Rare Book Monthly

Articles - May - 2024 Issue

Doyle Auctions: Rare Books, Autographs & Maps May 1st!

Quality and well described complexity

Doyle will hold an auction of Rare Books, Autographs & Maps on Wednesday, May 1, 2024 at 10am. The sale offers a broad range of material ranging from the 12th to 20th centuries. The first thirty-five lots comprise a diverse group of early printed books, English and Continental, with a number of items of Shakespearian interest (lots 3-6) in the first category, and a fine copy of Van Dyke’s Icones (lot 24), an exceptional collection of portraits of artists, patrons and collectors, heading the Continental portion. Following this,  lots 35-46 are an exceptionally interesting selection of text and illuminated manuscripts. This group includes the Prayer Book of Jehan Bernachier, a 15th century manuscript with extensive illumination (lot 38), as well as a 15th century vernacular breviary in Middle Dutch, likely written at a Delft convent, with elaborate penwork initials (lot 42) and a 14th century Rules of St. Augustine from an English priory near the Welsh border (lot 44). Succeeding this are bound sets and individual fine bindings, lots 47-61. These are highlighted by a remarkable extra-illustrated set of Shakespeare from the library of Irving Berlin (lot 57), and a set of the classic Art deco fashion periodical, the Journal des Dames et des Modes (lot 61).


Following this comes a change of theme; lots 62-106 are all focused on natural history. These include the ornithological library of Ken Harte.  There are many important color plate books here, including those by Audubon (lots 64-66), Dresser (lots 78-80), Elliot (lot 81) etc. This section also has some interesting travel, including Henderson and Hume’s Lahore to Yarkand;  the succeeding work from the second mission (lot 105); Pollen and Van Dam’s travels to Madagascar (lot 93) etc. From there the sale moves on to maps and travel (lots 107-139). These incorporate Bouchette’s great wall map of Lower Canada (136) and other maps of American appeal. Lot 108 is a significant unpublished manuscript account of South America travels in 1759-1764, written by a French traveler.


Private press and book arts are the next section, lots 140-152, and these include the Cranach Press Hamlet (lot 143) and some interesting Rockwell Kent volumes (lots 148-151). Then comes literature and children’s books, lots 153-219, with A.A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh books, both in signed and unsigned state (lots 194-198), an inscribed work by the elusive Thomas Pynchon (lot 200), a Tolkien calligraphic quotation (lot 210) and much else of appeal.


Americana comprises lots 220-227, which includes a copy of Marshall’s Life of Washington annotated by Washington’s aide-de-camp James McHenry with an account of the Battle of Monmouth (lot 227). The important Rotondaro collection of material pertaining to slavery and emancipation and books on the Black experience extends from lots 228 through 269. This is aptly followed by lot 270, an extraordinary Thomas Jefferson letter written as President, in which Jefferson writes on Toussaint Louverture and expresses his fears of “a war of extermination” on Saint-Domingue, now Haiti. Accompanied by two related letters, this occupies the following two lots (lots 271-272). Then follows a selection of American presidential signatures (lots 273-299). General autograph material comes next (lots 300-317), with some attractive Churchill pieces (lots 303-306) and a signed Einstein (lot 307). A selection of costume designs by Edith Head runs from lots 318 to 326, and the sale concludes with a selection of 19th and 20th century art and architecture, lots 327-356.


Edward Ripley-Duggan
Vice-President, Rare Books and Manuscripts Department

212-427-4141, ext 234



Auctioneers & Appraisers

175 East 87th Street

New York, NY 10128



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Rare Book Monthly

  • Fonsie Mealy’s
    Summer Rare Book
    & Collectors’ Sale
    July 30-31, 2024
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: U.S. / European Shipping Archive 1800-1814. The Widow Bermingham & Sons Collection. €7,000 to €10,000.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Bunreacht na hÉireann. Constitution of Ireland. An important copy of the First Printing of De Valera’s new Constitution, approved in 1938. Signed by the Constitution Cabinet. €7,000 to €9,000.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: A Rare Complete Run of the Cuala Press Broadsides. €7,000 to €9,000.
    Fonsie Mealy’s
    Summer Rare Book
    & Collectors’ Sale
    July 30-31, 2024
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Grose (Francis). The Antiquities of Ireland, 2vols. folio London (for S. Hooper) 1791. Magnificent Hand-Coloured Copy - Only 25 Copies. €3,000 to €5,000.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Cantillon (Richard). Essai sur la Nature du Commerce en General, Traduit de l'Anglois, Sm. 8vo London (Fletcher Gyles) 1756. €3,000 to €4,000.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Gregory, (Lady Augusta). Spreading the News: The Rising of the Moon: The Poorhouse (with Douglas Hyde). Being Vol. IX of the Abbey Theatre Series. €3,000 to €4,000.
    Fonsie Mealy’s
    Summer Rare Book
    & Collectors’ Sale
    July 30-31, 2024
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Lavery (Lady Hazel). A moving series of three A.L.S. and a Telegram to Gen. Eoin O'Duffy, July-August 1927, expressing her grief at the death of Kevin O'Higgins. €3,000 to €4,000.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Dampier (Wm.) Nouveau Voyage Autour du Monde, ou l'on descrit en particulier l'Isthme de l'Amerique…, 2 vols. in one, Amsterdam, 1698. €800 to €1,200.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Howell (James). Instructions for Forreine Travel Shewing by what Cours, and in what Compasse of Time…, London, 1642. €800 to €1,200.
    Fonsie Mealy’s
    Summer Rare Book
    & Collectors’ Sale
    July 30-31, 2024
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: Rowling (J.K.) Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, 8vo, L. (Bloomsbury) 1999, First Edn., First Printing of Deluxe Collectors Edn. Signed. €800 to €1,200.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: James (Wm.) A Full and Correct Account of the Military Occurrences of The Late War Between Great Britain and The United States of America. 2 vols. Lond. 1818. €650 to €900.
    Fonsie Mealy’s, July 30-31: The Laws of the United States, Published by Authority, 3 vols. Philadelphia (Richard Folwell) 1796. €600 to €800.
  • Sotheby’s, July 11: Galileo, Document annotated and signed by Galileo, dated Padua, 1595. £500,000 to £700,000.
  • Bonhams, July 15-25: THE AUTOGRAPH COLLECTION OF ISRAEL WITKOWER. $8,000 - $12,000
    Bonhams, July 15-25: GEORGE WASHINGTON SIGNED DISCHARGE. June 9, 1783. $8,000 - $12,000
    Bonhams, July 15-25: "Shhhhh!" A DAVID SHANNON ILLUSTRATION FROM DAVID GETS IN TROUBLE. $2,500 - $3,500
    Bonhams, July 15-25: PICASSO, PABLO. Le Carmen des Carmen. Paris, 1964. $2,000 - $3,000
    Bonhams, July 15-25: KARA WALKER SILHOUETTES FOR TONI MORRISON'S FIVE POEMS. $2,000 - $3,000
    Bonhams, July 15-25: FIRST APPEARANCE OF PINOCCHIO IN ENGLISH. COLLODI, CARLO.New York, 1892. $2,000 - $3,000
    Bonhams, July 15-25: BONAPARTE, JOSEPHINE. Autograph Note (unsigned) in French. $1,000 - $1,500
    Bonhams, July 15-25: FROST ON MATTHEW ARNOLD.Autograph Letter Signed to Adams, July 27, 1934. $800 - $1,200
    Bonhams, July 15-25: ELIAS BOUDINOT'S COPY OF BARLOW'S COLUMBIAN EPIC. $800 - $1,200

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