A milestone of science, from the library of the Nuremberg humanist Joachim Camerarius

Agricola, Georg. De re metallica. Basel, J. Froben and N. Episcopius, 1556. Basel, J. Froben and N. Episcopius, 1556. Folio. (10), 538 (but: 502), (74) pp. With 2 (1 folded) woodcut plates and about 280 woodcut illustrations and diagrams in text, partly full-page. Contemporary vellum with ms. title to spine. Edges in blue.

£ 40,000.-

First edition of "the first systematic treatise on mining and metallurgy, and one of the first technological works of modern times" (PMM), an immaculate copy with outstanding provenance. Dealing with "everything connected with the mining industry and metallurgical processes, including administration, prospecting, the duties of officials and companies, and the manufacture of glass, sulphur and alum" (PMM), Agricola's main work paved the way for further systematic study of the earth and of its rocks, minerals, fossils, refinery and oil. Illustrated with 2 plates (one folding) and more than 280 woodcuts in the text attributed to Hans Rudolf Manuel Deutsch (1525-72), some very large, showing the different stages of the extraction and transformation of metals. - From the library of the famous German physician and botanist Joachim Camerarius the Younger (1534-98) with his autograph ownership to the title page ("Joachimo Joach[imi] F[ilio] Camerario"; the Morgan Library holds another book from his library with an identical inscription, cf. Accession no. PML 129904) and a very few underlinings and marginalia most likely also in his hand. Unidentified 18th c. engraved bookplate with the motto "similare nescit" on verso of title. Acquired from the library of Werner Habel, with his stamp, signature and acquisition date (1977) to front pastedown. First and final pages very lightly brownstained in the edges, otherwise clean and crisp throughout. Complete with the two inserted plates following page 100. A very appealing, wide-margined copy in its first binding.
¶ PMM 79. Adams A 349. Sparrow (Milestones of Science), 4 and pl. 26.


Surgical instruments illustrated

Al-Razi, Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Zakariyya (Rhazes) / Arcolano, Giovanni (ed.). Omnes, qui proximis seculis scripserunt, medicos longe excellentis... opera [...]. In quibus sunt & commentarii in Razis Arabis nonum Lib. ad regem Almansorem [...]. Basel, Heinrich Petri, 1540. Basel, Heinrich Petri, 1540. Folio (225 x 331 mm). (12), 747, (1) pp. With 2 (repeated) woodcut printer's devices to title page and final page as well as a half-page woodcut of surgical instruments at the end of the preliminaries. Modern blindstamped brown calf on four raised double bands.

£ 8,500.-

Rare edition of this commentary on the ninth book of the treatise dedicated by ar-Razi (also known as Rhazes; 850-923 or 932) to Almansor, the Prince of Chorosan (with the text). "The manual, known as 'Nonus Almansoris', was popular among mediaeval physicians" (cf. GAL S I, p. 419). The work discusses special pathology but excluding pyrology and was one of the most popular textbooks at medical schools and faculties well into the Middle Ages (cf. Hirsch/H. I, 171). Rhazes is considered the greatest mediaeval physician next to Avicenna; he also conducted alchemical experiments. According to his biographer al-Gildaki, he was blinded for refusing to share his secrets of chemistry. - A woodcut on the final page of the preliminaries depicts ten different surgical instruments, including a tongue depressor, a forceps, and various instruments for cauterization. Several minor waterstains throughout, but generally a fine copy. Provenance: Handwritten ownership of the Jesuit College of Louvain, dated 1637, on the title page.
¶ VD 16, A 3222. Durling 249. Cf. Garrison/M. 3666.84; Poletti, p. 11; Wellcome I, 383; M. H. Fikri, Treasures from The Arab Scientific Legacy in Europe (Qatar 2009) no. 46, with double-page spread illustration on p. 82f. (1542 Venice edition).


The third copy known

Al-Tunisi (Muhammad Ibn Umar). Travels of an Arab Merchant in Sudan (the... Black Kingdoms of Central Africa). London, Chapman & Hall, 1854. London, Chapman & Hall, 1854. 8vo. XVI, 336 pp. Original blind-stamped cloth.

£ 3,960.-

Highly uncommon: the first English edition, translated and abridged by St. John Bayle from Perron's French translation of the author's "Tashhidh al-adhhan bi-sirat al-`Arab wa-al-Sudan". The book is divided into two sections - Dafur and the Wadai - and is an informative anecdotal account of the regions, including detailed accounts of the lineage and customs of the respective royal families and inhabitants. Also mentions the pilgrimage to Mekka undertaken by the author's grandfather and his subsequent life in Jeddah. - Slightly rubbed. Only two copies in institutional possession: OCLC lists records for Oxford and Cambridge only.
¶ OCLC 265431715.


A medieval celebration of the "valiant woman" - the first and only incunable edition

Albertus Magnus. Liber de muliere forti […]. [Cologne, Heinrich Quentell, 7 May 1499]. [Cologne, Heinrich Quentell, 7 May 1499]. 4to (135 x 193 mm). (160) ff. (signed aa-dd8; a-y8). With colophonic title-page on verso of y4. Bound in 16th or early 17th century gilt-ruled Spanish calf with gilt ornaments at corners and on spine as well as faded armorial or emblem on center of both boards. All edges stained dark blue. A few scored early inscriptions on title-page including of 'Petri Cendra'; front endpaper laid onto pastedown. Some unobtrusive staining to inner margins throughout due to binder's glue; a few leaves with dampstains to lower corners; and a few signatures foxed due to paperstock. A neat, broad-margined copy in an early binding.

£ 13,500.-

Editio princeps of this apocryphal text celebrating the Medieval ideal of the 'strong' or 'valiant' woman - certainly an unusual theme for an incunable, and an important reflection of idealized female conduct in the early Renaissance. The present copy is found in a well-preserved binding with ownership inscriptions indicating the book's migration to Spain perhaps as early as the late 16th century. - Long attributed to Albertus Magnus, the present work has enjoyed a recent resurgence in interest thanks to modern scholarship focusing on women in medieval Christianity. De Muliere Forti takes as its scriptural starting point verses 10-31 of Proverbs 31, which contain some of the most outspoken praises of women in the Bible: "Strength and beauty are her clothing… She hath opened her mouth to wisdom, and the law of clemency is on her tongue…" etc. In De Muliere Forti, various parts of a woman's body (feet, hands, arms, loins, breast, womb, etc) are treated as symbolic of the virtues of the 'valiant woman'; overall the text "show[s] readers how a male Dominican thought about gender and, in particular, women in the high Middle Ages" (The Valiant Woman, p. iii). On the other hand, an allegorical interpretation refers to the Church herself as the 'Valiant Woman', and "one could say that [the author] radicalizes the tradition by writing an entire theological treatise on ecclesiology on the basis of the Song [of Solomon]. The opening words of the book state simply: Laudes Ecclesiae describit Salomon in figura mulieris fortis, 'Solomon lists the praises of the Church in the figure of a valiant woman,' and the rest of the work gives a theological elaboration of that assumption, interspersed with philosophy and Aristotelian physics (for example on the formation of snow, in connection with verse 21)" (Wolters). - The title-page inscription of 'Petri Cendra' - a distinctly Catalonian surname - is somewhat puzzling, as it is the name of a famous 13th century (d. 1244) Dominican monk resident in Barcelona. The inscription may reflect a reader's authorial attribution - which would be an interesting piece of the historiographical puzzle - or, a later monk may have taken on the same nom de religion as his illustrious predecessor. - We note just two copies in auction records of the last 20 years, the last (2014) making € 12.500.
¶ Goff A-286. GW 699. ISTC ia00286000. Cf. also Ashley, Benedict M. & Holtz, Dominic M (eds.), The Valiant Woman. De muliere forti: a medieval commentary on Proverbs 31:10-31 (2013); and Wolters, Albert M. The Song of the Valiant Woman (Prov 31:10-31): A Pattern in the History of Interpretation (MA thesis, McMaster University, 1987).


An album amicorum interweaving De Bruyn's equestrian engravings and the handwritten entries of a Swabian pharmacist's learned friends

Album amicorum of Hans Georg Mergenthaler. Schintau and Melk, 1591-1597. Schintau and Melk, 1591-1597. 4to (146 x 192 mm). Latin and German ms. on paper. 86 ff. with 37 entries and 51 etchings from an equestrian costume book as well as 1 coloured coat of arms. Half calf binding (ca. 1800) with giltstamped spine label. Floral endpapers. Edges sprinkled red.

£ 8,360.-

A fine late 16th-century friendship album using an interleaved set of equestrian engravings (from a series by Abraham de Bruyn) to form a pre-illustrated album into which the owner's friends and eminent acquaintances could inscribe their names. While the humanistic tradition of such "alba" would reach its height in the mid-18th century and continued well into the early 19th, the fashion for alba containing woodcut or engraved illustrations to nest among the entries was a phenomenon of the later 16th and early 17th century. They could be acquired ready-made from several publishers, but as often as not, an owner might choose to assemble his own from material at hand. In this case, the Swabian pharmacist H. G. Mergenthaler used a selection from De Bruyn's "Diversarum Gentium Armatura Equestris" (Lipperheide 2898), published in 1577, fourteen years before he began his album, to form a record that charmingly interweaves the portraits of horsemen from throughout the world with the handwritten entries by the learned friends and acquaintances he made during his journeys as a student. - The eldest son of a pharmacist in Göppingen, in the duchy of Württemberg, Hans Georg Mergenthaler (b. 1566) took up his father's profession and in 1591 established himself in the Hungarian village of Sempte (now Šintava, Slovakia) and later in Melk in Lower Austria. "Mergenthaler's album provides a window into the jaunty travelling years of a young journeyman pharmacist. He inserted empty leaves into a fragmentary costume book, the engravings of which depict cavaliers, noblemen and other horsemen of various nations, thus obtaining an 86-leaf small quarto volume which he used as a friendship album to commemorate his travelling years as well as his friendships in later life. Despite their brevity the inscriptions provide vivid evidence of his life and circumstances. Born in Göppingen, he arrived in January 1591 at the small market town of Schintau in the Hungarian county Nyitra, where his cousin Job Rieder lived, and soon rose to the position of pharmacist to Count Salm" (cf. Blümml). - Contents: fol. 1r Johann Marx Rieter from Kornburg, 16 March 1596, with a painted coat of arms; 5r "Jodocus Pinsintus Bambergensis", pharmacist, 20 June 1595; 9r Bernard Buzin from Brussels; 17r Gregor Hartner, 1591 (calls Mergenthaler "his dear son"); 19v Egidius Netsch von Wartperg, 1594; 20v Hans Heinrich von Hubegk, 12 July 1591 ("Frisch, frey, frölich / Arm vnndt erlich"); 26v Matthias Weihenmair, 30 March 1591 ("Veracht mich nit vnnd die Meinen / Beschau vor Dich vnnd die Deinen / Sihe an Dich, vnnd nicht mich / Thu ich Vnrecht, so hüet Dich / Vrteil auch nit, wie Du mich siehst..."); 44v Hans Elliot, 12 March 1597; 53v Job Rieder, 22 Feb. 1591; 57v Jörg Zneymer, 22 Feb. 1591 ("Vil Wunder im Weinfaß"); 58r Adam Vuechselmeyer, 24 Feb. 1591 (Mergenthaler's predecessor at Sempte, quoting Martial, with a riddle, "Si caput est currit, Ventrem coniunge uolabit / Adde pedem commedis, et sine ventre bibis", and the solution in cipher: "Muscatum"); 60v Christoph Lemmel, 26 May 1591 ("Spes mea in Christo"); 64v Thomas Mayr, 28 Feb. 1596; 73v Hans Gayer, 15 Jan. 1591 (the earliest entry, in verse: "Offt einer kriegt und suecht sein Nutzen / Bis im auff d: Hauben wüerd ein Schmutzen / Drumb es dem gar ein süeß Ding ist / Der Krieg erfuer zu diser Frist"); 82v Veit Heyninger, 1591; 84r Georg Börkh, 1595; 85r Georg Megklin from Kempten, 12 Feb. 1591; 86r Joh. Martin Pfeffer, 12 Aug. 1591 ("Virtute decet, non sanguine, niti"); 86r Luitprecht Hilenpegg, 1591 ("G.E.H.", treasurer of the lordship of Schintau). - Of the 76 engravings in De Bruyn's costume series, Mergenthaler used 51; they include 13 plates of oriental interest showing Arabian, Ottoman, and Persian horsemen. All leaves mounted on strong paper, many showing small tears to the borders and paper flaws, some leaves with more significant loss. Occasional fading to ink; some foxing and stains. Covers rubbed and bumped, edges irregular. A charming survival.
¶ Blümml, Das Stammbuch des Apothekers Hans Georg Mergenthaler in Melk (1591-1597), Wien 1919, in: Zeitschrift des Allgemeinen österreichischen Apotheker-Vereines no 1 & 2.


A wonderfully preserved Baroque friendship album

[Album amicorum of Martin Ziegler]. Arte mnemoneutica [...] in gratiam Martini Ziegler Transilvani,... Patricy Stephanopolitani Anno M.DC.XXC. Wittenberg, Leiden, Dresden, Leipzig, Königstein etc., 1680-1703. Wittenberg, Leiden, Dresden, Leipzig, Königstein etc., 1680-1703. Oblong 8vo (ca 100 x 160 mm). 181 entries. With an armorial watercolour with motto, title with watercolour decoration, 5 drawings (3 of which full-page), and 1 engraved coat of arms, all on ca 300 ff. Contemporary calf binding with giltstamped cover borders, leading edges gilt, spine elaborately gilt, edges goffered and gilt. Gilstamped initials "MZCT" and date "1680" to upper cover (slightly rubbed).

£ 12,500.-

A wonderfully preserved Baroque friendship album giving a fairly precise record of its owner's youth and university years, containing numerous entries by eminent statesmen and scholars, especially at the University of Wittenberg in the 1680s. The first entry by "Ulricus Comtes a Kinsky et Tettau" (dated 12 April 1685; likely count Franz Ulrich Kinsky, 1634-99, Bohemian diplomat) is followed by those of several professors, including Abraham Calovius (1612-86), Johannes Andreas Quenstedt (1617-88), Johannes Deutschmann (1625-1706), Werner Theodor Martini (1626-85), Caspar Ziegler (1621-90), Conrad Samuel Schurzfleisch (1641-1708), Constantinus Ziegra (1617-91), Georg Caspar Kirchmaier (1635-1700), Michael Strauch (1635-1709), and Balthasar Stolberg (1640-84). There are also numerous scholars from Leipzig and Leiden, such as Georg Lehmann (1616-99), Johann Benedict Carpzov (1639-99), Valentin Alberti (1637-87), August Pfeiffer (1640-98), Adam Rechenberg (1642-1721), Gottfried Nicolaus Ittig (1645-1719), Jacob Trigland the younger (1652-1705), Frederik Dekkers (1644-1720), and Jacob Gronovius (1645-1716). Furthermore, there are entries by colleagues as well as by important men from Dresden (Christoph Bernhard, composer and music scholar), Magdeburg (Christian Scriver, hymnwriter), Hamburg (Joachim F. Gerstenbüttel, theologian), Jena (Joachim Andreas Danz, theologian and oriental scholar), Magdeburg (Balthasar Kindermann, theologian and poet), Erfurt (Christoph Klesch, theologian and poet), Kronstadt (Georg Wilhelm Löffelholz von Kolberg), Amsterdam, Bergfestung Königstein, and Buxtehude. - Martin Ziegler, a baker's son (born in Kronstadt [Brasov] in 1660, died in Brenndorf [Bod] in 1716), attended the Kronstadt grammar school before studying at Wittenberg from 1679 onwards. After nearly twelve years abroad he returned home, soon being named director of his old grammar school. He later became a priest at Tartlau but was suspended following a scandal. In 1713 he was elected priest of Brenndorf, but died a few years afterwards. He is remembered as a historian of his native city and of Transylvania (cf. Wurzbach). - Slight browning; occasional offsetting. Complete save for two removed leaves (likely empty, as they have left no trace of offsetting).
¶ Cf. Wurzbach LX, 62.


Mignon Theatre of Mecca

[Austrian Toy Theatre]. The Caravan to Mecca. The Halt in the... Desert. Vienna, M. Trentsensky / London, A. N. Myers & Co., [before 1856]. Vienna, M. Trentsensky / London, A. N. Myers & Co., [before 1856]. Folio (387 x 242 mm). 49 hand-coloured illustrations on 6 plates and hand-coloured folding lithogr. backdrop (desert scene; c. 580 x 224 mm). Original blue wrappers with lithogr. cover label.

£ 9,500.-

Charming Mignon Theatre of the kind popularized by the Viennese publisher Trentsensky around the mid-19th century and distributed throughout England by their London agent Myers, & Co. on the corner of Oxford and Berners Street. The desert landscape backdrop is to be populated by the pilgrims, camels, resting horses, etc., with plants, a large tent, a cooking fire, and many other details, all to be cut out from the present set of plates. Issued as "Exercises in Colouring", this set was clearly coloured by a trained contemporary artist rather than a dilettante. - The front cover is stained, spine splitting, but the plates are clean and well-preserved. Rarely encountered complete, well-coloured, and in the original state. Another example, prominently featured in the 2012 Hajj exhibition at the British Museum, was cut and mounted.
¶ Hajj. Journey to the heart of Islam. London, British Museum 2012, p. 125 (fig. 125).


The Father of Empiricism

Bacon, Francis, English philosopher, statesman, and scientist (1561-1626). Letter signed and subscribed ("assured/ fr. verulam Canc[ellarius]").... Gorhambury, 3. VIII. 1619. Gorhambury, 3. VIII. 1619. Folio. 1 page. With integral address leaf.

£ 22,000.-

Letter signed and subscribed ("assured/ fr. verulam Canc[ellarius]"), as Baron Verulam and Lord Chancellor, to Lord Zouch, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports, notifying him of a forthcoming legal case affecting his prerogative: "There are protest gone out at Mr Attorney Generalls prayer against Hugh Hugginson and Josias Ente concerning the busines against the Dutchmen in Starchamber. Out of a desire to extened the ancient priviledges and customes due to your place not to serve such protest within your jurisdiction without your leave and contente, I have thought it good hereby to desire your Lordship for his Majesties service, that you would cause them forthwith to be sent papers to answer Mr Attorneys Bill and abide such further proceedings as their case shall require". - Written in a secretarial hand, with the place, date and closing in an italic hand, as is Bacon's signature and subscription; contemporary endorsement. - From the Spiro Family Collection (Christie's, London, 3 December 2003, lot 59).
¶ Printed by Spedding; two other manuscript sources (although not our original) are listed by the online CELL calendar, The Correspondence of Francis Bacon.


The first printed record of Abu Dhabi and Dubai

Balbi, Gasparo. Viaggio dell'Indie Orientali. Venice, Camillo Borgominieri, 1590. Venice, Camillo Borgominieri, 1590. 8vo. (16), 149 ff. (misnumbered as 159), (1) p., (23) ff., with woodcut diagram (f. 144), woodcut headpieces and initials. Bound in 19th c. polished tan calf, gilt spine, gilt borders to covers, gilt turn-ins, marbled pastedowns, red edges, silk ribbon bookmark, stamped by binder "Dupré" on front flyleaf.

£ 125,000.-

First edition of this important travelogue by the Venetian state jeweller and gem merchant Gasparo Balbi, detailing his nine-year voyage from Venice to the Far East between 1579 and 1588, and a work of special historical interest for its eyewitness information about the Arabian Peninsula in this early period. In this book, Balbi was "the first writer to record the place names between al-Qatif and Oman that are still in use today" (G. R. King, p. 74). His "interest in the area lay in the pearls that came from the oyster beds of which the most extensive are those in the waters around al-Bahrayn, those off the Qatar peninsula and especially those in the western waters of Abu Dhabi. Either taking his information first-hand from a local individual or using a navigator's list, Balbi recorded place-names along the coast of modern Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and the Sultanate of Oman" (G. King, p. 248). According to Slot, "practically none of the names of places on the coast between Qatar and Ras al Khaima occur in other sources before the end of the eighteenth century" (p. 36). The present work is also of the highest significance for including "the first European record of the Bani Yas tribe" (UAE Yearbook 2006, p. 20), the largest and most important tribe of the Arabian Peninsula, from which emerged both the Al Nahyan and the Al Maktoum dynasties, today's ruling families of Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Balbi travelled extensively in the Arabian Peninsula in search of precious stones. He knew "the waters off the Abu Dhabi coast as the Sea of Qatar and mentions the following places now in UAE territory: Daas (Das), Emegorcenon (Qarnein), Anzevi (Azanah), Zerecho (Zirkuh), Delmephialmas (Dalma), Sirbeniast (Sir Bani Yas), Aldane (Dhanna), Cherizan (identified as Khor Qirqishan, just off Abu Dhabi island), Dibei (Dubai), Sarba (Sharjah), Agiman (Ajman), Emelgovien (Umm al-Quwain), Rasa-elchime (Ras al Khaimah), Sircorcor (Khor al-Khuwair), Debe (Dibba), Chorf (Khor Fakkan) and Chelb (Kalba)" (G. R. King, UAE: A New Perspective, 74). From Venice Balbi sailed for Aleppo, proceeding to Bir and from there overland to Baghdad, descending the Tigris to Basra, where he embarked for India. The "Viaggio dell'Indie Orientali" proved to be the most widely read source of information about India throughout the next century. In the tradition of mercantile guidebooks, such as the 14th century "Practica della mercatura" compiled by Pegolotti, this is one of the few secular travelogues to the Orient published in the 16th century. And in addition to providing the kind of practical information required by merchants trading in precious stones among other wares, Balbi, with a jeweler's eye for rarities, allows himself considerable license in recording his personal observations at exotic sights (e.g., the cave Temples of Elephanta and his enthusiasm for elephant tusks f. 100v) or in mentioning incidental occurrences along the way, such as his chance meeting in Goa with the famous embassy of Japanese legates on their way home. Balbi dates his stays to particular places in a precise manner, always gives a careful explanation of the local system of exchange (coins, weights, and measures), describes commercial routes in India in detail and even includes a monsoon calendar. Balbi also discusses Goa, Negapatam, and Pegu (Burma), the latter a source of great fascination owing to its sensational wealth and the section most frequently anthologized in travel collections. The "Viaggio dell'Indie Orientali" was reprinted in 1600 (also rare). The account was translated into Latin and equipped with illustrations in the 1606 'India' volume of the De Bry series, and a partial English translation (above all, the section on Pegu) subsequently appeared in Purchas. An Arabic translation was published in 2008, but a full English translation never appeared. - Minor rubbing and edge wear to spine and boards. Narrow upper margin, mend at f. 25, otherwise remarkably well preserved.
¶ BM-STC Italian 68. Howgego I, B7. Cordier Japonica 112. Brunet I, 618. Graesse I, 279. Kress Library of Economic Literature S 276. B. J. Slot, The Arabs of the Gulf, 1602-1784. G. King, "Delmephialmas and Sircorcor: Gasparo Balbi, Dalmâ, Julfâr and a Problem of Transliteration," Arabian Archeology and Epigraphy, vol. 17 (2006), pp. 248-252. UAE Yearbook 2006, p. 20. G. R. King, "The Coming of Islam and the Islamic Period in the UAE," in UAE: A New Perspective, I. Al-Abed & P. Hellyer (eds.), pp. 68-97. W. M. Floor, The Persian Gulf: A Political and Economic History of Five Port Cities, 1500-1730. Lach, Asia in the Making of Europe, I.1, 473-475. Penrose, Travel and Discovery, 198. Placido Zurla, Di Marco Polo e degli altri viaggiatori veneziani piu illustri, II, 258-265. J. Charpentier, "Cesare di Fedrici and Gasparo Balbi," Indian Antiquary LIII (1924), pp. 51-54.


The Port of Beirut, linking East and West

[Beirut Port]. Compagnie Impériale Ottomane du Port, des Quais et... Entrepôts de Beyrouth. Assemblée Générale Ordinaire et Extraordinaire [...]. Rapport du Conseil d'Administration. Rapport des Commissaires des Comptes. Résolutions de l'Assemblée. Paris, Imprimerie et librairie centrales des chemins de fer, 1889-1922. Paris, Imprimerie et librairie centrales des chemins de fer, 1889-1922. Large 4to. All 31 issues, comprising a total of 774 pp. (some lithographic, others published as a typescript, but mostly letterpress), preserving the original printed wrappers. With 2 folding plans. Bound in 1920s green half calf over marbled boards.

£ 7,480.-

Rare collection of the annual reports published by the administrative board of the Beirut Port holding company: the complete stretch from 1889 (when work on the harbor began) to 1922. - Even since the 1860s, the old harbour of Beirut, 150 by 100 metres in length and a mere two metres deep, was rapidly becoming too small for the ever-expanding volume of traffic. In 1887 a consortium was formed of the Compagnie Impériale Ottomane de la Route Beyrouth à Damas, the Ottoman Bank, the Comptoir d'Escompte de Paris, the Banque de Paris et des Pays-Bas, and the Compagnie des Messageries Maritimes. Reincorporated as the Paris-based "Compagnie Impériale Ottomane du Port, des Quais et Entrepôts de Beyrouth", they obtained a concession from the Porte in 1888, and construction was completed in 1895. "The new harbor, located further to the east, provided deeper anchorage (two to six meters) next to an 800-meter-long pier running almost parallel to the coast and protected by a breakwater 350 meters long. The dock area covered twenty-one hectares, with vast warehouses whose metal cladding had been designed by Gustave Eiffel" (Kassir, p. 119). Located at the intersection of Europe, Asia and Africa, Beirut quickly became one of the principal ports between Europe and the Near East. Trade was hampered during the years of the First World War, but Beirut still received "more ships than any other port along the Syrian coast" (ibid., p. 122). - The first seven reports, covering the building phase, from 1889 to 1894, are printed as lithographs; from 1895 onwards they are letterpress, providing a full account of assets and liabilities, profits and losses, and resolutions adopted by the board, accompanied by extensive sets of tables. The publication was interrupted only in the war years, when the company was temporarily dispossessed, for which time the present volume instead contains a "Historique" and a "Memorandum", both published as typescripts. The series was resumed in 1921. - This collection bound for the "Banque de Syrie et du Liban" with their bookplate on the pastedown. Binding rubbed and chafed, but internally a very well-preserved set.
¶ Cf. Samir Kaffir, Beirut (UCA, 2010).


Editio princeps of the Gospels in Arabic (Darlow/M.)

[Biblia arabica - NT]. Evangelium Sanctum Domini nostri Iesu Christi conscriptum a... quatuor Evangelistis sanctis, id est Matthaeo, Marco, Luca et Iohanne. Rome, typographia Medicea, 1590(-1591). Rome, typographia Medicea, 1590(-1591). Folio. 368 pp. With 149 large woodcuts. Contemporary paper wrappers (edge and spine defects).

£ 15,800.-

Rare first edition of the Gospels in Arabic; the first work to be issued from the Medicean Press, directed by G. B. Raimondi. Printed in Granjon's famous large fount, generally considered the first satisfactory Arabic printing type and appears here for the first time. Apart from the Latin title and colophon, the book is in Arabic throughout. Also in 1591 an Arabic-Latin edition was issued, more common than the present one and reprinted in 1619 and 1774. Illustrated with 149 large woodcuts from 67 blocks by Leonardo Parasole after Antonio Tempesta. - Some browning and waterstaining throughout; a few marginal tears; binding loosened. Untrimmed in the original temporary wrappers as issued. The Hauck copy fetched $75,000 at Sotheby's in 2006.
¶ Adams B 1822. Mortimer 64. Darlow/Moule 1636. Fück 54. Schnurrer 318. Smitskamp 374.


Gun-running from Hejaz into Egypt: "Secret & Urgent"

[British Egypt Command]. Davidson, Roy Austin, British Army captain (1886-1980). Red Sea Report. Confidential. Secret army report, signed. Cairo, 1919. Cairo, 1919. Folio (36 x 23 cm), with a few 4to inserts. A total of 117 leaves, mostly typewritten (some on both sides) but 11 pp. handwritten. Includes a photograph of a steamer off the coast of Egypt (8 x 13.5 cm) and a large (81 x 58 cm) lithographed map, folded, hand-coloured and annotated.

£ 3,950.-

An archival folder containing a trove of British military correspondence, along with an extensive report regarding a British reconnaissance expedition undertaken in July 1919 to explore the best way to prevent the smuggling of arms and other illicit wares into British-controlled Egypt from Hejaz and the eastern coast of the Red Sea. The party was commanded by Captain R. A. Davidson of the Denbighshire Yeomanry, who had won a Military Cross at the capture of the Siwa Oasis in Egypt's Western Desert in February 1917. Davidson was also responsible for drawing up the report, the extensive typescript of which is present here ("Report of a Reconaissance of the Red Sea Coast and Means Suggested for the Prevention of Illicit Traffic in Arms"). The mission was to establish by which combination of Seaplane Patrols, Light Car Patrols, and Camel Patrols the objective might best be met, and which other preventative measures might be suggested. Davidson reported that "the bulk of the work must necessarily fall on the Camel Patrols", while "Light Car Patrols would not be used for patrolling the coast itself but would be useful as a second line" and there was "no occasion for the use of Seaplanes". "Sea Patrols of Sloops on the Egyptian side" would be "essential", and "Dhow traffic to be restricted as regards the landing of cargoes to certain selected ports". Ports on the Arabian coast to be privileged include Aqaba, Yanbu, Jeddah, and Hodeidah; other places are singled out as particular sources of trouble: "Kuweh - Dhow anchorage a mile southward of Arab fishing village. Inhabitants are Heteim Arabs with a reputation for smuggling". Davidson cautions that "any tendency to use the Red Sea Coast as a reformatory for the more undesirable minor officials might have the result of nullifiying to a large extent the efforts of the patrols". - Wrinkled and stained, dog-ears, tears, edge and corner flaws throughout, but well-legible.


Travelling the plains of the Hauran

Buckingham, James Silk. Travels among the Arab Tribes Inhabiting the Countries... East of Syria and Palestine. London, printed for Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, Brown and Green, 1825. London, printed for Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, Brown and Green, 1825. XV, (1), 669, (1) pp. With a folding engraved map and 28 wood-engraved vignettes as chapter headings. Half brown calf over marbled boards, spine compartments ruled and decorated in gilt, burgundy morocco gilt lettering label. 4to.

£ 4,000.-

First edition. James Silk Buckingham (1786-1855), founder of the Calcutta Journal, Oriental Herald and Colonial Review, The Sphynx, and The Argus, social reformer and founding member of the British and Foreign Institute, travelled in the Middle East as a sea captain and merchant. This work relates the part of his travels which took him through Nazareth, the plains of the Hauran, Damascus, Tripoli, Lebanon and Balbec to Aleppo. An appendix refutes the charges of plagiarism brought by Burckhardt and Bankes against his Travels in Palestine. - Occasional light foxing and staining, slight offsetting from the engraved map to the titled. A very good copy.
¶ Blackmer 232. Tobler 143. Röhricht 1650. Howgego II, B69, p. 78.


The first Westerner to visit the Holy Cities

Burckhardt, Johann Ludwig (John Lewis). Travels in Arabia, comprehending an account of those... territories in Hedjaz which the Mohammedans regard as sacred. London, Henry Colburn, 1829. London, Henry Colburn, 1829. Large 4to (26 x 21 cm). XVI, 478 pp. With five lithogr. maps (one folding). 19th century three-quarters green levant with prettily gilt spine. Marbled endpapers. All edges gilt.

£ 5,500.-

First edition (the second of the same year was in two volumes, octavo). Burckhardt travelled disguised as an Arab, making his notes clandestinely. This work deals primarily with his travels to Mecca and Djidda, Medina and Yembo. The Lausanne-born Burckhardt (1784-1817) was a remarkable character, the first Westerner to visit the Holy Cities. In the guise of a pilgrim "he proceeded to perform the rites of pilgrimage at Mekka, go round the Kaaba, sacrifice, &c., and in every respect acquitted himself as a good Muslim. No Christian or European had ever accomplished this feat before; and the penalty of discovery would probably have been death. [...] Burckhardt possessed the highest qualifications of a traveller. Daring and yet prudent, a close and accurate observer, with an intimate knowledge of the people among whom he travelled, their manners and their language, he was able to accomplish feats of exploration which to others would have been impossible" (Stanley Lane-Poole, in: DNB VII, 293f.). - Old stamp of the "Belcher Library" (Gaysville, Vermont) on first blank, some toning and brownstaining. Rare.
¶ Macro, Bibliography of the Arabian Peninsula, 627. Howgego II, B76. Weber I, 168. Gay 3606. Graesse I, 575. Cf. Blackmer 239. Henze I, 407. Ibrahim-Hilmy I, 106 (2nd ed. only). Not in Atabey.


To the Greek patriot Giorgio Vitali

Byron, George Gordon Noel, British poet and leading figure in the Romantic movement (1788-1824). Letter signed (as "Noel Byron, Pair d'Angleterre"). Genoa, 9. VII. 1823. Genoa, 9. VII. 1823. 4to. ¾ page. Bifolium with integral address-leaf.

£ 9,500.-

This evocative letter, written in Italian and in the hand of Count Pietro Gamba (the brother of his beloved Teresa Guiccioli), was written while Byron was making his final preparations for his voyage to Greece, where he was to die nine months later "that Greece may still be free". The recipient is the Greek patriot Giorgio Vitali (1776-1854) at Leghorn, from an ancient Venetian family and the commander of the Ionic vessel "Hercules" that Byron wanted to take. Byron states that in order not to lose a moment of his time, he has resolved not to stop at Leghorn except to take him on board along with another English gentleman (James Hamilton Browne), and asks Vitali to tell his compatriots to have any despatches and instructions relating to his mission ready for his arrival. - Byron was to bid farewell to Teresa and board the "Hercules" on 13 July. However, his departure was to be delayed by calms, and then a storm. By some accounts, his mood at this time was despondent, almost fatalistic. During the delay he went on shore again to visit the house outside Genoa that he had shared with Teresa; as her brother recalled: "His conversation was somewhat melancholy on our way to Albaro, he spoke much of his past life, and of uncertainty of the future, 'where', said he, 'shall we be in a year?'" (quoted by Leslie A. Marchand, Byron: A Biography [1957] III, 1089). They eventually set sail from Genoa on the 16th. During the couple of days spent at Leghorn, Byron received a verse-tribute from Goethe and dashed off his famous reply: "I sailed from Genoa some days ago - was driven back by a Gale of Wind - and have since sailed again - and arrived here (Leghorn) this morning to receive on board some Greek passengers for their struggling country" (22 July 1823). They set sail once again on 24 July, and finally reached Cephalonia on 2 August. - In fine condition.


Dedication copy, printed in Arabic throughout

Calligaris, Louis. Kitab sirat Napoleon al-Awwal. Histoire de l'Empereur Napoleon... Ier. Paris, (typographie Arbieu), 1856. Paris, (typographie Arbieu), 1856. Large 8vo. (4), 7, (1), (12), 584 pp. With 12 portraits and 5 engraved plates as well as several maps and plans in the text. Title page in French and Arabic. Green half calf with gilt crowned "N" to spine and lower board, upper board with gilt dedication "Offert a Mr le Comte de Breteuil". Moirée endpapers. All edges gilt.

£ 6,500.-

First edition, rare. - Historical work on Emperor Napoleon I by Colonel Louis (Luigi) Calligaris (1808-70). Apart from his work as orientalist, Calligaris is remembered for founding the military academy at Tunis and for serving as aide-de-camp to the monarch of Tunisia. In 1861 he was appointed professor of Arab studies at the University of Turin, a position he held until his death. - The 12 portrait plates include Napoléon, Joséphine, Napoléon III, and Louis Philippe; the engravings show the Estates General, the Battle of Arcole, the Battle of the Pyramids, etc. - Occasional brownstaining. Binding slightly rubbed, endpapers torn, otherwise in good condition. A remarkable typographic effort of the Second French Empire, this copy a gift for the diplomat and statesman Achille Le Tonnelier de Breteuil (1781-1864), who had already served Napoleon I in various capacities and was made a member of the Senate in 1852.
¶ Ibrahim-Hilmy II, 58.


The Life of Madame Candida Xu

[Candida Xu / Couplet, Philippe]. Histoire d'une Dame Chrétienne de la Chine. Ou... par Occasion les Usages de ces Peuples, l'établissement de la Religion, les manieres des Missionnaires, & les Exercices de Pieté des nouveaux Chrétiens sont expliquez. Paris, Estienne Michallet, 1688. Paris, Estienne Michallet, 1688. 8vo. (1) ff., 152 pp., (1) f., plus engraved portrait of "Madame Candide Hiu" and 3 further folding engraved plates. Bound in contemporary sheep, spine gilt.

£ 5,800.-

Rare first edition - seldom found complete with all four engraved plates - of perhaps the first full-length Western biography of a Chinese woman. Candida Xu (1607-80) was the grand-daughter of the Ming Dynasty polymath and government official Xu Guangqi (1562-1633), himself an early convert to the Christianity. "The purpose of Couplet's biography was to inspire support for the Chinese mission and to generate increased devotion among Catholic women" (Western Travellers in China, p. 26). - Born in Shanghai, Candida moved to Songjiang after her marriage where she bore eight children to her non-Christian husband. Widowed at the age of 46, she turned her attention to promoting Christianity - not just by financial means, but by embarking on a grand tour of China to personally foster the development of that religion through appointments of priests and the building of churches. Accompanied by her son Basil, she travelled to Hubei, Nanchang, Chengdu, Chongquing, Kaifeng, etc., commissioning some 30 churches in all. - Alongside the striking full-length portrait of a seated Candida Xu, one of the engravings depicts her gravestone, exemplifying the successful admixture of Chinese elements into Jesuit Christianity which would become so controversial in ensuing decades. On the folding plate we thus find a large cross decorated with Chinese extracts (and Cantonese transliterations) from the Apostles' Creed, but also giving prominence to Candida's defining traits with the Chinese characters for faith, hope, and love. - De Backer/Sommervogel suggests that the present work is a translation by Pierre Joseph d'Orléans from Couplet's unpublished Latin manuscript, brought to Europe in 1680 upon the priest's return from his Chinese mission. We note that the work is sometimes encountered incomplete (e.g., the Sotheby's copy with only 2 plates sold in 2016). - A very good copy.
¶ Cordier (Sinica) 832. Western Travellers in China 26. Löwendahl 201 [or 209]. De Backer/S. II, 1563, 8. Cf. also G. King, "Candida Xu and the Growth of Christianity in China in the 17th Century", Monumenta Serica Vol. 46 (1998), pp. 49-66 ("arguably the most influential Chinese Christian woman of the seventeenth century"); T. Brook, "Couplet's Biography of Madame Candida Xu (1607-1680)", Sino-Western Cultural Relations Vol. 17 (1998); N. Golvers, "Le Role de la Femme dans la Mission Catholique au Dix-Septieme Siecle au Jiangnan: Philippe Couplet et sa Biographie de Candida Xu (1607-1680)," Courier Verbiest, Vol X (1998).


Seeking a bride

Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia (1729-1796). Autograph letter signed ("Caterina"). No place, 13. VI. [1773]. No place, 13. VI. [1773]. Small 4to. 2/3 page.

£ 9,500.-

To Lieutenant General Friedrich Wilhelm von Baur about the visit of the Countess Palatine Caroline of Deuxponts, whom she had invited together with three of her daughters to find a fiancée for her son, the future Emperor Paul I of Russia, letting him know that the Countess would spend a night in Yamburg and would have lunch with her in Gatchina on Saturday: "Herr General Lieutenant die Landgräfin wird diese nacht in Yambourg schlafen [...] den Sonabend aber zu Gatschina mit mir den mittag speisen [...]". - The visit had been a success: Paul was to marry Caroline's daughter Wilhelmina Louisa the very same year.


''Indeed I care very little whether I miss or not": cramming for his finals, with possibly the earliest manuscript of "To the great Metropolis", hitherto unknown

Clough, Arthur Hugh, English poet (1819-1861). Autograph letter signed ("A. H. Clough"), with the... draft of a poem. [Oxford], "Sunday Morning ('Tis the Second Morn of May)", 2 May [1841]. [Oxford], "Sunday Morning ('Tis the Second Morn of May)", 2 May [1841]. 3 pp. on bifolium with integral address panel, to the "Revd. T. Burbidge, Rugby". One penny postage stamp. Traces of seal. Includes an photographic albumen print copy of a portrait of Clough.

£ 7,500.-

A very early, unknown letter to his friend Thomas Burbidge (1816-92) at Rugby, written while Clough was preparing for his final exams at Balliol: "My dear Burbidge, You must not let another washing-day go by without writing to me. I am not very hard at work, for I am very tired &, since Yesterday Morning, not over well; perhaps in part owing to the heat which was more than worthy of May-day. I find that I have forgotten my books by wholesale, & I really cannot get them up again; so I take my chance; & indeed I care very little whether I miss or not. - I fell into another Sonnet the other day; which I will send you to fill up the half sheet, & for that reason only, I am sure. / To the great Metropolis. / Traffic, to speak from knowledge scarce begun, / I saw & travelling & fashion. - Yea, / And if that Competition & display / Make a great Capital, then thou art one, / One, it may be, unrivalled neath the Sun. / But [outward, corrected to:] sovereign Symbol of the great and good, / True Royalty & genuine Statesmanhood, / Nobleness, learning, Piety was none. / If such realities indeed there are / Working within, unsignified, tis well; / The Stranger's fancy of the thing thou art / Is rather truly of a huge Bazaar, / A railway-terminus, a gay Hotel, / Anything but a mighty Nation's heart. - Or should we begin better / If speak I may from knowledge but begun / Travelling there is, traffic, & fashion; - Yea, / If Stir & Competition &c." - Clough had first visited London that April - on two weeks' vacation for extra tuition from a science tutor, Robert Lowe - and the satirical sonnet he produced reveals how little he must have enjoyed his stay. The poem was first published in 1951 in Lowry's, Norrington's and Mulhauser's edition, from a fair copy in the author's 1839-42 notebook. The present textual witness, hitherto unknown, provides interesting variations and amendments and may well pre-date the fair copy, which is simply annotated "April 1841". - Clough's ostensible indifference toward the results of his imminent examinations - the first paper would be written a week later, on 10 May, and the final oral exam was due for the 19th - was given the lie when, upon obtaining merely second class honours, he at once walked all the way to Rugby to confess to Dr. Arnold, "I have failed".
¶ Unpublished in F. L. Mulhauser (ed.), The Correspondence of Arthur Hugh Clough (OUP 1957), nor in his census of known letters.


Fine Ottoman costume watercolours, with distinguished provenance

[Costume drawings]. An album of eight fine watercolour drawings depicting... the costumes of Constantinople and the Ottoman World. Constantinople, later 16th century. 4to (168 x 212 mm). 8 watercolour drawings, some heightened with white or gold, captioned in German in a late 16th-c. hand, on 8 leaves and a further 24 blank leaves (for the watermark cf. Briquet 917: Nuremberg 1554 or 1565-82). Contemporary limp vellum without ties.

£ 65,000.-

An album of eight splendid costume paintings, by a talented, unidentified artist who may have been a member of the entourage of a German ambassador to the Porte. The subjects in this collection are captioned: "Der Kriechen Patriarch" (the Greek Patriarch); "Der Türckisch Keiser" (the Turkish Sultan); "Der Türckisch Babst" (the Grand Mufti); "Türckische weiber wie sie pflegen auf der gaßen zu gehen" (Turkish women, as it is their wont to dress in the street); "Also sizen die Türckischen weiber" (Thus sit the Turkish women); "Ein Epirotische frau wie sie in Iren Heusern zu Galata pflegen zu gehen" (a woman of Epirus, as they walk about in their houses in Galata); "Ein Kriegische fraw" (a Greek woman); and "Ein Armenerin" (an Armenian woman). - Great attention to both accuracy and details is shown: indeed, the suite may be related to another set of similar drawings in the Gennadius Library (A896 B), dated to about 1573 (cf. Blackmer Cat.). There is also some resemblance in style and presentation to certain of the costume illustrations in Nicolas de Nicolay's Navigations (1568, and later editions). Although Nicolay travelled in the Levant in the 1550s and was long thought to have drawn his costume subjects from life, doubt has been cast on this view, and it is now generally considered that he drew his subjects from the work of other artists and illustrators. - A little light dust-soiling, binding with minor wear, soiling and wormholes. Provenance: from the collection of Ferdinand Sigismund Kress von Kressenstein (1641-1704), councilman of Nuremberg whose father signed the Peace of Westphalia treaty (his armorial bookplate on the front pastedown). Later in the library of Franz Joseph II, Prince of Liechtenstein (1906-89), with his armorial bookplate on the flyleaf. Latterly in the collection of Henry Myron Blackmer II (1923-88), with his bookplate to the pastedown, sold at Sotheby's in 1989 (Blackmer sale, lot 80) and purchased by Herry W. Schaefer (1934-2016).
¶ Blackmer 1887 (with two illustrations: p. 42 and frontispiece facing p. 1). Cf. Haydn Williams, "Additional printed sources for Ligozzi's series of figures of the Ottoman Empire", in: Master Drawings, vol. 51, no. 2 [Summer 2013], pp. 195-220; Metin And, Istanbul in the 16th century: the city, the palace, daily life (Istanbul, 1994).


Vesalius's teacher on blood vessels: heavily annotated by a 16th century medical student

Dubois (Sylvius), Jacques. In Hippocratis et Galeni physiologiae partem anatomicam isagoge [...]. Paris, Aegidius Gorbin, 1561. Paris, Aegidius Gorbin, 1561. 8vo. 76 ff. - (Bound with) II: The same. Commentarius in Claudii Galeni de ossibus ad tyrones libellum [...]. Ibid., 1561. 37, (3) ff. Contemporary limp vellum (wanting ties).

£ 8,500.-

Two medical textbooks by the Parisian anatomist Dubois, widely used by French medical students in the mid-16th century. The present volume is heavily annotated by a contemporary owner who signs his name as "Mirard" (?) on the first title-page. The annotations are particularly extensive in the sections on blood vessels, muscles, and nerves. Dubois (1478-1555, Latinized as "Sylvius") was the first to describe venous valves, which he injected with coloured liquids (although their function was discovered only later by William Harvey), and is credited with first having given names to the various muscles, previously simply numbered. His blind reverence for the ancient physicians, especially Galen, involved him in a public controversy with his most famous student, Vesalius, who had dared to expose the errors of the Greeks. A former classicist, Dubois is also the author of the first French grammar to be published in France. - Some waterstaining near end, the final leaf showing severe paper flaws with some loss to the index. The first 50 ff. show noticeable worming to the gutter, stronger near the beginning, but mostly without loss to text. An additional handwritten ownership from Montpellier, another center of French medical learning (signed "G. B. Minet", dated 1709), at the bottom of the title page.
¶ Durling 1259 & 1236. Wellcome I, 6183 & 6184. Adams S 2181 & S 2170. OCLC 14317273 & 1025189760. Cf. BM-STC French 141. Hirsch II, 220f.


Travels to Ouadây

El-Tounsy [Cheykh Mohammed Ibn-Omar]. Voyage au Ouaday, traduit de l'Arabe par le... Dr Perron, directeur de l'Ecole de médecine du Kaire […]. Ouvrage accompagné de cartes et de planches et du portrait du Cheykh, publié par le Dr Perron et M. Jomard, membre de l'Institut […]. Ouvrage précédé d'une préface de ce dernier, contenant des remarques historiques et géographiques, et faisant suite au Voyage au Dârfour. Paris, Benjamin Duprat, Arthus Bertrand, Franck, Renouard, Gide, 1851. Paris, Benjamin Duprat, Arthus Bertrand, Franck, Renouard, Gide, 1851. Large 8vo. (4), LXXV, (1), 756 pp. (pp. 753-756 are duplicated). With portrait of El-Tounsy and 9 lithographed plates of portraits, costumes, arms, instruments and maps. Contemp. half garnet-red roan, smooth spine with gilt fillets, green title labels.

£ 7,500.-

Very rare first edition. Valued account of a journey made by an Ulema from Cairo, Sheikh Mohammed El-Tounsy, to a relatively unknown region of North Africa: Ouaday or Seleih Dar, located south of the Libyan desert and to the west of Darfur. In addition to the relation, this includes chapters on Egypt and the Maghreb as well as significant explanatory notes followed by seven vocabularies: Ouadayen, Forien, Fertyt, Barnaouyen, Baguirmien, Toubou and Fezzanais. This volume is much rarer than the "Voyage au Dârfour" by the same author, published by Dr. Perron in 1846. - Slight dampstains to plates 2, 3 and 4. Good copy.
¶ Gay 2786. Brunet VI, 20821.


First edition of Engels's first book

Engels, Friedrich. Die Lage der arbeitenden Klasse in England. Leipzig, Otto Wigand, 1845. Leipzig, Otto Wigand, 1845. 8vo. 358, (2) pp. (including a single leaf of advertisements). With a lithographic folding map of Manchester. Contemporary half calf over pebbled cloth boards; giltstamped spine sympathetically repaired. White moirée endpapers.

£ 83,600.-

First edition of Engels's first book, written in Manchester in his early twenties, with a three-page preface in English addressed "to the working classes of Great-Britain". Engels exposed the horrific living conditions which the Industrial Revolution had entailed for workers in large industrial cities such as Manchester and Liverpool: mortality from disease was four times that in the surrounding countryside, and mortality from convulsions was ten times as high. Originally addressed to a German audience, the book is considered a classic account of the universal condition of the industrial working class during its time. After their first meeting in 1844, Marx read and was profoundly impressed by the book. It was not translated into English until 1887, as "The Condition of the Working Class in England in 1844". - Hinges professionally repaired. Some light browning throughout, mainly confined to margins, but on the whole quite crisp and clean. A remarkably well preserved copy.
¶ Stammhammer I, 72, 8. Marx-Engels Erstdrucke p. 10 (with illustration p. 8). Rubel p. 243, no. 18 ("338 p." in error). MEGA I, 4, 7-285.


The rarest treatise on falconry

Friedrich II von Hohenstaufen. Reliqua librorum Friderici II. Imperatoris, de arte venandi... cum avibus, cum Manfredi Regis additionibus. Ex membranis vetustis nun primum edita. Albertus Magnus de falconibus, asturibus, & accipitribus. Augsburg, Johannes Praetorius (Hans Schultes), 1596. Augsburg, Johannes Praetorius (Hans Schultes), 1596. 8vo. (16), 414, (2) pp. With magnificent double-page woodcut illustration and woodcut printer's device on title page (repeated on recto of final leaf). 17th century mottled calf, spine gilt.

£ 22,000.-

First edition, extremely rare. "The first edition of a classic on hawking, held to be the best and most comprehensive treatise, which, with original Italian and Latin manuscripts, has been the study and research by many writers" (Schwerdt). This classic treatise on ornithology and falconry was written by Frederick II (1194-1250), Holy Roman Emperor. Frederick's original manuscript is lost, but his work exists in two book versions, by his two sons Manfredi and Enzo. The most famous copy of this treatise is the manuscript commissioned by Manfredi, between 1258 and 1266, and contains twelve short additions made by himself. The present publication is the editio princeps of that version; the "1560 Venice" and "1578 Basel" editions mentioned by Lallemant, Souhart, etc. are spurious. The woodcut faithfully reproduces one of the miniatures in Manfredi's version (in the Vatican library): an expressive image of the Emperor with two falconers at his side. Also includes the treatise "De Falconibus Asturibus, & Accipitribus" (p. 357 ff.) by a German dominican philosopher and theologian Alberto Magno, written in Cologne between 1262 and 1280 and first time printed in Rome in 1478.
¶ VD 16, F 2826. BM-STC 319. Adams F, 982. Ceresoli 243. Harting 308. Pichon 201. Nissen IVB 333. Thiébaud 431. Jeanson 1485. Lindner 643.01. Schwerdt I, 187. Souhart 197. Graesse II, 635. Ebert 7925.


In defence of womanhood

Gedik, Simon. Defensio sexus muliebris, opposita futilissimae disputationi recens editae,... qua suppresso authoris & typographi nomine blaspheme contenditur, mulieres homines non esse. Leipzig, Michael Lantzenberger [für Henning Grosse], 1595. Leipzig, Michael Lantzenberger [für Henning Grosse], 1595. 4to. (62) pp., last bl. f. With woodcut printer's device on t. p. (Bound with) II: Admonitio theologicae facultatis in Academia Witebergensi, ad scholasticam iuventutem, de libello famoso & blasphemo recens sparso, cuius titulus est: Disputatio nova contra mulieres, qua ostenditur, eas homines non esse. Wittenberg, Matthäus Welack's widow, 1595. (12) pp. Boards (c. 1900). Edges sprinkled in red.

£ 3,000.-

The two most important literary reactions to the scandalous anonymous antifeminist polemic, "Disputatio nova contra mulieres, qua probatur eas homines non esse" (no place, 1595; VD 16, ZV 4618), which had denied the humanity of women (and thus their capacity for salvation). The pamphlet sparked a surge of 16th and 17th century satires. The theology department in Wittenberg warned its students against reading the book, while the Leipzig Professor of Hebrew, Simon Gediccus (1551-1631), published an apology of the female sex in which he refutes the pamphlet word for word. - Somewhat browned throughout due to paper; ms. note on last leaf. From the collection of the German lawyer Christian Friedrich Eberhard (1753-1818) with his bookplate on the front pastedown. Both works are very rare; neither one in German auction records since 1950.
¶ I: VD 16, G 652. - II: VD 16, W 3701.


Writing materials for the "Elective Affinities" and the "Theory of Colours"

Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von, poet (1749-1832). Autograph letter signed ("Goethe"). Weimar, 14. IV. 1809. Weimar, 14. IV. 1809. 4to. ½ p. on blue paper (Watermark: crowned coat of arms of Saxony in wreath with antiqua initials "JGH").

£ 10,500.-

Notice of receipt for writing materials: "Von herzoglicher geheimer Canzlei einige Schreibmaterialien erhalten zu haben bescheinige [...]". At the time Goethe was working on his last novel "Elective Affinities" that would be published the same year and on his "Theory of Colours", published the following year. - With traces of folding. Well preserved.


Weaving pattern book

Häusser, Carl (et al.). Weaving pattern book. Unteröwisheim near Bruchsal (Baden), ca 1833-1888. Unteröwisheim near Bruchsal (Baden), ca 1833-1888. 4to (175 x 210 mm). German manuscript on paper. 99 (instead of 102) ff., including 62 numbered ff. of red squared paper (printed by the lithographer Joseph Scholz in Mainz) with ink designs for weaving patterns and 13 blanks at the end. Two leaves and one folded leaf with additional notes and designs, loosely inserted. Contemporary half calf with marbled boards.

£ 3,000.-

An exceedingly rare survival: an extensive and early handwritten weaving pattern book compiled over decades, passed down through generations and in use for at least half a century by the Häußer family of weavers from Unteröwisheim in Baden. The designs are drawn in black ink on specially lithographed red squared paper, each square measuring slightly less than 1.5 millimetres: presentations of the finished motifs in their horizontal and vertical grid of warp and weft, but also diagrams indicating the number of threads per row. Many patterns bear colourful names such as "Zum großen Stern mit dem Lafentel", "Zum Kreuz-Gitter mit dem Lafentel", "Zum Gleeblättchen mit dem Körbchen", "Granz zum Sternchen", "Zum Gegenkreuz mit versetzt gebrochenen Streifen", "Baumgranz zum Schellenbaum", "Schellenbaum mit dem Baumgranz" ("gezeichnet am 9. April 1843"), etc. Among the weavers who have signed and frequently dated their names are "Carl Häusser, Webermeister in Unterowisheim, den 2ten Juli 1840" (to front flyleaf); "Chr. Haeuser in Unteröwisheim" (fol. 12r), "Karl Häusser 1850" (fol. 16v), "Georg Christian Häuser Weber in Unteröwisheim am 17. Februar 1888 (to fol. 19r); "Karl Häuser 1881" and date "Unteröwisheim, den 16. März 1887" (to a sheet loosely inserted at the end). Intriguingly, one signature is even rendered as a weaving pattern (no. 49), which if so executed would state the name of the maker in the fabric itself. Also, there are various scattered dates from 1841, 1843, 1848 and 1850. The book includes a number of extensive tables ("Tabelle über Regelmässige Ordnung im Zetteln mit zehn Spulen bis zu dreisig wie viel man auf jede Breite Gäng und Faden rechnet auf zweischäftige Arbeit", or "Leine Garn Regelmäßig ins Geschirr zu stellen auf die neubadische [und alte] Ehl auf zweischäftige Arbeit") that indicate the number of threads and warps per bobbin, and similar tables for old and new cubits. Also, the writers provide illustrated written instructions in a well-legible German script for various weaving techniques, e.g. "Sogenannte Immenlöchlein zu machen wird nach obigem Zug eingezogen (dreischäftig) und ebenso getreten". The book was also used for the odd quick calculation (multiplications) necessitated by the trade, while the full-page inscription of the first three stanzas of a popular late 18th century drinking song in the beginning of the book (dated "Mai 1833") provides a glimpse into what little leisure time the strenuous life of the cloth weaver afforded. - The patterns are not dissimilar to their counterparts in contemporaneous printed collections, all of which today are of the utmost rarity. Even later editions of such books have proved almost unobtainable, as they typically remained in heavy workshop use, often for more than a century, until they literally fell to pieces. Thus, it is all the more surprising to find a manuscript specimen in such good overall condition, aside from the quite heavy fingerstaining, particularly as this, too, clearly remained in use within a family of weavers for more than 50 years. - Binding rubbed; occasional waterstaining; a few gatherings loosened, but altogether well preserved. An extraordinarily rare survival.


Collection of Middle Eastern source texts on Russia

Hammer-Purgstall, Joseph von. Sur les origines russes. Extraits de manuscrits orientaux... adressés à Mgr. le Comte de Romanzoff, chancelier de l'Empire de Russie, dans une suite de lettres depuis l'an 1816 jusqu'à l'an 1825. St. Petersburg, Imprimerie de l'Académie impériale des Sciences, 1827. St. Petersburg, Imprimerie de l'Académie impériale des Sciences, 1827. Large 4to. VIII, 132 pp. With engr. title (dated 1825). Arabic texts at the end, following the French version. Contemp. green half roan, raised bands on spine with blind-stamped fillets.

£ 2,750.-

Unique and uncommon edition of this collection of Arabic, Persian and Turkish texts mentioning Russia and its inhabitants. Sources include the works of Idrisi, Motenebbi, Abulfeda, Ibn Khaldun, Hajji Khalifa, etc., as well as the Quran. - The Austrian scholar Joseph von Hammer-Purgstall (1774-1856) was appointed to a position at the Austrian Embassy in Constantinople in 1799. One of the most prominent orientalists of the early 19th century, he is considered the first man to have initiated a genuine study of the Ottoman world based on the principles of critical scholarship. - Occasional foxing, insignificant wear to corners and leading edges. An appealing copy, wide-margined copy.
¶ Brunet III, 33.


13th-century treatise on falconry, in the original Turkish with a German translation, with two other early falconry treatises

Hammer-Purgstall, Joseph von. Falknerklee, bestehend in drey ungedruckten Werken über die... Falknerey. Pest (now part of Budapest), Conrad Adolf Hartleben (verso of title-page: [Vienna], printed by the widow of Anton Strauß), 1840. Pest (now part of Budapest), Conrad Adolf Hartleben (verso of title-page: [Vienna], printed by the widow of Anton Strauß), 1840. Frontispiece plus [8], XXXII, [2], 115, [2], [1 blank] pp.; 48 ll. 8vo. With a lithographic frontispiece line drawing of a stone-cut falcon; the Turkish title-page with the title in a double-ogive decoration with arabesques, a braided border, flowers and 3 falcons; the opening page of the Turkish text in a border and its title in a kufic inscription in an elaborately decorated panel; and a woodcut white-on-black Turkish inscription on the back of the main (German) title-page. Set in fraktur, Arabic and Greek types with incidental roman. The main Turkish text is bound at the end of the book, with the pages progressing from right to left like a normal Arabic book, so that the book can be opened from either side.With a modern index of ornithological, zoological and botanical names of animals and plants mentioned in the Turkish treatise, citing both the page and the chapter numbers, reproduced from manuscript. Later 19th-century half tanned sheepskin, sewn on 3 recessed cords (but with 5 false bands on the spine), title in gold in the 2nd of 6 spine compartments, marbled sides, endpapers printed in a Spanish-marbled style. With the publisher's original tinted lithographed wrappers bound in (printed in black with a blue tint-block), with a falcon on the front and back, the white silhouette of a falcon inside back and a white panel for an owner's name inside front. The modern index is separately bound in modern goatskin, marbled sides, designed to match the main volume.

£ 7,500.-

First printing in any language of three important manuscripts on falcons and falconry: a 12th-century Turkish treatise on falconry by Mahmud Ibn Mehmed al-Bargini, "Baz nama" [= Falcon book] (in the original Turkish and in German translation); the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I's ca. 1515(?) "Über die Falknerey" in the original German; and a shorter Greek treatise on hawking, "Hierakosophion" [= Hawking apprenticeship] in the original Greek and in German translation, a variant form of part of a 13th-century work by the Byzantine Emperor Michael VIII (1223-1282). Little is known about the author of the Turkish treatise, but he came from Anatolia on the southeastern coast of what is now Turkey, where he apparently worked in service of the Bey of Mentese. He cites another work from 597 AH (1200/01 CE). - Hammer-Purgstall (1774-1856), a leading Austrian orientalist with an extensive knowledge of languages, took up a diplomatic position at the Austrian embassy in Constantinople in 1799 and remained in Turkey and the Middle East until 1807. He found the Turkish manuscript on falconry at the Biblioteca Ambrosiana in Milan in 1825 and the other two manuscripts at the Hofbibliothek in Vienna. He not only translated and edited the present texts but also contributed a 32-page introduction and a list of 63 works on the subject of falconry, from the 15th-century to his own day. The book, printed in only 300 copies, has been largely overlooked in the literature on ornithology and Islamitica, but Schwerdt notes that it is "particularly important to lovers of falconry, its origin and history". It also provides insights into the Turkish language and Islamic culture. Although published in what is now Budapest, it was printed in Vienna. The printing office had its own typefoundry, stocked with matrices for various non-Latin types, giving the book a special typographic interest as well. The decoration on the Turkish title-page departs from Islamic tradition by incorporating pictorial images of three falcons. The book collates: frontispiece + [pi]4 a-b8 [c]1 [= 84] 1-78 84 (-84); 2[1]8 2-68 = 128 ll., with the second series of numbered quires (containing the Turkish text) progressing from right to left. - With some modern pencil notes on the flyleaf and in the margins. Somewhat foxed throughout, as usual, but otherwise in very good condition and nearly untrimmed, preserving many deckles and point holes and with most bolts in the main Turkish text unopened. The original publisher's illustrated wrappers, rarely preserved, show a few small chips, tears and scrapes but are still in good condition. The binding is chipped at the foot of the spine and slightly worn, but still generally good. First edition (in Turkish and German) of an important 13th-century Turkish treatise on falconry, with the publisher's illustrated wrappers bound in.
¶ Harting 112; Jahrbücher der Literatur XCIX (1842), pp. 59-62; Wolfgang Menzel, in: Literaturblatt XCI (9 September 1840), pp. 361-362; Schwerdt I, p. 228; not in Anker; Atabey; Ayer; Blackmer; Nissen; Strong.


A Brief History of Time, "signed" with a thumbprint

Hawking, Stephen, physicist (1942-2018). A Brief History of Time. From the Big... Bang to Black Holes. New York, Bantam Books, 1988. New York, Bantam Books, 1988. Octavo (230 x 153mm). Text illustrations. Publisher's black quarter cloth, blue pictorial dustjacket.

£ 22,000.-

First American edition with authorial thumbprint of Hawking's bestselling science classic. A fine copy, 'signed' with an authorial thumbprint on front free endpaper. - Provenance: Judy Fella (Hawking's first secretary, and later PA and nursing coordinator: Fella worked with Hawking on the first draft of A Brief History of Time).