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English History

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  • Trial of King Charles the First – England’s Black Tribunal -1737

    Trial of King Charles the First – England’s Black Tribunal -1737

    Published by C Rivington, at the Bible and Crown in St Paul’s Church Yard (London) in 1737. Octavo, xxxi, 308 pages with adverts, index and engraved plate of Charles I as frontispiece. Bound in full contemporary leather, a bit worn but authentic antiquarian. No title label. The frontispiece is a masterpiece of stipple engraving and is often missing.

    Carries the bookplate of Victorian gentleman James Barratt of Lymm Hall a magnificent pile which appeared in Twycross’s Mansions of England. later bookplate of Charles J Bewlay of Carleton Hall, partly laid over. This combination has been seen before, also se in the partial laid over manner … Bewlay must have purchased a good slice of Barratt’s library.

    A sixth and very much enlarged edition. Set out in four parts. The longer title describes …

    I – The complete Tryal of Kind Charles the First, by the pretended High Court of Justice in Westminster-Hall, begun Jan, 20, 1648. Together with His Majesty’s Speech on the Scaffold, erected at Whitehall Gate, on Tuesday Jan. 30, 1648.

    II – The Loyal Martyrology: Or, A perfect Relation of the Sufferings and Death of the Nobility, Gentry, and others, who were inhumanly sacrific’d for their Loyalty to the Sovereigns King Charles I and II. Together with several Dying Speeches.

    III – An Historical Register of the Lords, Knights, and Gentlemen, who were slain in Defence of their King and Country, during the Unnatural Rebellion, begun in 1641.

    IV – The Loyal Confessors: In a brief Account of the most Eminent Sufferers, by Imprisonment, Banishment, or in Estate, for the Cause of His Sacred Majesty.

    To which is added An Historical Preface, by a True Churchman.

    For those unaware of the general goings on Charles I (Son of James VI of Scotland, England’s first Stuart King) thought he could rule without a Parliament and making up his own laws (read taxes) as he went along. It led to disorder, Civil War (6% of the population died) and much more. He was arrested and charged with everything in the book [interestingly his charges are an early example of being charged with murder committed by his followers]. He didn’t recognise the Court and said so often during the Trial. He was if anything very eloquent and his responses and Dying Speech are good for reading.

    Charles I – Lost is Head but not his Voice – Rare engraved frontispiece.


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  • Malory’s – Chronicles of King Arthur – 3 Volumes

    Malory’s – Chronicles of King Arthur – 3 Volumes

    Published by the Folio Society in 1982. Three volumes in original slipcase. Octavo, 292,348 and 262 pages. Blue cloth covered bindings decorated in red and gold. A super looking production.

    Introductions and explanations by experts Sue Bradbury and Kevin Crossley-Holand and nice lino-cuts by Edward Bawden.

    The Chronicles comprise … The Tale of King Arthur; Sir Tristam de Lyonesse and The Morte D’Arthur.

    The legendary tales were first put down in one place by George of Monmouth in the early thirteen century. In the fifteenth century Sir Thomas Malory produced the definitive work completed in 1470, This was at the time Caxton really got going with his printing press so Malory’s work was destined to be promoted and preserved. Naturally, the language and expression of Malory’s writing reflects the period and “modern” writers have edited the text to be readable nowadays.

    What would King Arthur think of a boxed set?


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  • Armorial Book-Plates. Their Romantic Origin and Artistic Development – Signed limited edition of 300 this number 218 by the expert of all experts Neville Barnett – published in 1932

    Armorial Book-Plates. Their Romantic Origin and Artistic Development – Signed limited edition of 300 this number 218 by the expert of all experts Neville Barnett – published in 1932

    Unusual faux snake-skin binding. Excellent condition 172 pages.

    With numerous book-plate illustrations with 17 tipped in originals from those of great fame (our favourite being that of Polar Explorer Douglas Mawson).

    Chapters on the Origins of Armory; the Age of Chivalry; the Pageant of Heraldry; the Romance of Arms; German, French and British Book-plates the latter extensive and importantly Australian and New Zealand Armorial Book-plates.

    Collectable work from the doyen of Australian Bookplates – Neville Barnett – Numbered Limited Signed edition with Mawsons bookplate.


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  • Larn Yersel’ Geordie [Learn Yourself Geordie – the Language of the North East of England] – Scott Dobson

    Larn Yersel’ Geordie [Learn Yourself Geordie – the Language of the North East of England] – Scott Dobson

    Not an expensive book but a priceless one! The “go to” reference for the language of Voyager’s birthplace.

    Scott Dobson, a well known local identity, starts by making it clear that this is a language not a dialect … almost correct we would say. Geordie’s take many of their unique words and expression from the Viking’s … and maybe one of two of their customs … e.g. “chatting up each others birds”.

    Not only will you learn some “Geordie” the book is a very funny piece .. as you would expect if you know any of the natives.

    Paperback, 32 pages, with some daft illustrations, ending in a Vocabulary of Geordie Phrases”. Used but pretty good condition. Published in Rothbury, Northumberland in 1986.

    Postage will be reduced on final billing for Australian (and Geordie) customers.

    Man Up .. Learn some Geordie today!


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  • Relics for the Curious – Two Volumes – 1824

    First Edition set near impossible to find. Printed by Samuel Burton Leadenhall Street, London in 1824.

    Two small volumes, 184 pages, 168 pages, frontispiece to both. Bound in contemporary olive half calf, spines gilt with double red leather labels. Lightly rubbed a pretty clean and bright set.

    A collection of most peculiar anecdotes. The Literary Magnet of the time praised the contents and demonstrated their approbation of them by making copious extracts available in their rag.

    Classifies as anecdotes, clerical, professional and miscellaneous and compounded by “singular customs” and “extracts from remarkable wills”.

    Very unusual books for the well read and broadly based historian … facts contained in here designed to liven any dull dinner party … “Did you know that …”

    Relics … well anecdotes really of some strange historical happenings.


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  • Le Morte d’Arthur – Sir Thomas Malory – Shakespeare Head Private Press Limited Edition 1933

    Le Morte d’Arthur – Sir Thomas Malory – Shakespeare Head Private Press Limited Edition 1933

    Full title … The Noble & Joyous Boke Entitled Le Morte d’Arthur Nothwythstondying it Treateth of the Byrth Lyf and Actes of the sayd Kynge Arthur; of his Noble Knightes of the Rounde Table. Theye Merveylous Enquestes and Adventures. Thachyevynge of the Sanc.Greall and the Ende the Delourous Deth: and Departynge out of this Worlde of Them al. Wyche Boke was Reduced in to Englysshe by the Well Dysposyd Knyghte Syr Thomas Malory.

    Two volumes, quarto, number xxx of 350 copies for sale (a further 20 copies were not for sale) with 22 woodcut illustrations. Original binding in terra cotta half Morocco over ivory buckram, flat spines with gilt titling, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt. Other edges untrimmed.

    The revered Shakespeare Head, Saint Aldates Oxford, edition of the most famous of the Arthurian tales, reprinted from and resembling in layout and typeface the 1498 edition of Wynkyn de Worde kept in the John Rylands Library, Manchester.

    Volume I comprises 4 initial blanks; half title; title with limitation on verso; prologus i-iv; table v-xxviii; Fyrste Boke to IX Boke 1-316 with woodcut in each; 3 final blanks. VolI comprises 4 initial blanks; half title; title with note to verso; Boke X – Boke XXI 1-373 with woodcuts to each and a further one in Boke XXI; notes 3; 3 final blanks. All as should be.

    Written in the 15th century by Thomas Malory the sweeping Mort d’Arthur includes the youth of Arthur, the romance of Guinevere and Lancelot, the Quest for the Grail, the tragedy of Tristan and Iseult etc.

    This superb work directly tied to the early days of printing in England, with broad margins, quality handmade paper and the impeccably reproduced typeface … all hallmarks of the Shakespeare Head Press.

    The Shakespeare Head Press was started in 1904 at Stratford Upon Avon by Arthur Bullen after he had had a dream about finely printing all of Shakespeare’s works at his birthplace, something that had not been done before. Much of his equipment and initial typeface came second had from William Morris’s Kelmscott Press. After Bullen’s death in 1927 the business was moved to Oxford under its new owners Basil Blackwell and Bernard Newdigate who was the typographer. They continued in the Morris tradition. The building in which they operated was commandeered by the American allies in 1942.

    King Arthur and his Legends and Death – Shakespeare Head Private Press edition.


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