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19th Century and Prior Classics

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  • Oracles of Nostradamus – Edited by Charles Ward

    Oracles of Nostradamus – Edited by Charles Ward

    Published by The Modern Library in 1940. The original now scarce work was published in the 1890′s. Octavo, 366 pages including index. Apart from some creasing top of dust jacket a very good copy.

    Interesting – when you consider this edition published in 1940 – see front cover for reference to Hitler – have you had enough Nostradamus?

    Prediction, prediction, prediction ..


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  • Fine Carte de Visite – Adventure Author and Secretary to the Marine Society – Samuel Whitchurch Sadler – William Trindall Pembroke Dock. 1860’s.

    Fine Carte de Visite – Adventure Author and Secretary to the Marine Society – Samuel Whitchurch Sadler – William Trindall Pembroke Dock. 1860’s.

    Samuel Whitchurch Sadler was a prolific writer of maritime adventure stories of the period. Quite a number involved slave ships … The African Cruiser; Slavers and Cruisers; The Good Ship Barbara; The Flag Lieutenant and our favourite The Ship of Ice. The Marine Society is the World’s oldest Maritime Charity. Formed in 1756 at the Kings Arms Tavern, Cornhill London. The objective of the charity … to train and improve the lot of young men, often orphans, and train then up, cloth them etc so they had more chance of survival in the Navy.

    The photographer was William Trindall, an Oxford born “photographic artist” who was operating out of premises in the Docks at Pembroke from 1868. A previous owner has written 1864 on the reverse … this might be a tad early.

    A very good image in fine condition.

    Distinguished Marine Identity and prolific story teller


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  • Eight Bells – A Tale of the Sea and the Cannibals of New Guinea – Hume Nisbet – 1889

    Eight Bells – A Tale of the Sea and the Cannibals of New Guinea – Hume Nisbet – 1889

    A tale that includes much Australian content, in particular, Moreton Bay … Brisbane .. Ipswich and the Reef.

    Scarce first edition, octavo 334 pages, published by Ward and Downey, London. Original thick pictorial boards, re-cased with new endpapers, quite clean inside. Some age marks to the front board, otherwise a good tight copy.

    James Hume Nisbet (1849-1923) was a Scottish born author and artist. He first went to Melbourne at 16 and worked in the theatre before traveling the East Coast, New Zealand and the Pacific. He returned to Scotland in 1873. In 1886 he was commissioned by Cassell’s to visit Australia and New Guinea and contributed to their “Picturesque Australasia” and wrote this book based on his experiences.

    After various introduction the story gets going on the vessel “Flying Fox” with a mutiny … and arrival at Moreton Bay … interesting references to a lady who appears to plot the death of her husband after taking a lover (perhaps a true story) … various references to the gold fields and the consequences of bad luck. Off up to New Guinea taking in the Barrier Reef. More mutinous difficulties approaching New Guinea … a drift into a very nice early history of the European encounters with Papua.

    Super scarce 19th Century adventure in Australia and New Guinea.


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  • The Decameron of Giovanni Boccaccio

    The Decameron of Giovanni Boccaccio

    The complete unabridged Modern Library edition. Published in 1951 (by reference to the number of book on the list back of dust jacket). Thick octavo, 630 pages. With a forward by Morris Ernst dated 1930 regarding the difficult time the book had had in America because of draconian obscenity laws. Well here it is unadulterated.

    Translated by John Payne, which must have been a lengthy task and one well done. It has stood the test of centuries and was a source of inspiration for Chaucer, Shakespeare and Keats.

    Good condition albeit with two previous owners names on the end papers and later date stamp on half title. Light chips to dust jacket and a hint of fading, now protected in Brodart.

    A lusty bawdy delight by Boccaccio translated by Payne


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  • Utopias and Imaginary Voyages to Australasia – John Dunmore

    Utopias and Imaginary Voyages to Australasia – John Dunmore

    Who else could be more qualified to write and present on this subject at the National Library of Australia than John Dunmore?

    Octavo, card cover of 23 delicious pages, the text of Dunmore’s lecture of 2nd September 1987, published by the N.L.A. the following year. A fine copy.

    From Joseph Hall’s “Mundas Alter et Idem’ the first utopian account to be set in the Antipodes, with mentions of La Perouse and “Fragmens” … Aldous Huxley is a bit of a drift … then back to Utopian reality and the Adventures of Alexander Venderchurch and many more esoteric accounts before back to the likes of Gulliver and that endearing Swiss Family.

    A special lecture by Dunmore on down under Utopia – wish I had been there.


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  • A Bibliography of the Writings of Jonathan Swift – Herman Teerink.

    A Bibliography of the Writings of Jonathan Swift – Herman Teerink.

    A second revised and corrected edition of Dr Teerink’s fundamental reference on Swift.

    Published by the University od Pennsylvania Press in 1963. Published in Britain by the Oxford University. First published in 1937, Teerink had continued to compile new discoveries and corrections since that date. He died in 1961 so it was down to Editor Arthur Scouten to produce this update from Teerink’s notes.

    Large, thick octavo, 453 pages with frontispiece of Captain Lemuel Gulliver. A very good copy.

    The preface by Thomas Yoseloff, Director of the Press reflects on the decision to publish the revision and the difficultly in understanding Terrink’s handwriting. Probably in the history of bibliography there has not been more challenge than in this work on Swift, mainly because of the nature of the publishing trade in the first half of the 18thC and the many potential attributions not under the authors real name or published anonymously.

    A monumental work. One might say … what interest a Swift bibliography unless the completely immersed. Well, really it give one a thorough education of the publication of the book in the era … the challenges .. unsold runs of earlier copies and how they can be used in bolstering re-issues of complete works etc. the printing houses and the quality of editorial and review before press.

    The structure of book is helpful … Table of Symbols and abbreviations. Table of Location of Teerink Numbers and then the body … Collected Works; Smaller Collections; A Tale of the Tub; Gulliver’s Travels; Separate Works; Doubtful (well some would challenge other and put some of these in the mix); Biography and Criticism, 1709-1895. And a useful index.

    Jonathan Swift – more than Gulliver and “the Tub” a lifetime work by Teerink.


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