The ‘Life, Trial, and Execution of T.Cooper…’, a broadside sold by Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood for £1000.

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Part of a Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood (23% buyer’s premium) sale of March 12, and illustrated with two woodcuts, it was catalogued as an early 19th century item.

Closer inspection of the image of that broadside reveals that at its head an added autograph note more precisely and correctly dates the execution of Cooper to July 4, 1842.

Mayne attraction

A copy of John Mayne’s Tables for the use of the Excise Office…, a small octavo volume of 1678 that also incorporates an …introduction to Decimal Arithmetick, was also sold at £1000.

Copies of a couple of Mayne’s other practical business guides to merchants appear in the few published auction records of his works, but not this one.

Figures photographed

The day’s highest bid, at £3100, was reserved for a lot whose principal attraction was a pair of finely bound photograph albums compiled in the mid-19th century by a Miss Harrington, the daughter of a chancellor and sub dean of Exeter Cathedral.

Royalty, writers and other distinguished figures of the age, American presidents among them, are all to be found on the carte de visite images that fill its pages.

Sold at £750 was a vellum-bound, black-letter English medical text that was very honestly described as being a “woefully incomplete” compilation of early English herbal recipes, but probably ‘Here beginneth a good book of Medecines Called the Treasure of Pore Men’.

Originally published in 1565, that complete work is today readily available in modern reprint form to fill in those gaps.


Original illustration by Edward Ardizzone for an edition of Trollope’s 'Framley Parsonage' – £780 at Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood.

A composite image that formed a striking rear cover to the Exeter catalogue showed some of the many works illustrated by Edward Ardizzone that featured in the sale, but not the two most expensive ones.

Signed ‘Diz’ and dated 1959, an ink sketch by Ardizzone for an edition of Framley Parsonage, a novel that Anthony Trollope himself regarded as one of his less accomplished works, dubbing it a “hodg-podge”, made £780, while ‘The Colonel and his Son Pay a Morning Call’, a drawing of 1954, reached £480.