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  • The Log from the Sea of Cortez [With a tribute – “About Ed Ricketts] – John Steinbeck.

    The Log from the Sea of Cortez [With a tribute – “About Ed Ricketts] – John Steinbeck.

    A sought after yet controversial book of non fiction by John Steinbeck. The Sea of Cortez is the Gulf of California.

    First published in the US in 1951 after a work of 1941. This is the first UK edition published by Heinemann, London in 1958. Octavo, 59 page tribute “About Ed Ricketts”, 4 page Introduction, 272 page Log followed by a Glossary and Index. With end paper maps and two full page illustrations from photographs. A very good near fine copy.

    The log details a six-week boat expedition to collect marine specimens with his close friend and marine scientist Ed Ricketts. The work ha been previously published with Ed Ricketts species catalogue … it was unsuccessful in that form. Ricketts die in an accident in 1948 and Steinbeck decided to re-publish the narrative with a special tribute to Ricketts.

    Ed Ricketts was a special person and Steinbeck’s tribute cements the view that he was he basis of a number of Steinbeck’s more likeable characters, particularly “Doc” from Cannery Row.

    The voyage is an interesting adventure and was successful from a scientific point of view … fifty or so new species were recorded among the many hundreds of specimens collected. One, a sea anemone, was named Phialoba steinbecki.

    We mentioned controversy in our opening paragraph. Whilst Steinbeck’s hand is clear in the narrative, the discovery of Ricketts personal diaries of the events indicated that the work should have been given joint authorship.

    John Steinbeck in the Californian Gulf with best friend Ed “the Doc” Ricketts

    SO SORRY SOLD

    $130.00

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  • Drums of Mer – Ion Idriess – Signed by Publisher

    Drums of Mer – Ion Idriess – Signed by Publisher

    First published by Angus and Robertson in 1933. This is the seventh edition dated 1936. Inscribed by Walter Cousins head of the publishing house as a gift to Frances van Cleef, wife of a Chicago industrialist who was a close friend of the author.

    Very good condition and in a very good example of the colourful dust jacket. Best copy we have seen of this elusive Idriess book.

    The “Drums of Mer” captures the charm of the Torres Strait Islands. As usual great images to accompany an Idriess book. A selection of chapter titles gives one a feel … When the Blood Lust calls; The Battle of the Fly; Velvet Claws; The Trouncing of Kebisu; Jakara Makes Love and The People of the Auwo Oromo. Mer (Murray Island) is sitting between Yule Entrance and Flinders Entrance closer to Papua New Guinea than Australia.

    Rare Idriess superb writing signed by publisher … super dust jacket

    $90.00

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  • Victorian Telescope – 36 inch two draw – mahogany cased – c1880

    Victorian Telescope – 36 inch two draw – mahogany cased – c1880

    This beautiful two draw telescope is English by origin and made in the Victorian era c1880.

    It is in superb condition. Fully extended it is near 36 inches – closed about 16 inches. The 1.5 inch objective is clear and has good light gathering qualities – no chips. The mahogany casing is intact which is rare as they generally split with age. The eyepiece has a pull down dust cover as is usual for the period.

    The brass objective has a dust cover fitted into a substantial extendable lens shade which slides well … all in very good condition. An instrument of this quality must have come from a leading London maker and the style suggests Dollond.

    Good optics and fine mahogany banding making a handsome early telescope

    Best one we have had for a long time!

    $590.00

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  • Letters From High Latitudes – Earl of Dufferin Governor General of India – From the Library of The Novar of Raith, Ronald Munro Ferguson, to be 6th Governor General of Australia and, who had married the daughter of Lord Dufferin, Lady Helen Hermoine in the year that Ferguson signed the inside of this book 1889.

    Letters From High Latitudes – Earl of Dufferin Governor General of India – From the Library of The Novar of Raith, Ronald Munro Ferguson, to be 6th Governor General of Australia and, who had married the daughter of Lord Dufferin, Lady Helen Hermoine in the year that Ferguson signed the inside of this book 1889.

    Being some account of a Voyage in 1856 in the Schooner Yacht “Foam” to Iceland, Jan Meyen, and Spitzbergen.

    Eighth edition published by John Murray in 1887, London, having been published a number of times since the first of 1857. New editions continued on well into the 20th Century.

    Octavo, 248 pages, with frontispiece of the “First Glimpse of Jan Mayen”, and numerous illustrations throughout. Original blude cloth covered boards with gilt device to front, gilt titles to spine. Original jet black endpapers with Ronald Munro Ferguson, Novar of Raith’s bookplate on the front paste down. Also, signed and dated by Ferguson on a blank page before the half title July 27″ 89, the year he married Duffrein’s daughter … a wedding gift from the father-in-law?

    Written as if a series of lengthy letters. Some unusual introductory content … poem “To The Figure=Head of the “Foam””; list of Dramatis Personae … Protesilaus stumbles on the threshold; the Icelander – a modern Sir Patrick Spens; Loch Goil – the Saga of Clan Campbell; through the Sounds – Stornaway; Out into the North Atlantic and gales and sea sickness – first sight of Iceland, landing at Thule; Reykjavik and buying horses … the lava plateau, mystical mountains, crossing the Arctic Circle; On to Jan Mayen and the volcanic Mount Berrenberg; Sailing for Bear Island and Cherie Island, the Freer Sea, landing at Spitzbergen, English Bay and Lady Edith’s Glacier …

    Despite the popularity of the expedition and the book of events this was the only published work of the rather busy Frederick Hamilton-Temple -Blackwood, the First Marquess of Dufferin and Ava of Northern Ireland. Dufferin (1826-1902) was variously .. 3rd Governor of Canada, Viceroy and Governor General of India, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster etc he also held senior positions in the Middle East. Born into wealth he was educated at Oxford. Late in life he became involved in a major financial scandal resulting in the loss of most of his own fortune. He was exonerated of any blame , seemingly.

    Ronald Munro Ferguson (1860-1934) was born at Kirkcaldy, Scotland. He attended Sandhurst an after a military career was elected to the House of Commons in 1884. In 1914 he was appointed Governor-General of Australia, forming a close bond with Prime Minister Billy Hughes during the difficult years of WWI. He held office until 1920, the six year term then being a record. Returned to Scotland to become 1st Viscount Novar and Secretary for Scotland. After politics he held Board and Management position in a number of Insurance and banking companies and, was knighted in 1926.

    Price $180.00

    Dufferin in the “Foam” in the cold North … unusual descriptive writing. Exceptional provenance

    $180.00

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  • The Pagan Trinity – Beatrice Irwin – First Edition 1912 – Presentation Copy to “Cheiro”

    The Pagan Trinity – Beatrice Irwin – First Edition 1912 – Presentation Copy to “Cheiro”

    An unusual book of poetry dedicated to French artist sculptor Auguste Rodin. The opening poem inspired by Rodin…” The Hand of God”

    Presentation copy inscribed boldly “To Count Louis Hamon with best regards from Beatrice Irwin Feb 15 /12” … the recipient was also known as Cheiro, a famous cheiromancer (palmist) and author of sought after works on that subject.

    A first edition published by John Lane, The Bodley Head, London in 1912. Octavo, 144 pages half vellum binding with nice marbled paper covered boards, top edge gilt. A nice copy with the super dedication.

    A volume of mystical verse reflecting the poet / actress’s interest in colour – music – poetry relationships, then very fashionable in Europe, America, and Russia through the works of Alexander Scriabin. Irwin Beatrice also know as Lady Rosslyn a spiritualist and followed of the Baha’i faith. Virginia Woolf described the style as neo-Paganism and of significance. Her theatrical career was extensive and included a season in Australia in 1907 when she played in Brewster’s Millions in Sydney and Melbourne. Her views on colour were sophisticated and well known … she influenced Australian artists in that regard including Roy de Maistre.

    The book is arranged in under the following descriptions … Plastic poems; Colour poems; Tone Poems; The Music of Japan and Songs of the Elements. We like it.

    Cheiro, or Count Hamon was born William John Warner in Ireland in 1866. He became an internationally renown clairvoyant, palmist, numerologist … anything occult. He read for so many of the famous including Mark Twain, Sarah Bernhardt, Eddison etc. To read about some of his predictions will surprise. It is no surprise however that he had a connection with the mystical Beatrice Irwin.

    Mystical poetry by the colourful Beatrice Irwin – Cheiro’s copy nicely inscribed.

    $160.00

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  • Silvester Diggles – Australian Birds – Pied Honey-eater, Slender-billed Spine-bill and the White eye-browed Spine-bill

    Silvester Diggles – Australian Birds – Pied Honey-eater, Slender-billed Spine-bill and the White eye-browed Spine-bill

    Rare original hand-coloured lithograph by Queensland naturalist Silvester Diggles. Published as part of his magnificent work “”The Ornithology of Australia” between 1866 and 1870 in twenty-one parts by Pugh of Brisbane, in a very limited edition. By the time part sixteen was published there were only 92 subscribers. The original plates were executed by Diggles and his niece, Rowena Birkett.

    The work measures 38cm by 27cm, good hand colouring pretty clean with just the odd surface mark. A really scarce item.

    Silvester Diggles (1817-1880) artist and musician born in Liverpool, England. He came to Australia in 1853 settling in Brisbane where he taught music and drawing. Diggles was a founder of the Brisbane Choral Society in 1859 and the Philharmonic Society in 1861 known as “the father of music in Brisbane”. Diggles was also a founder of the Queensland Philosophical Society and helped establish the Museum. His greatest work was The Ornithology of Australia. However it nearly sent him broke. His health deteriorated worry about finances being a factor. He died at Kangaroo Point in 1880.

    Price $240.00 unframed

    An opportunity to own a rare original bird print by Queenslander Silvester Diggles

    $240.00

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