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19th Century and Prior Classics

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  • The Poetical Works of Chaucer – Complete 1782  [The Father of the English Language] – 14 Vols in 7 Original Period Bindings

    The Poetical Works of Chaucer – Complete 1782 [The Father of the English Language] – 14 Vols in 7 Original Period Bindings

    The very first Bell’s Edition, rare complete. Miscellaneous Pieces from Urry’s Edition of 1721; The Canterbury Tales from Tyrwhitt’s Edition of 1775. The text of each volume printed Edinburg: at The Apollo Press, by the Martins 7th September 1782; engravings John Bell British Library dated variously 1782.

    Fourteen volumes bound as seven, small 12mo, with engraved portrait and extra engraved titles to each volume. Over 3,000 pages all up. Bound in full, original mottled calf, spines with gilt bands and designs, separate red leather title labels. Boards ruled in gold, all board edges knurled in gold. A little rubbed and one tender joint, otherwise a very attractive antiquarian set.

    Volume I, 267 pages … including the “Life of the Author”. Vol II printed similarly … the Canterbury Tales … 258 pages. Vol III, 223 pages … more Tales and Prologues … Wife of Bath, Friar, Squire, Merchant etc. Vol IV, 236 pages, … Doctors and Monk’s Tale etc. Vol V, 228 pages and the Nun etc. Vol VI, 274 pages … Ploughman … the Merchant’s Second Tale etc. Vol VII, 198 pages The Romaunt of the Rose. Vol VIII, 195 pages … The Troils and Creseide, in five bokes. Vol IX, 198 pages. Vol X, 194 pages the Troils continued. Vol XI, 194 pages … the Legends … Cleopatra, Dido, Ariadne etc. Vol XII, 290 pages … the Dreams, the Cuckoo and the Nightingale. Vol XII, 177 pages … the Complaints … the Black Night, Mars and Venus, the Court of Love etc. Vol XIII, 200 pages, the House of Fame and Ballads … including “The Craft of Lovers”. Vol XIV, 244 pages see below.

    The final volume we find most useful, containing, an Account of the Works of Chaucer; Explanations of Abbreviations; Glossary and … Words and Phrases not understood.

    Rare complete originally bound set of Chaucer from the 18th Century. With assistance in the “Understanding”.

    SO SORRY SOLD

    $490.00

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  • Le Morte DArthur – The History of King Arthur and His Nobel Knights of the Round Table – Sir Thomas Malory – Illustrated with 36 coloured plates by William Russell Flint. Two Volumes Bound for Bumpas, London.

    Le Morte DArthur – The History of King Arthur and His Nobel Knights of the Round Table – Sir Thomas Malory – Illustrated with 36 coloured plates by William Russell Flint. Two Volumes Bound for Bumpas, London.

    Originally published in 1485 and first issued by the Medici Society in 1912. This is an early reprint of that issue, in two volumes, 1920 and, finely bound in full leather under the name of the legendary London bookseller Bumpas.

    Two Volumes, crown quarto, 439 and 531 pages after preliminaries in each case. Magnificent plates, 36 in total, by Russell Flint.

    The binding, full polished morocco, with raise bands and gilt lettering, and gilt fillet with inner wide dentils (a lovely touch), all page edges richly gilt. Silk ribbon markers. Some rubbing, very clean internally.

    Russell Flint’s interpretation of Malory’s work is masterful and depicts seminal moments and characters.

    Imprinted following the text of Caxton, modernised by Alfred Pollard, instructed by the Medici Society, London. Russell Flint (1880-1969) was influenced by the Pre-Raphaelite movement and, the stylised neoclassical art of the Renaissance. He attended the Edinburgh, Royal Institute of Art. He admired Arthur Rackham … and you can that in these example. His figures are finely modelled with further influences of Burne-Jones

    Le Morte DArthur – Illustrated and bound in style … a very good set

    $390.00

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  • Au Pole de Sud a Bicyclette – Emillio Salgari

    Au Pole de Sud a Bicyclette – Emillio Salgari

    The French translation of an Emilio Salagari classic translated by J. Fargeau. Salagari being the Italian equivalent of Henty and in some respects Jules Verne. Written in the Italian in the 1890’s this French version was published in 1931 a fifth edition.

    Collected because of the genre, the crazy story involving the South Pole and the superb decorative covers by Fontanez. Although, like quite a few, Fontanez should have brushed up his knowledge of natural history.

    Extra large octavo, 240 pages with illustrations in the text. Paper with an even browning as usual. The green percaline covered boards with title back and apine decorated boldly in polychrome with penguins, seals and polar bear (mmhh), with three intrepid explorer on an eight wheeled steam assisted velocipede. Top edge gilt. Good condition, bright covers.

    A classic Polar Adventure – on a tandem!

    $180.00

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  • The Memoirs of Sarah Bernhardt  – and her novel “In the Clouds” – Edited Sandy Lesberg

    The Memoirs of Sarah Bernhardt – and her novel “In the Clouds” – Edited Sandy Lesberg

    Original memoirs from early childhood through the First American Tour edited and introduced by Sandy Lesberg. Also, the first English language publication of her only novel “In the Clouds”.

    Large octavo, 256 pages of which the last 52 comprise the short novel.

    A first edition 1977 published by Peebles Press, New York and London. A very good copy.

    Nicely illustrated from period photographs, and Clouds illustrated with line drawings by Georges Clairin.

    The adventurous Bernhardt not satisfied with being the most admired actor of the 19thC took to some strange activities … riding whales, collecting exotic animals, early ballooning and, was a accomplished artist and sculptor.

    Sarah Bernhardt by Sarah Bernhardt

    $45.00

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  • French Thetrical Legend – Sarah Bernhardt – Signed Manuscript Letter 1887, Photographic Portrait and Ephemera

    French Thetrical Legend – Sarah Bernhardt – Signed Manuscript Letter 1887, Photographic Portrait and Ephemera

    Likely the 19th Century’s greatest actress Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923). A fine hand with bold signature dated 1887. Her personal grey bordered stationery with the Quand Meme motif.

    She addresses “Mon Cher Paul” mentions her pretty niece and trying to arrange a suitable time to catch up.

    The letter is accompanied by a photographic portrait of Bernhardt, a cabinet card depicting the legend in Camille by Dumas which she performed in 1882. 16cm by 11cm mounted on original card minor edge chips, plain back.

    Also relating to her tour of America (see below) two “Between the Acts & Bravo” cigarette cards, also from the 1880’s, issued by Thomas Hall, New York. 7.5cm by 4cm each, very good condition.

    1887 was an interesting time for the “Divine Sarah”. She was well established by this time but had

    developed an extremely lavish lifestyle and had a gambler for a son that she supported financially. Already accustomed to touring a mammoth tour of South and North America was organised by her manager Edouard Jarett. It was hugely successful an she returned to Paris the year of this letter with a million francs. Unfortunately, her manager died of a heart attack on the tour … it didn’t stop Sarah indulging in some of her favourite pastimes … such as collecting exotic animals. She brought back an alligator that seemingly was partial to champagne. Among her other strange activities was sleeping in a coffin when trying to get into character for rather dowdy parts.

    Sarah Bernhardt – Signed manuscript Letter – 1887 – with Cabinet Card from that period.

    $490.00

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  • Amorous Fiammetta – Boccaccio – Stunning Illustrations and  Striking Gilt Illustrated Vivid Vellum Cover – First Limited Numbered Edition 1929

    Amorous Fiammetta – Boccaccio – Stunning Illustrations and Striking Gilt Illustrated Vivid Vellum Cover – First Limited Numbered Edition 1929

    Published as a limited edition (No 118 of 550) in 1929 by the Mandrake Press, London.

    This is simply a stunning book – starting with the vivid blue/green stained limp vellum covers with yapp edges with striking gold motif of The Three Graces. Maybe the most beautiful book we have had. A feast of brightly coloured illustrations … simply stunning.

    Originally written by Giovanni Boccaccio and translated into English by Bartholomew Young in 1587.

    Edited and introduced by K.H. Josling. Illustrated by M. Leone

    Folio, after preliminaries .. Introduction of xxxviii pages; further introductions etc per original text up to xlix; 161 pages then illustrated limitation page. Quality bright gilt to all page edges.

    The beautiful Fiammetta was the beloved muse of Giovanni Boccaccio, and was almost certainly Maria d’Aquino (died 1382) a Neapolitan noblewoman. She was the illegitimate daughter of Robert the Wise, King of Naples. Her mother was Sibilia Sabran, wife of Count Thomas IV of Aquino. She was begat during King Roberts coronation festivities.

    Beautiful, will make a super gift

    $340.00

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