Books and Works on Paper

Sir Malcom Arnold collection auction out of tune

24 April 2017

Offered by Keys (20% buyer’s premium) on April 6, the Sir Malcolm Arnold Collection proved to be a problematic one.

Keeping a watch on the witchfinders

24 April 2017

Published in 1631 in Rinteln, a small town in Lower Saxony, Friederich Spee’s Cautio Criminalis, seu de Processibus Contra Sagas is a first edition in much later boards of a book that has been described as the first serious attack on witchcraft trials and their use of torture.


Tintin takes Chicago taxi ride to Paris auction

24 April 2017

Tintin has had another good day out in Paris. In an Artcurial sale on April 8 a European collector paid €753,000 (£643,815), including premiums and taxes, to buy an ink drawing done by Hergé for the 1937 comic book Tintin in America.


Fruits at the root of £3000 result at auction in Exeter

10 April 2017

Early children’s books and games provided some of the highlights of a March 15 sale held by Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood (21% buyer’s premium).


Welsh items produce white-glove success at Bonhams auction

10 April 2017

With every one of the 531 lots sold, from an oak gateleg table that opened proceedings to a 1925 Douglas motorcycle, the March 29 Bonhams (25/20/15% buyer’s premium) sale of contents from Glyn Cywarch, a Welsh home of the Lords Harlech, was one of those ‘white-glove’ sales in which auction rooms take such pride.


Hieroglyphical riddles and revolting rhymes in Chiswick auction

10 April 2017

Featured in a recent report (ATG No: 2286), a copy of Sir Charles Doyly’s Views of Calcutta and its Environs that sold for £14,000 at Chiswick Auctions (22% buyer’s premium) on March 22 was one of many lots – both printed and manuscript – that came with a Harrington family provenance.


Views of a vanished world wow at auction in Paris

10 April 2017

Published in New York in 1977, The Vanished World Portfolio is a selection of a dozen photographs from the very many that were taken in the late 1930s in Cracow, Warsaw, the Carpathian regions and elsewhere in eastern Europe by Roman Vishniac (1897-1990).


Famous fairy tale author Hans Christian Andersen's jester amuses at auction

10 April 2017

Hans Christian Andersen did not confine himself to the fairy tales that are his principal and lasting legacy.


BOOKS AND WORKS ON PAPER: Mapping the American Southwest

01 April 2017

Shropshire auctioneer sells ‘cartographic cornerstone’ of Tex-Mex history at surprise £16,500...


Who lost the continents of Lemuria and Mu?

01 April 2017

'So Geographers in Afric maps With Savage-Pictures fiill their Gaps; And o’er uninhabitable Downs Place Elephants for want of Towns'.


And then there were two Brothers Karamazov

01 April 2017

“Very rare, most extant copies behind institutional walls,” said Swann (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) of a first English language version of Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov.


Chagall’s ‘Arabian Nights’

01 April 2017

Seen here is one of 13 coloured lithographs by Marc Chagall that make up Tales from the Arabian Nights, a special, deluxe portfolio printed by Albert Carman and published by Pantheon Books in New York in 1948.


Bidder goes wild about Wilde

25 March 2017

Elizabeth Barrett Browning lots fall flat... but annotated Dorian Gray leaves treble the estimate


Writer remains true to type

25 March 2017

Typewriters on which famous books came into existence have featured on these pages before, but not for some time – and certainly not machines of a kind that that continue to be used by their owner to this day.


Bonhams’ double 0 heaven

25 March 2017

A crease that runs around the lower part of the dust jacket detracts somewhat from the appeal of a first impression copy of the first of Ian Fleming’s Bond books, Casino Royale of 1953, but it sold for £16,000 in a March 1 sale held by Bonhams (25/20/12% buyer’s premium).


Shark’s Italian takeaway

25 March 2017

Possibly the first printed reference to a ‘Great White’ shark attack is found in a four-page pamphlet, printed in Naples in 1721, from which the woodcut shown here is taken.

A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs

Life on Mars proves healthy

25 March 2017

With BBC Radio 4 currently offering a season of programmes focusing on the Red Planet in fact and fiction, a couple of books from the Edgar Rice Burroughs series of Martian fantasies that made high prices in a recent US sale are an appropriate choice for these reports.

Critics get an icy reception

25 March 2017

Crymogaea sive rerum Islandicarum… is a very rare history of Iceland by Arngrimur Jónsson, a scholar and teacher also known as Arngrimur the Learned.


Get on the Blowers for his sale

18 March 2017

Cricket commentator who has a way with words offers books from own library at auction


‘Sundial’ distorts view of the world

18 March 2017

Highly unusual, not to say confusing, but mathematically correct is the view of the world as seen in this untitled map of 1640 that made £4500 in a Dominic Winter (19.5% buyer’s premium) sale of March 1.