products in your shopping cart
Total:   $0.00 details
There are no products in your shopping cart!
We hope it's not for long.

Visit the shop

19th Century and Prior Classics

list view
  1. Pages: 1 2 3 4Next >Last »
  • Rider Haggard – His Life and Works – Morton Cohen

    Rider Haggard – His Life and Works – Morton Cohen

    A first edition published by Hutchinson, London in 1960. A special and first, perhaps only, in depth biography on the great Rider Haggard – author of 45 adventure books from “She” to “King Solomon’s Mines”.

    Octavo, 327 pages, a scrape and nick to an otherwise good dust jacket, gift inscription on free end paper, slight splosh on the top, really a good copy of this hard to find book. Illustrated nicely from early photographs.

    Unsurprisingly a friend of Kipling, as well as an obvious penchant for writing in the true adventure style Rider Haggard was a reformer in many ways. Early on he spent quite some time in Africa which seeded his genre. Then back in England he took up farming and introduced many new practices to the activity. He became famous though his works and his work and as a result was called into Public life.

    A well written and extensively researched biography lacking of “the fill” seen in many others.

    Rider Haggard from whom stems Indiana Jones and all of those types … we can only dream.


    Loading Updating cart…
  • Nugae Canorae Medicae – Sir Andrew Douglas Maclagan – First edition 1850 – With Additional Contemporary Manuscript Content

    Nugae Canorae Medicae – Sir Andrew Douglas Maclagan – First edition 1850 – With Additional Contemporary Manuscript Content

    Translates literally “Silly Medical Songs” and they are. Andrew Douglas Maclagan (1812-1900) was an eminent Scottish surgeon and toxicologist. In his lifetime he was President of five of the mots distinguished Societies in Scotland. As a toxicologist he was called to Court to give evidence … as a young man he supported the prosecution in the Burke and Hare affair.

    Printed by Thomas Constable, Edinburgh in 1850 – a first edition (it was reprinted in 1873). Effectively self published. Maclagan vaguely covered his identity as the author is names as “The Poet Laureate of the New Town Dispensary”. Octavo, bark brown embossed cloth covered boards with gilt titling to front, 82 pages with manuscript additions to rear end paper. Remnant seal to back paste down.

    Given the period any reader will be pleasantly surprised how amusing the said poem/songs are … and much fun must have been had with them. Footnotes have been provided which explain the circumstances and sometimes individuals at fault or lampooned. No punches held.

    What makes this copy more charming is the manuscript addition. Internally they sometimes correct the events suggested. At the rear we have in neat manuscript further ditties by Maclagan that are not in the published work. Clearly someone who knew the great man very well. 19thC press clipping re Maclagan affixed front free end.

    Silly Songs by a most distinguished physician.


    Loading Updating cart…
  • The Picture of Kebes the Theban – Rendered into English by Hugh E Seebohm – Rare Private Printing Essex House Press [Following Kelmscott] 1906

    The Picture of Kebes the Theban – Rendered into English by Hugh E Seebohm – Rare Private Printing Essex House Press [Following Kelmscott] 1906

    A scarce little delight of a book by the intellectual banker Hugh Exton Seebohm (1867-1946). Seebohm’s father was expert in classical matters and his family followed in his footsteps as well as increasing significantly the value of the family pile. Small squarish octavo, 52 pages, title page printed in red and black, three page note at end printed in red. Olive grey papered boards with separate paper title to front and spine. A very good copy.

    Seebohm also issued a book on the Structure of Greek Tribal Society.

    The original of this work known as the “Tabula Cebetis”, an influential antique dialogue which addresses questions relating to the way of life.

    A translation of the only existing book of Kebes, who was a disciple of Philolaus and a friend of Socrates.

    Essex House was founded by Charles Ashbee in 1898 using printing gear from the then closed Kelmscott Press of William Morris. True Arts & Crafts style .. Ashbee regarded as a founder of the movement with his Guild. Great care was taken with the typographical design and the wild carnation motif which represented Essex House Press at the rear.

    Would make a delightful gift for the thoughtful.

    Essex House Printing of Seebohm’s translation of Kebes … a true book lovers delight.


    Loading Updating cart…
  • The Awakening of the Soul – Ibn Tufail – from the translation of Paul Bronnle -1907

    The Awakening of the Soul – Ibn Tufail – from the translation of Paul Bronnle -1907

    A scarce translation of Hayy ibn Yaqzan a 12th Century work by Moorish philosopher Ibn Tufail. The first philosophical novel ever written.

    Small octavo, 87 pages, missing blank free end paper, clean inside, good green cloth covered boards with title and design to front, titles similarly on spine. Very scarce.

    Published by the Orient Press, London as part of the Wisdom of the East Series. We believe this publisher was part of the John Murray enterprise.

    The work not only had an influence or later Arabic work but also, over time, a significant influence in Europe, especially during the period of European Enlightenment.

    An allegorical novel which recounts the story of a feral child who is brought up by a gazelle alone in the desert. Without any human contact the child discovers ultimate truth through a process of reasoned enquiry. The child, Hayy, meets a castaway Absal through whom he understands the human desires for material goods … Hayy concludes that such things are distractions and should be abandoned to maintain ultimate truth.

    As an aside the author had a varied career including physician to the Almohad King and was a supporter of dissection and autopsy .. expressed in the novel.

    Small but powerful first philosophical novel – scarce in this form.


    Loading Updating cart…
  • Tales From the Decameron of Giovanni Boccaccio [Beautifully Illustrated] – Private Printing 1937

    Tales From the Decameron of Giovanni Boccaccio [Beautifully Illustrated] – Private Printing 1937

    Private Printed in, London 1937. A rare edition. Text based on an anonymous translation of 1741 revised by S.W. Orson in 1898. The striking illustrations are printed from linocuts by Edmondo Lucchesi, and we are told the typeface is 16-point Poliphilus.

    Demo-folio, quarter red cloth backed decorated red/pink paper covered boards with paper title to front. 89 pages numerous woodcuts. Some ageing near the ends, still a better than good copy of a favourite illustrated book.

    Boccaccio’s tales amusing, moral suggestions, and the odd amoral act. The long introductory title to each gives a flavour e.g.

    “Masse da Lamorecchio, pretending to be dumb, is appointed gardener at a nunnery, and is favourably received by the inmates”, and

    “Pernella puts her gallant into a tub on her husband’s coming home, which tub the husband had sold; she consequently tells him that she had also sold it to a person who was then in it to see if it were sound; upon this the man jumps out and makes the husband and makes the husband clean it for him”.

    Boccaccio with the titillating woodcuts of Edmondo Lucchesi


    Loading Updating cart…
  • The Mutineer – A Romance of Pitcairn Island – Louis Becke and Walter Jeffrey – First Colonial (Australian) Edition 1898.

    Likely technically the first edition is the London issue of that year. The first and this issue the first Colonial issue by Angus & Robertson both extremely scarce.

    Octavo, 298 pages plus Publishers catalogue. Original dark green cloth covered binding, gilt title to spine. The odd mark to the boards, missing front free end paper and occasional light ageing. Otherwise really not bad and, try to find another one.

    George Lewis Becke (1855-1913) was born at Port Macquarie and must be regarded as the best Australian author of the period in the genre adventure … South Seas … historical based fiction. He has been compared with Robert Louis Stevenson, Melville, Kipling, Conrad etc exalted company indeed.

    Becke had the pedigree – from an early age he escaped to the South Pacific … ferried vessels to Bully Hayes, was tried (and acquitted) as a pirate at Brisbane at the age of 19 etc etc.

    Prolific writer once he settled down. This Bounty Mutiny based story one of the later works and a collaboration. Didn’t get into print in the USA as a relationship between different races didn’t fit the then standards.

    With a novel we at Voyager always like a good short helpful first sentence. We have the first paragraph here just to get you into the mood.

    “It was night at Tahiti, in the Society Islands. The trade-wind had died away, and a bright flood of shimmering moonlight poured down upon the slumbering waters of a little harbour a few miles distant from Matavia Bay, and the white curve of beach that fringed the darkened line of palms shone and glistened like a belt of ivory under the effulgence of its rays. For nearly half a mile the broad sweep of dazzling sand showed no interruption nor break upon its surface save at one spot; there it ran out into a long narrow point, on which, under a small cluster of graceful cocos, growing almost at the water’s edge, a canoe was drawn up”.

    Louis Becke’s scarce and somewhat controversial South Seas story.


    Loading Updating cart…
  1. Pages: 1 2 3 4Next >Last »

Product Categories