8vo, pp. [1 (blank)], 253, [3 (blank)]; a very good copy in the original publisher’s printed red cloth, without dustjacket; a little rubbed with a few small marks.
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דאָס אינטערערדישע רוסלאַנד … איבערזעצט פון א. פרומקין
[Dos untererdishe Rusland … ubersetzt vun A. Frumkin].
Scarce first American edition in Yiddish of Stepniak’s first and most influential book. Written in Italian during exile in Switzerland following his assassination of Nikolai Mezentsov, chief of Alexander II’s secret police, Underground Russia was published in 1882 and translated into English the following year. Comprising introductory essays on nihilism, propaganda, and terrorism, followed by biographies of early Russian revolutionaries and accounts of revolutionary incidents, the work was widely translated and influential in anti-Tsarist circles in Europe and America.
Published in the wake of the Revolution, this translation is by Abraham Frumkin, one of the leading translators of mainly political literature into Yiddish and contributor to the daily New York paper Yiddishe Welt. This is the second Yiddish translation we have been able to trace, preceded only by an even rarer edition published by Shapiro in London in 1897 (issued in ’17 Hefte’, according to the New York Public Library). The text is here prefaced by a short biography of Stepniak.
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COLOURED PANORAMA FARINGTON, Susan Maria (illustrator).
The 104th Psalm. Illustrated by Susan Maria Ffarington. Worden.
The Faringtons or Ffaringtons were an ancient family of Worden Hall, Leyland, Lancashire, with a substantial family archive. Susan Maria (1808–1894) edited The Farington Papers for the Chetham Society in 1856, and made other contributions to local history, but this unusual panorama seems to have been her only foray into illustration. Psalm 104 lent itself to some striking landscape plates: horses and oxen (‘He sendeth the springs into the valleys, which run among the hills. They give drink to every beast of the field’); cedars of Lebanon (‘The trees of the Lord are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon which he hath planted’); mountain scenery (‘The high hills are a refuge for the wild goats and the rocks for the conies’); sunset and daybreak; and three volcanoes (‘He toucheth the hills and they smoke’).
A CHESS CLASSIC [MONTIGNY, Alfred de.]
Les stratagèmes des échecs, ou collection des coups d’échecs les plus brillans et les plus curieux, tant dans la partie ordinaire que dans les différentes parties composées; tirés des meilleurs auteurs, et dont plusieurs n’ont point encore été publiés. Avec des planches où l’on trouve notée la position de chaque coup. Par un amateur.
First edition of this charming pocket-sized chess manual. Montigny’s work is divided into six chapters, preceded by the introduction, a poem on chess by Joseph-Antoine-Joachim Cerutti (1738–1792), the plan of the work, and an explanation of the symbols used in the diagrams. The first and longest chapter concerns those occasions when ‘the two players, having a more-or-less equal number of pieces, have no advantage over the other except that of position’ (p. 24 trans.). The second chapter concerns ‘subtle moves and singular checkmates’, the third capped (or marked) pawns, the fourth stalemate, the fifth forced stalemate, and the sixth the variant game of losing chess or antichess. The diagrams in the second part reproduce the moves described in the first part. A classic of chess literature, Martigny’s work was translated into German the same year, and into English in 1816.