Oct. 18: Fine Books & Manuscripts at Potter & Potter Auctions

- by Thomas C. McKinney

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Later this month on October 18th, Potter & Potter Auctions out of Chicago will be hosting a 639 lot sale of Fine Books & Manuscripts. The sale is diverse, with the print and PDF catalogues broken into sections including 20th century literature, Asian books and prints, militaria, sports & entertainment, and gambling, crime & western Americana.

 

Estimates for the sale are reasonable, with the highest estimated item being Charles Etienne Briseux’s L’Art de Batir des Maisons de Campagne, a work on French Rococo architecture, interiors, and decoration. The copy being auctioned is a 1743 first edition and possesses a distinguished provenance—it was once part of the library of Henri François d’Aguesseau, the Chancellor of France (1717-1750) described by Voltaire as “the most learned magistrate France ever possessed.” As lot 211 it is estimated $6,000 to $8,000.

 

Predating Briseux’s work is Francesco Lana Terzi’s Magisterium naturae, et artis. Opus physico-mathematicum in three volumes from 1684/1692. This is a significant encyclopedic work of the physical sciences and natural philosophies, and its value is heightened by the presence of the third volume. The set is estimated $4,000 to $6,000 as lot 230.

 

Several lots under the umbrella term of Americana stand out. William James, widely considered the founder of modern American psychology, is here as lot 154: a first edition, first state of The Principles of Psychology in two volumes. A three-page autograph letter signed from James is tipped in. The two-volume set and ALS are estimated $3,000 to $5,000. Later on the in the sale, lot 236, Roland Clark’s Etchings, includes seventy folio illustrations, but its selling points are that this copy is number 29 of 50 signed De Luxe edition printings and it includes two original signed etchings “Bluebird Weather” and “The Morning Flight.” It is estimated $3,500 to $4,500. And lastly, an original illustration (comic story board, ink over graphite on paper) for Mad Magazine Issue No. 2 (the final page of an 8-page story entitled “Hex) by Jack Davis (story by Harvey Kurtzman) is an interesting work from an American classic. $2,500 to $3,500 is the estimate.

 

Potter & Potter Auctions’ sale of Fine Books & Manuscripts is set to take place on Friday, October 18, 2019, at 10AM Central time in Chicago. The online catalogue offers easy to use categories for lot filtering, making it significantly easier to maneuver through 600+ items. The entire catalogue is available here.