8vo, (230 x 145 mm), pp. 382; cloth-bound.
US $52 €47
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At First, All Went Well… & Other Brief Lives.
This book brings together eighty obituaries written by Nicolas Barker. The first were published in 1966 and the last in 2018. Print links them all: they were printers, publishers, librarians, booksellers or book collectors, their lives joined by a common dedication to the printed word and all that goes with it.
At First, All Went Well… opens with C.H. Wilkinson and Sir Sydney Roberts and ends with Barney Rosenthal and Ian Doyle. Such people as Graham Pollard, Don McKenzie, Nicolete Gray, Mary Hyde, Bernard Breslauer, Justin Howes and Joe Tanner are then chronicled along the way.
In 2013 Quaritch published Nicolas Barker at eighty: a list of his publications to mark his 80th birthday. As the book records, Nicolas Barker has written on an extensive range of topics including medieval manuscripts, calligraphy, forgery, the book trade, typography, bibliophily and bookbinding.
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C[OLOMBO]. A[POTHECARIES]. CO. LTD.
Caryota Urens (Kitul), Botanical Study,
Charles Scowen arrived in Ceylon around 1873 and was initially an assistant to R. Edley, the Commission Agent in Kandy before opening a photographic studio around 1876. By 1885 his photography firm had studios in Colombo and Kandy. Scowen was a later arrival to Ceylon than Skeen and his work is less well-known, but: ‘Much of Scowen’s surviving work displays an artistic sensibility and technical mastery which is often superior to their longer-established competitor. In particular, the botanical studies are outstanding…’ (Falconer, J. and Raheem, I., Regeneration: a reappraisal of photography in Ceylon 1850 –1900, p. 19). In the early 1890s the firm was being run by Mortimer Scowen, a relative of Charles Scowen. By about 1894 the firm’s stock of negatives had been acquired by the ‘Colombo Apothecaries Co Ltd’. This print is likely to have been made in the 1890s from negatives made earlier.
Le miniature Italiane del Kupferstichkabinett di Berlino.
From the presentation leaf: ‘Bernard Quaritch Ltd is delighted to be a sponsor of this magnificent publication. We feel sure that our German founder, both as publisher of scholarly works and dealer in medieval manuscripts, would have been proud to support Beatrice Alai’s catalogue of the Italian miniatures in one of the great German collections. Quaritch would certainly have known the Kupferstichkabinett’s illustrious director Friedrich Lippmann, for in 1888 he published Lippmann’s The Art of wood-engraving in Italy in the fifteenth century, the same year in which Lippmann acquire from Quaritch the splendid Roman calendar leaf which is described within these pages.’