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Once used as a pastedown for a later folio volume, this cut down bifolium comprises two leaves (of 42) from an edition of the Doctrinale of Alexander de Villa Dei printed in Holland, possibly Utrecht, c.1463-70, by the ‘Printer of the Speculum’, the unidentified printer whose work predates the earliest named and dated Netherlandish presses of Johannes de Westfalia and Thierry Martens by several years.

In 1987, in these same rooms, this cropped bifolium made $16,500 as part of the Estelle Doheny library.

Natural history entries in the sale included a first ocatvo edition of Audubon’s Birds of America..., published in seven volumes in 1840-44, which sold at $42,000 (£28,965), and a first edition set of the Warmer, Williams & Moore Orchid Album, published in 11 volumes from 1892-97 and containing a total of 528 colour printed and hand finished litho plates by and after John Nugent Finch, one of which is reproduced here.