Henry Matthew Brock’s illustration of ‘Hop O’ My Thumb’, signed at lower left and one of those he made for a 1914, Frederick Warne edition of The Book Fairy Tales – £1600 at Cheffins on October 20.

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Cautiously estimated at just £12,000-18,000, a copy of the 1663, third-folio edition of Shakespeare’s works offered as part of an October 21 sale in Cambridge sold for a rather more substantial £70,000.

A third-impression copy of 1664, it had a number of faults, notably the lack of the portrait frontispiece and a couple of text leaves – though all were supplied in facsimile – but was otherwise reckoned to be in ‘fair to good’ condition.

In a much later panelled calf binding by Bernard Middleton, it was sold by Cheffins (24.5% buyer’s premium).

Wollstonecraft highlights

Other highlights of the 450-lot auction included a 1792 first of Mary Wollstonecraft’s A Vindication of the Rights of Woman…, uncut in original boards, at £15,000, and at £4000, a copy of the 1794, first and only published part of her Historical and Moral View of the Origin and Progress of the French Revolution… at £4000.

The latter was among lots that came to auction from the library of Julians Park in Hertfordshire, the former home of Audrey Pleydell-Bouverie, the daughter of an Anglo-American lumber and steel millionaire who in 1940 had married a son of the Earl of Radnor.

Also included in the sale were a group of books printed for the collector and typographer Viscount Carlow, whose Corvinus Press had been established in 1936 by way of a hobby.

Audrey Field, as Pleydell-Bouverie then was, probably assisted Carlow financially and a number of the books were marked as having been specially printed for her.

One such was one of 15 signed copies (from an edition of 175) of James Joyce’s Storiella As She Is Syung. Bound in orange vellum with the title simply lettered in gold on the cover, it sold at £11,000.