die, Moonraker, Diamonds are Forever, From Russia with Love, Dr. No, Goldfinger, For Your Eyes Only (short stories including A View to a Kill and Quantum of Solace), Thunderball, The Spy Who loved Me, On Her Majesties Secret Service, You Only Live Twice, The Man with the Golden Gun, Octopussy and The Living Daylights.

    London: Jonathan Cape 1953-66.

    First editions of each volume in Ian Fleming’s James Bond series. Octavo, 14 volumes, original cloth. Each volume is fine in near fine to fine first-issue dust jackets, with with five signed by Sean Connery, which include: From Russia With Love, Dr. No, Diamonds Are Forever, Goldfinger and Thunderball each signed by Sean Connery. Each volume is housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional collection of first editions, most rare in this condition and signed.

    Price: $140,000.00

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    SMITH, Adam.

    The Theory of Moral Sentiments.

    London: For A. Milar, and A. Kincaid and J. Bell 1759.

    Rare first edition of Adam Smith’s first book, with a recorded “print run of 1,000 copies” (Sher, “Editions of Adam’s Smith’s Books,” 13). Octavo, bound in full contemporary leather. In near fine condition. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Easily one of the nicest examples extant of this landmark work.

    Price: $130,000.00

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    SHAKESPEARE, William.

    Mr. William Shakespeare’s Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies. Fourth Folio.

    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. 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

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  • "on her 21st birthday from her admirer": The Great Gatsby; Inscribed by F. Scott Fitzgerald

    FITZGERALD, F. Scott.

    The Great Gatsby.

    New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons 1925.

    First edition, second printing of the author’s masterpiece. Octavo, original green cloth, gilt titles to the spine. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper,“For Esther Sidman on her 21st birthday from her admirer. F Scott Fitzgerald, Hollywood, 1938.” In near fine condition with a touch of wear. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Great Gatsby’s signed and inscribed by Fitzgerald are rare.

    Price: $92,000.00

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    MACHIAVELLI, Niccolo.

    Nicholas Machiavel’s Prince. Also, The life of Castruccio Castracani of Lucca. And The meanes Duke Valentine us’d to put to death Vitellezzo Vitelli… Translated out of Italian into English by E.D.

    London: R. Bishop for Wil: Hils 1640.

    Rare first edition in English of Machiavelli’s Prince, a seminal work in the foundation of modern political theory, and the great classic of political science. 12 mo, bound in full contemporary calf. From the library of William Constable, Baronet with his bookplate, in near fine condition. Housed in a custom full morocco clamshell box. An exceptional example, most rare and desirable in this condition.

    Price: $78,000.00

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  • "Think you're escaping and run into yourself. Longest way round is the shortest way home": First Edition of Ulysses; One of 750 Numbered Copies

    JOYCE, James.


    Paris: Shakespeare & Company 1922.

    First edition, one of 750 numbered copies on handmade paper from a total edition of 1000 copies, this is number 992. Thick quarto, original blue and white wrappers. A near fine example, internally fresh and largely unopened, completely unrestored. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. This example contains the original prospectus with the tipped-on reproduction of the 1918 photo of Joyce by C. Ruf. The front panel of the prospectus has been amended, as often, to indicate the book “is now ready,” and the original buyer must have jumped at the opportunity, as the order panel of the prospectus has been neatly cut away. Sisley Huddleston’s 5 March 1922 review from The Observer is also laid in (though both items are in prophylactic sleeves that have prevented any offsetting). Also laid into the slipcase is some correspondence relating to the sale of this copy in 1972 by Duschnes in New York City. An exceptional example with noted provenance.

    Price: $75,000.00

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  • First Edition of Ernest Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises, In The Rare Original First-Issue Dust Jacket

    HEMINGWAY, Ernest.

    The Sun Also Rises.

    New York: Charles Scribner's Sons 1926.

    First edition, first issue of the first printing, with the misprint (“stoppped”) on page 181 line 26, in the first issue dust jacket with the misprint on the front panel (“In Our Times” vs. “In Our Time”). Octavo, original black cloth. Fine in a near fine first issue dust jacket without any restoration. The Annette Campbell-White copy brought $120,000 at Sotheby’s in 2007. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional example.

    Price: $75,000.00

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  • "The book that introduced France to Newtonian physics": First Edition of Voltaire's Elements of the Philosophy of Newton; Inscribed by him to the surgeon who attended Newton in his final illness

    VOLTAIRE, Arouet.

    Elemens de la Philosophie de Neuton [Elements of the Philosophy of Newton].

    Londres [Paris]: Prault 1738.

    First French edition of one of the most elegantly illustrated science books ever printed and the book that introduced France to Newtonian physics; a scarce presentation copy inscribed by Voltaire. Octavo, bound in full contemporary calf with gilt tooling to the spine in six compartments within raised gilt bands, red morocco spine label lettered in gilt, gilt ruling to the panels, inner dentelles, all edges gilt, marbled endpapers. Illustrated with two frontispiece portraits of both Newton and Voltaire, six full page plates, one folding plate, and illustrations throughout the text. Presentation copy, inscribed by Voltaire on the front free endpaper to William Cheselden, one of the most influential surgeons of 18th century England who attended Newton in his final illness. Although it is unknown if Voltaire and Newton met, Voltaire attended Newton’s funeral in 1727 while living in exile in England. During this exile he became an adherent of Newtonian physics and philosophy which he saw as the embodiment of the Enlightenment victory over Christian dogma and as the destroyer of the errors of Cartesianism. Voltaire dedicated the work to his mistress, La Madame la Marquise du Chastellet, who was a fellow scholar of Newton and completed the first French translation of the Principia in 1759. From the library of Dr. Adrian Pollock. A graduate of the University of Cambridge, Pollock was a leader in the field of non-destructive acoustic emission testing, an approach to emission testing which addresses dynamic processes in materials by listening to the energy released by objects. He amassed a large book collection covering the history of science which he acquired throughout his travels between the United States and United Kingdom and from international catalogs. Newton was a particular favorite of Pollock’s as the two scientists worked in the same field and shared an alma mater. In very good condition with light shelfwear. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Exceedingly rare, surely one of the most significant examples of this work.

    Price: $75,000.00

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  • Jack Kerouac Autographed Manuscript

    KEROUAC, Jack.

    Jack Kerouac Autographed Manuscript.

    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 told 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 I 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. In near fine condition.

    Price: $75,000.00

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