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Curiosities

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  • The Convict King (Jorgen Jorgenson) – James Francis Hogan – Rare Walch of Hobart issue 1891.

    The Convict King (Jorgen Jorgenson) – James Francis Hogan – Rare Walch of Hobart issue 1891.

    Rather scarce and no wonder given the paper wrappers. The long title worth detailing

    The Convict King being The Romantic Life and Adventures of Jorgen Jorgenson who was for a time Monarch of Iceland, helped to Discover Bass Strait, was at the Founding of Hobart etc etc. and Closed His Extraordinary Career in the Hobart Hospital in 1845.

    Published by J Walch & Sons, Tasmania. No date but 1891. Authority Ferguson 104889.

    Interestingly for a book published by the famous Hobart printing firm – this book was actually printed by Kelly of London and Kingston on Thames, England.

    Octavo, 235 pages, with advertisements for other contemporary Walch publications in the ends and on the back cover. Splitting a bit down the spine edge, now repaired and secured with acid free archival Japan paper.

    Published as part of Walch’s Series of Books on Old Van Diemen’s Land – No 3. A very good copy despite any deficiencies given its rarity and obvious vulnerability.

    The story of Jorgen Jorgenson is a full and strange one – at first hid life appears surely a fiction … but no this man was out for adventure and mixed with many who were making their own mark on the World and its History.

    The Convict King a scarce edition for sure.

    $180.00

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  • Ships Figureheads – Complete Set of John Player’s Cards – 1931

    Ships Figureheads – Complete Set of John Player’s Cards – 1931

    A complete set of 25 vibrantly coloured cigarette cards used to promote John Player’s cigarettes – issued in 1931.

    The first time we have had this set and already our favourite. A maritime delight. Each card has an interesting narrative on the back … a wee bit better and more informative than other sets we believe.

    In protective sleeve as shown .. the odd insignificant mark – a really good set.

    Naval vessels include … Princess Royal, Queen Charlotte, Colossus, Seahorse, Bellerophon (We prefer “Billy Ruffian”), Royal Sovereign, Black Prince, Victory (hurray), Terra Nova, Formidable etc etc.

    We have seen this set mounted for display. One of the few that can still get away with that treatment in the “modern home”!

    Complete set and a nautical delight

    $120.00

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  • 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

    $120.00

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  • Letter from (Sir) Francis Chichester – 1931

    Letter from (Sir) Francis Chichester – 1931

    What at first seems a rather innocuous letter from Francis (later Sir Francis) Chichester on proper investigation is rather interesting.

    Long before Chichester became the solo around the world yachtsman, we all know him for he was a pioneering aviator. He learned to fly in 1929 and bought a de Havilland Gypsy Moth (hence the later name of his famous yacht). He attempted to beat Bert Hinkler’s record England to Australia, but the plane malfunctioned. Being a “born to win” sort of man he decided on the first Trans Tasman flight NZ to Australia which he accomplished in 1931. During which he was the first to land an aeroplane at Lord Howe Island and Norfolk Island.

    Back to the letter and we see that he was staying at The Australia Hotel Sydney and that the letter is prepared dated 193x. We are confident that this places Chichester in his hotel digs just after the historic event. The addressee Mr Crome is undoubtedly Ernest Alfred Crome who was or certainly became, along with his wife, the greatest collector of aviator memorabilia in Australia. Whilst the items sent by Chichester are a little difficult to understand they are likely conjured up ephemera that relate to that great aviation event.

    Crome gave his massive collection to the Sydney Museum and worked there for five of his final years helping them assimilate and augment the collection.

    Brief but poignant letter from a great aviator to a great aviation admirer – Chichester to Australian Ernest Crome

    $60.00

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  • Little Ragged Blossom  and more about Snugglepot and Cuddlepie – May Gibbs – First Edition c 1920

    Little Ragged Blossom and more about Snugglepot and Cuddlepie – May Gibbs – First Edition c 1920

    Published Sydney: Angus Robertson no date but 1920 and a First Edition.

    Quarto. Cloth backed pictorial boards with a colour vignette of Little Ragged Blossom pasted on with some wear. The odd mark – on the whole a very good copy.

    The wonderful fantasy world of the gum-nut babies portrayed in glorious detail. Illustrated by Gibbs with two full colour plates and twenty wonderful sepia plates as well as pictorial end papers and many line illustrations in-text. Scarce in any condition. Reference the authority Muir 2752.

    Little Ragged Blossom a May Gibbs Delight

    $240.00

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  • The Theory of Atomic Collisions – Mott and Massey (Professor Westfold’s Copy) – First edition 1933

    The Theory of Atomic Collisions – Mott and Massey (Professor Westfold’s Copy) – First edition 1933

    A first UK edition, published at Oxford by the Clarendon Press in 1933. The standard full text of the period.

    Large octavo, 282 pages. Original black cloth covered boards with gilt titles to spine. Dust jacket rather drab and aged but unusually present. The signature of K. C. Westfold and dated October 44 on the front free end paper.

    Comprehensive high level text starting with The Wave Equation then Scattering – by a Centre Force, by a Coulomb Field. The Spin of the Electron. Collisions. Inhomogenous Differential Equations. General Theory of Atomic Collisions. Born’s Approximation. Scattering of Slow Electrons. Inelastic Collisions. Electrons and Molecules. Massive Particles. Transition Probability. Relativistic Treatment of the Two Body Problem …. Nuclear Problems.

    The excellent index is a read itself of the who was who in higher mathematics including a notable relative of Voyager!

    K.C. Westfold (1921-2001) a brilliant Australian mathematical brain was Professor of Applied Mathematic at Monash and at various time Dean of Science, Professor of astronomy and Vice Chancellor of the University. He was an Archibald Prize sitter.

    Cornerstone book of the period in this supreme area of mathematical physics – nice relevant previous ownership.

    $65.00

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