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  • Was Jane Austen Happy in Bath? – Nigel Nicolson

    Was Jane Austen Happy in Bath? – Nigel Nicolson

    Jane Austen lived at No 4 Sydney Place, Bath with her parents between 1801 and 1806. Many authorities suggest Austen was much more at home in the country .. and in fact did not like urban living.

    Nigel Nicolson explores the evidence that suggest the contrary regarding her time at Bath. This work relates to a lecture given by Nicolson at the Holburne Museum of Art on 27th June 2002. And published by the Museum.

    Octavo, card cover with separate wrapping jacket, 23 pages plus (oddly named) a page of “footnotes at the end. A nice little production I fine condition.

    Nigel Nicolson (1917-2004) was the son of Sir Harold Nicolson and Vita Sackville West. He was a prolific writer and publisher … including works on Austen, Virginia Woolf and his mother of whom he wrote openly about her bisexuality which in the day caused a bit of a surprise.

    A special one for the Jane Austen fans by a distinguished authority.


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  • The Old Man Young Again or Age-Rejuvenescence in the Power of Concuspiscence … Literally Translated from the Arabic by an English “Bohemian” – Kitab Ruju’a as-Shaykh ila Sabah Fi-l-Kuwwat ‘ala-l-Bah

    The Old Man Young Again or Age-Rejuvenescence in the Power of Concuspiscence … Literally Translated from the Arabic by an English “Bohemian” – Kitab Ruju’a as-Shaykh ila Sabah Fi-l-Kuwwat ‘ala-l-Bah

    Published Montamartre, Paris by Charles Carrington 1898. Publisher of many things naughty in the naughty 1890’s. The work described as … privately printed for a small number of Amateurs and Bibliophiles, is strictly limited to Five Hundred numbered copies on Papier de Hollande. The present copy is No 437.

    Large octavo, 265 pages, top edge gilt, rich maroon endpapers, black cloth covered boards, bevelled and decorated in gilt. Decoration above Chapter headings and some romantic, not crude, illustrations.

    A slightly strangely constructed book in three parts. The First deals with the age and authorship of the Book, Arabian Medical Science; the Strength of Male Copulation and the various kinds of Impotence and Degrees of Virility and the Power of Erection etc. The Second the formation of the yard and testicles; evils from over-indulgence; ill effect of excessive coition and things to take; the advantages (many) of copulation … medicines, oils etc to improve various matters. The Third the Romance of the Genital Instinct; Aphrodisiacs and then some unmentionables.

    For those of suitable age that may be shocked the dedications is worthy … Inscribed to the Memory of the late Sir Richard F. Burton, whose works suggested, and whose labours aided me in my task of making this English version of a work, which, whatever may be thought of it today, was not deemed obscene by the people in whose generation it appeared.

    Rare Privately Printed 1898 – How to Make an Old Man Young Again!


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  • Australian Antarctic Bibliography – Knight 1987

    Australian Antarctic Bibliography – Knight 1987

    A first edition of Russell Knight’s comprehensive catalogue of all publications Australian Antarctic. Issued by the Institute of Antarctic and Southern Ocean Studies, University of Tasmania.

    We say comprehensive and that is understating the effort. Published in large landscape spiral bound form 463 pages after Preface and organisational descriptions. Very good condition.

    Contains information relating to the Australian Antarctic Territory, the sub-Antarctic islands, Heard, Macquarie and McDonald and the waters in proximity.

    The major criterion for inclusion is that parent material is relevant to thee areas about which Australia is especially concerned. Consequently, other nations efforts in the geographical region are included.

    The organisation of information assists greatly … references are organised in two dimensions … first by subject matter … Atmospheric Physics; Bases and Logistics; Biological Sciences; Terrestrial sciences; Oceanology; Medical Sciences and Socio-Economic … and then by geography … the Territory, Heard Island etc.

    We can find no update and the document appears very hard to get. This example came from the personal library of French Polar Scientist Patrick Arnaud although does not contain his mark.

    Go to reference re Australian Antarctic Interest.


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  • Australian Rare Books 1788-1900 – Jonathan Wantrup.

    Australian Rare Books 1788-1900 – Jonathan Wantrup.

    Published by Hordern House a first edition in 1987. Five years work by Wantrup.

    Thick royal octavo, 468 pages with occasional illustrations and tipped in coloured frontispiece of Sturt leaving Adelaide. Occasional foxing and priced accordingly.

    A first edition of Jonathan Wantrup’s book which was predicted to become and has become an essential reference for those collecting Australian Rare books. More than that it is a great potted … to read this book from cover to cover is an education in itself … it should be on the curriculum.

    Unlike the rather unwieldy and at time questionable Ferguson bibliography this book provides an excellent reference to the nuances and issues of edition and the like which makes book collecting that much more rewarding. Who would not seek out the Burke & Wills with the “garish” endpapers … “No such copy should be passed by” says the author.

    “Wantrup” matured to be an essential reference and a solid read in its own right.


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  • A Book Collector’s Notes – Rodney Davidson

    A Book Collector’s Notes – Rodney Davidson

    A first edition published in 1970 by Cassell Australia. Large octavo, 138 pages nicely illustrated.

    Longer title … A Book Collector’s Notes – on items relating to the Discovery of Australia The First Settlement and the Early Coastal Exploration of the Continent.

    When written Rodney Davidson had been collecting for twenty-two years. By our reckoning he did very well in that time … and when his collection was finally finished, we all know it could not possibly be trumped.

    The chapter headings are worth listing 1 – A General Background to Collecting Australiana; 2 – Terra Australis Incognita Pre-Cook Voyages: factual and Fictitious; 3 – Captain James Cook, The recorded European Discovery of the Elusive Eastern Coast; 4 – The Foundation of a Nation The First Fleet and the First Settlement; 5 – Early French Voyages to Australia; 6 – Early Coastal Voyages … followed by a very useful Bibliography.

    Respect Rodney Davidson one of the great Australian book collectors of all time – likely means all time – writes well and very informative.

    A special persons view


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  • Charlotte Barton: Australia’s First Children’s Author – Marcie Muir

    Charlotte Barton: Australia’s First Children’s Author – Marcie Muir

    A nice piece of work by Marcie Muir, font of all knowledge regarding Australian Children’s Books.

    A 35-page octavo card covered pamphlet published by Wentworth Books, 1980. A limited edition of 500 copies this one not numbered or signed so we are not sure if that is correct. A very nice copy.

    It was originally thought, an recorded by Ferguson, that the author of the first Australian children’s book “A Mother’s Offering to her Children” published Sydney 1841 was Lady Gordan Bremer. This work by Marcie proves beyond doubt that it was in fact Charlotte Barton. Drawing on a number of sources including Mrs Mins and Mrs Fanning both who wrote to Marcie the author pieces together the evidence and presents it in a very readable, entertaining and informative way. We like it!

    Charlotte Barton proven as first Australian children’s author.

    Postage will be reduced to cost appropriately on this light weight item.


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