Human Sciences

Contact Barbara Scalvini or Jonathan Harrison

Human Sciences at Quaritch embraces a wide range of books and manuscripts documenting the history of ideas from the earliest times up to about 1960. Our strengths are in the history of economic thought and in philosophy, but we also deal in law; finance and banking (including speculation, actuarial science and insurance); politics and political theory; sociology; psychology; agriculture; education; logic; and the theory of language.

Some notable items which have recently passed through our hands include the only known copy of the Communist Manifesto inscribed by Karl Marx, Rudolf Carnap’s annotated copy of Wittgenstein’s Tractatus (Logisch-philosophische Abhandlung), Joseph Penso de la Vega’s Confusion de Confusiones (1688, the first book to describe the practice of a stock-exchange) and a copy of Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (4th edition, 1786), inscribed in Smith's own hand to Bonnie Prince Charlie's private secretary.

As well as dealing in individual books and manuscripts, we also offer collections. In recent years we have sold author collections of Friedrich Nietzsche, Bertrand Russell, Thorstein Veblen, Emile Durkheim and Jeremy Bentham. Among subject collections we have offered are the Herwood Library of accounting literature (including Pacioli's Summa de Arithmetica, 1494, the first printed exposition of double-entry book-keeping); the philosophy of language; texts pertaining to the theory and study of language in the West, and the history of probability - the calculus of probabilities, statistics and their applications.

  1. [SERRES, Jean de].

    Gouvernement politique et economique. Tome premier [- troisieme].

    Amsterdam, aux dépens de la Compagnie, 1766.

    First and only edition, rare, of a little-studied work on politics and economics attributed to the president of the Chambre des Comptes of Montpellier. The Avis tells us that the author had completed his work by 1759. By the beginning of the printing he had modified his original manuscript in two chapters:...

    £3500

  2. SEXTUS EMPIRICUS.

    Adversus mathematicos, Hoc est, adversus eos qui profitentur disciplinas ... Graecè nunquam, Latinè nunc primùm...

    Paris, Martin Le Jeune, 1569.

    First collected edition of Sextus Empiricus (fl. AD 200), the only sceptic philosopher of antiquity whose works have survived. It includes his two major works, the Pyrrhonian Hypotyposes (or Outlines of Pyrrhonism), which had appeared in 1562 and the Adversus mathematicos (or Against the Professors)...

    £3750

  3. SMITH, Adam.

    The Works of Adam Smith … With an account of his life and writings by Dugald Stewart … in five volumes.

    London: printed for T. Cadell and W. Davies … 1812 (vols 1-3), 1811 (vols 4-5).

    First edition of the collected works, including The Theory of Moral Sentiments, An Enquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, Considerations Concerning the Formation of Languages and Essays on Philosophical Subjects. The account of Smith’s life by Dugald Stewart, another leading light...

    £5000

  4. SPEDALIERI, Nicola.

    De’ diritti dell’uomo libri VI …

    Assisi, [recte Rome,] 1791.

    First edition of Spedalieri’s treatise on the rights of man, an attempt to reconcile the principles of the Enlightenment underpinning the French Revolution with Christianity. For Spedalieri the rights of man lie in nature and in man’s natural desire to be happy. Rousseau’s contractual picture of...

    £700

  5. [SPINOZA, Benedict de].

    Opera posthuma, quorum Series post Praefationem exhibetur.

    [Amsterdam, Jan Rieuwertsz,] 1677.

    First appearance of Spinoza’s Ethic, his philosophical masterpiece, and first edition of the Opera posthuma, which ‘have served, then and since, with the Tractatus Theologico-Politicus, to immortalize his name’ (PMM 153).

    £10000

  6. STEWART, Dugald.

    Philosophical Essays.

    Edinburgh, George Ramsay and Company for William Creech and Archibald Constable, T. Cadell and W. Davies, John Murray, and Constable, Hunter,...

    First edition. Dedicated to the Abbé Prevost, who had translated the first volume of Stewart’s Elements of the Philosophy of the Human Mind (1792) into French two years earlier, the present work includes essays on Locke, Berkeley, the metaphysical theories of Hartley, Priestley and Darwin, and on...

    £400

  7. STEWART, Dugald.

    Esquisses de philosophie morale …

    Paris, A. Johanneau, 1826.

    First edition in French of Stewart’s Outlines of Moral Philosophy (1793), translated from the fourth English edition of 1818, with a 152-page prefatory essay by the translator, Théodore-Simon Jouffroy.

    £450

  8. STIRLING, James Hutchison, Sir.

    The secret of Hegel.

    London, Longman, Green…, 1865.

    First edition of the Scottish philosopher’s first book, which ‘revealed for the first time to the English public the significance and import of Hegel’s idealistic philosophy…’ (DNB). The book had a notable impact in America too.

    £180

  9. SULIVAN, Richard Joseph.

    Philosophical Rhapsodies. Fragments of Akbur of Betlis. Containing Reflections on the Laws, Manners, Customs...

    London: Printed for T. Becket … Bookseller to his Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, and their Royal Highnesses the Princes. 1784-5.

    First edition of this eccentric travel-inspired treatise drawing upon the author’s experience in India and his travels in Europe. The prefatory ‘advertisement’ establishes the fiction that ‘the following fragments were written by a native of Assyria [Akbur], who … was removed to the continent...

    £950

  10. SÜSSMILCH, Johann Peter.

    Die göttliche Ordnung in den Veränderungen des menschlichen Geschlechts, aus der Geburt, dem Tode und...

    Berlin, Verlag des Buchladens der Realschule, 1761.

    The first volume of the second, much enlarged edition of this pioneering work on statistics by a German clergyman, which first appeared in a single volume in 1741. The second volume appeared separately a year later, and the two are very seldom to be found together. ‘J. P. Süssmilch ... may be said...

    £950

  11. [SWEDIAUER, Franz Xavier].

    The Philosophical dictionary: or the opinions of modern philosophers on metaphysical, moral and political...

    London, for G.G.J. and J Robinson, 1786.

    First edition of this philosophical dictionary, featuring extracts from ‘the writings of the most eminent philosophers in Europe’ (preface) chosen by Swediaur, who originally compiled the collection as a sort of commonplace book for his private use. The broad-reaching content includes contributions...

    £800

  12. TUGAN-BARANOVSKII, Mikhail Ivanovich.

    Russkaia fabrika v proshlom’ i nastoiashchem’ [The Russian factory in the past and present].

    St Petersburg, L. F. Pantelev, 1898.

    First edition thus, originally issued as the author’s doctoral dissertation in 1894, a historic-economic analysis of Russian factories up to the 19th century. Beginning with a long introductory chapter on the 18th century, the work analyses factory development before and after the emancipation of the...

    £1750

  13. [VILLENEUVE, Daniel Jost de].

    Le Voyageur philosophe dans un pais inconnu aux habitans de la Terre … Par M. Listonai. Tome premier...

    Amsterdam, ‘aux depens de l’éditeur’, 1761.

    First edition. In this account of a dreamed lunar citadel, Sélénopolis, the author (of whom little is known) explores a classic theme of Enlightenment thought – the comparison between the natural and the social state of man. The work is particularly notable for its ideas on technology, aviation...

    £2250

  14. [VOLTAIRE.]

    Das Mädchen von Orleans. Ein komisches Heldengedicht in zwölf Gesängen nach Voltaire frei bearbeitet.

    Neustadt, ‘im Verlags-Comptoir’, n. d. [mid nineteenth century].

    A freely adapted German rendition of La Pucelle d’Orleans, very rare. Fromm gives the date as around 1865 (and the place of publication as Hamburg), the online Staatsbibliothek catalogue (the only copy listed by KVK) as c.1830.

    £400

  15. WHITEHEAD, Alfred North.

    On mathematical concepts of the material world [in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of...

    London, Dulau & Co, 1906.


    First edition of one of the earliest of Whitehead’s works, the first attempt to tacke the question of the nature of the material world through the symbolism of formal logic.

    £1750