Rare Book Monthly Articles - May - 2023 Issue

An Old Man with his Old Books

My interest in old books is now well into my seventh decade. To a kid in the 1950’s old books were accessible mysteries.  I already had Howes’ USiana and was bumping into its limitations, just 10,500 titles and its narrow focus:  Americana in book form.  Pamphlets, broadsides and ephemera were around but very little of it made its way into Howes. Between them there were 96 references.  In book barns and on random shelves you could see fiction was the bigger category.  Americana was more like a cottage industry.  I learned early I knew more than most sellers and soon began to conceal the How...

Thief Who Stole Over a Thousand Pre-publication Manuscripts Receives No Jail Time

The case of one of the most bizarre book thefts ever imagined has come to a conclusion. The culprit, one Filippo Bernardini, Italian citizen, British resident, arrested in New York, will face no ja...

AbeBooks Top 15 Highest Prices from January-March

AbeBooks has released their list of the top 15 prices paid on the largest old and rare books selling site in the world during the first quarter of 2023. The publishing dates range from 1529-2020, w...

The Crabs Of Sagami Bay and Other Stories of Life in the World of Books

Would you believe I’ll be eighty this month? Born May 1943 I’ll be the big 80 by the time you read this. Since I was part of the generation that subscribed to live fast, die young, I never dreamed ...

Libbie Auctions, long missing, are reappearing!

The Libbie Auction Sales, long missing, are earning their rightful place among the important American auction houses.  They lived and worked in the shadows of Bangs, Anderson and American auctions ...

ALA Reports on Library Censorship, and It Looks Like the Censors May Be Winning

Attempts to censor books in libraries rose dramatically in 2022, the American Library Association reported recently. The ALA documented 1,269 demands to censor library books and resources in 2022, ...

Texas Library Ordered to Return Censored Books to Shelves

Opponents of library censorship won a victory in court in Texas, albeit a small one that might prove illusory. These are challenging times for those seriously concerned with the right of free speec...

A Philosophical Tour Through the Jardin des Plantes

I went to the Jardin des Plantes, in Paris, France, with a small book written by Louis-François Jauffret and entitled Voyage au Jardin des Plantes/Travel To The Jardin des Plantes (Paris, An VI). L...

Court Rules for Copyright Protection Over Open Access in Library Dispute

In a major legal ruling pitting copyright protections against open access to books, the copyright interests have prevailed. The interests of copyright protection was represented by a group of four ...

Major Book Binding Collection to be Sold by Bruce Marshall Rare Books

A bibliographical catalogue of what must be one of the finest and most thorough private collections of material on bookbinding has been published by Clare A. Marshall of Bruce Marshall Rare Books o...

Collectors collect and collecting polymaths collect widely and deeply

Graham Arader lives history and experiences deep pleasure in unearthing connections.  In the rare book and image field he has achieved rare eminence.  His personal tastes go far beyond paper, ink a...

The Codex Sassoon: Tomorrow, Tomorrow and Tomorrow

On May 17th the Codex Sassoon will be sold at Sotheby’s New York. Early and important manuscripts often achieve record outcomes.  This one provides the basis of Biblical translations used by Jews a...

A Library With No Books?

Vermont State University made a stunning announcement in February, they would remove all books from their library for the coming year. Vermont State University will be a combination of three colleg...

ON AUCTIONS - Contemporary Issues and Opportunities in Rare Book & Manuscript Collecting

ON AUCTIONS - Contemporary Issues and Opportunities in Rare Book Manuscript Collecting Monday, May 1, 2023 – 8:00 PM Eastern Live free, Webinar   https://manuscript.org/event/manuscript-monday...

Winnie the Pooh and Xi Jinping Too

Winnie the Pooh banned in China? That's what the headline said. Maybe we shouldn't be surprised. We have had lots of stories of children's books being “banned” here in America recently. Dr. Seuss w...

Five New Catalogues Reviewed This Month

This month we review five new bookseller catalogues. Susanne Schulz-Falster Rare Books has teamed up with Antiquariat Elvira Tasbach to create a catalogue of silhouettes and paper cuts. Zephyr Used...

Rare Book Monthly

  • Forum Auctions
    Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper
    30th May 2024
    Forum, May 30: Potter (Beatrix). Complete set of four original illustrations for the nursery rhyme, 'This pig went to market', 1890s. £60,000 to £80,000.
    Forum, May 30: Dante Alighieri.- Lactantius (Lucius Coelius Firmianus). Opera, second edition, Rome, 1468. £40,000 to £60,000.
    Forum, May 30: Distilling.- Brunschwig (Hieronymus). Liber de arte Distillandi de Compositis, first edition of the so-called 'Grosses Destillierbuch', Strassburg, 1512. £22,000 to £28,000.
    Forum, May 30: Eliot (T.S.), W. H. Auden, Ted Hughes, Philip Larkin, Robert Lowell, Seamus Heaney, Ted Hughes, & others. A Personal Anthology for Eric Walter White, 60 autograph poems. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum, May 30: Cornerstone of French Enlightenment Philosophy.- Helvetius (Claude Adrien). De l'Esprit, true first issue "A" of the suppressed first edition, Paris, 1758. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum Auctions
    Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper
    30th May 2024
    Forum, May 30: Szyk (Arthur). The Haggadah, one of 125 copies, this out-of-series, Beaconsfield Press, 1940. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Fleming (Ian). Casino Royale, first edition, first impression, 1953. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Japan.- Ryusui (Katsuma). Umi no Sachi [Wealth of the Sea], 2 vol., Tokyo, 1762. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Computing.- Operating and maintenance manual for the BINAC binary automatic computer built for Northrop Aircraft Corporation 1949, Philadelphia, 1949. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Burmese School (probably circa 1870s). Folding manuscript, or parabaik, from the Court Workshop at the Royal Court at Manadaly, Burma, [c.1870s]. £8,000 to £12,000.
  • Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    K. Marx, Das Kapital,1867. Dedication copy. Est: € 120,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Latin and French Book of Hours, around 1380. Est: € 25,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Theodor de Bry, Indiae Orientalis, 1598-1625. Est: € 80,000
    Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Breviary, Latin manuscript, around 1450-75. Est: € 10,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    G. B. Piranesi, Vedute di Roma, 1748-69. Est: € 60,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    K. Schmidt-Rottluff, Arbeiter, 1921. Orig. watercolour on postcard. Est: € 18,000
    Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Breviarium Romanum, Latin manuscript, 1474. Est: € 20,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    C. J. Trew, Plantae selectae, 1750-73. Est: € 28,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    M. Beckmann, Apokalypse, 1943. Est: € 50,000
    Ketterer Rare Books
    Auction May 27th
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Ulrich von Richenthal, Das Concilium, 1536. Est: € 9,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    I. Kant, Critik der reinen Vernunft, 1781. Est: €12,000
    Ketterer Rare Books, May 27:
    Arbeiter-Illustrierte Zeitung (AIZ) / Die Volks-Illustrierte (VI), 1932-38. Est: €8,000
  • Sotheby’s
    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Winston Churchill. The Second World War. Set of First-Edition Volumes. 6,000 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: A.A. Milne, Ernest H. Shepard. A Collection of The Pooh Books. Set of First-Editions. 18,600 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Salvador Dalí, Lewis Carroll. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Finely Bound and Signed Limited Edition. 15,000 USD
    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ian Fleming. Live and Let Die. First Edition. 9,500 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter Series. Finely Bound First Printing Set of Complete Series. 5,650 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ernest Hemingway. A Farewell to Arms. First Edition, First Printing. 4,200 USD

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