Wednesday - 23 July 2014

Heath Robinson’s asbestos fun

16 June 2004Written by ATG Reporter

IN a May 18 sale held by Tennants of Leyburn, a copy of the 1902, first trade edition of The Tale of Peter Rabbit, bearing a neat inscription that was added 90 years later, was lotted with a copy of Jack and the Beanstalk in English hexameters by Hallam Tennyson and illustrated by Randolph Caldecott [1886?] and sold for £1000.

Also worth a mention, one of 100 signed copies of William Russell Flint's illustrated version of Matthew Arnold's The Scholar Gypsy & Thyris of 1910, which made £220, and a job lot of a dozen 'BB' [Denys Watkins-Pitchford] titles, mostly later works but including The Wayfaring Tree of 1945, which sold at £450.

Showing some offsetting and foxing but generally clean in a contemporary binding, a 1789 [first?] edition of The Voyage of Governor Phillip to Botany Bay... was the pick of the travel books and sold at £1500, while a 1775 first of Richard Chandler's Travels in Asia Minor, or an Account of a Tour made at the expense of the Society of Dilettanti, in a full contemporary leather binding and bearing the signature and bookplate of the first owner, J. Harrison, reached £420.

A job lot of 19th and 20th century books and pamphlets of Isle of Man interest, some 75 in all, was sold for £1200.

Bird books on offer included a basic, three vol. Greene Parrots in Captivity of 1884, in recent bindings and with some of the 81 colour plates loose and frayed, at £750; a handsomely bound, seven vol. set of Meyer's Coloured Illustrations of British Birds and their Eggs of 1857 which reached £780, and a Morris History of British Birds, the six vols. of 1851-57 in a green half morocco by Birdsall, at £600.

The traditional pairing of the Humphreys & Westwood studies of British Butterflies... and ...Moths, 1841-45, saw a bid of £650.

A two vol. Nonesuch edition of The Writings of Gilbert White of Selborne, 1938, was rather curiously lotted up with a 1930 book on watercolour painting and valued at just £30-50, but the edition of White's writings edited by Hugh Massingham, designed by Francis Meynell and illustrated with woodcuts by Eric Ravilious, is of course worth rather more than that and this copy sold at £420.

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Written by

ATG Reporter

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