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Our Continental department specialises in incunabula, Greek and Latin classics, early vernacular imprints, and notable texts from the Renaissance, the Reformation, and the early modern era, with a specific section devoted to medieval manuscripts, fragments, and illuminations.

We regularly issue lists and catalogues, offering a wide variety of literary, historical, and philosophical books printed in Italy, France, Spain, Germany, Switzerland, the Low Countries, Eastern Europe, and Russia.  Woodcuts, early engravings, notable bindings, notable marginalia, rare manuscript or printed survivals, and books with a remarkable provenance are among our keenest interests and feature regularly in our stock.

  1. SENECA, Lucius Annaeus.

    L. Annei Senecae opera, et ad dicendi facultatem, et ad bene vivendu[m] utilissima, per Des. Erasmum Roterod....

    Basel, ‘in officina Frobeniana’, 1529 [(colophon:) Basel, Johann Herwagen, March 1537].

    Second Erasmus edition of the moral essays and letters of Seneca, owned and annotated by Ludovicus Carinus (d. 1569), friend and later foe of Erasmus himself.


  2. SENECA, Lucius Anneus. 

    Tragoediae pristinae integritati restitutae, per exactissimi judicii viros post Avantium & Philologum … 

    Paris, Badius Ascensius, 1514. 

    First edition edited by Erasmus and Badius Ascensius, a landmark in the history of Seneca’s textual tradition.  This key work, the product of a collaboration between two wholly committed humanists, cannot have been accomplished without some friction: Erasmus had allowed Badius to make use of...


  3. SIMONETTA, Bonifacio.

    De Christiane Fidei et Romanorum Pontificum Persecutionibus.

    (Colophon:) Basel, Nicolaus Kesler, 1509.

    A beautiful copy of the second edition of Simonetta’s principal work, from the library of Christian VI (1699–1746), King of Denmark and Norway, and containing an early yet intriguing reference to the New World.



    Les découvertes d’un bibliophile réduites a leur juste valeur.  Avec quelques cas de conscience curieux. 

    Strasbourg, L.F.  Le Roux, [1843]. 

    First edition of this scathing response to Busch’s anti-Jesuit Les découvertes d’un bibliophile, central to the highly polemical ‘affaire du Bibliophile’ which divided Strasbourg in 1843. 


  5. SPATARI, Pellegrino. 

    Le orationi delle Messe di tutto l’anno, tradutte da Don Pellegrino Spathari canonico di Capodistria. ...

    Pesaro, Bartolomeo Cesano, 1555. 

    Rare first edition of this Italian translation of Latin prayers from the Missal by Spatari, a priest from Capodistria (modern-day Koper in Slovenia), dedicated to Vittoria Farnese, Duchess of Urbino (1519–1602). 


  6. STAPLETON, Thomas. 

    Promptuarium Catholicum ad instructionem concionatorum contra haereticos nostri temporis, super omnia evangelia...

    Antwerp, Pierre Beller, 1592. 

    Rare third edition, expanded, of Stapleton’s handbook or ‘storehouse’ of scriptural devotions for Sundays and feast days, first published in 1589.  An independent companion volume for the weekdays in Lent was first published in 1594. 


  7. STEPNIAK, Sergey. 

    דאָס אינטערערדישע רוסלאַנד … איבערזעצט פון א. פרומקין

    New York, Maks N. Maisel, 1921. 

    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...


  8. STEUART, Walter (of Pardovan?).

    ‘The ABC with the Shorter Catechisme appointed by the general Assembly to be a Directory for...

    Edinburgh. Written by Walter Stewart. 1714[–15].

    A very attractive calligraphic manuscript catechism, largely reproducing the very rare edition printed in Edinburgh in 1696 (NLS and Bodley only in ESTC). It was apparently produced in November–December 1714, and the imitation of both blackletter and roman type is consistently excellent throughout....


  9. STOBAEUS, Johannes.

    Εκλογαι αποϕθεγματων και υποθηκων … Sententie ex thesauris Graecorum delectae …...

    Basel, Johann Oporinus for Christoph Froschauer, August 1549.

    Second, ‘in every respect preferable’ (Dibdin) edition of Gesner’s Stobaeus, acclaimed as ‘the first critical impression of the text of the Florilegium’ (ibid.), philologically and critically much superior to the first, published in 1543. Gesner’s parallel printing of the Greek...


  10. STRABO.

    Strabonis geographicorum lib. XVII ... iam denuo a Conrado Heresbachio … ad fidem Graeci exemplaris, authorumque …...

    Basel, Johann Walder, 1539.

    Second edition of Strabo’s masterful Geographica in the Latin translation of the German Humanist and friend of Erasmus, Konrad Heresbach (1496–1576), here found with the first Latin translation of an epitome of Strabo’s work by the Basel professor of physic and logic, Hieronymus Gemusaeus...


  11. STRAPAROLA, Giovanfrancesco.

    Le piacevoli notti di messer Giovanfrancesco Straparola da Caravaggio.

    Venice, Domenico Giglio, 1558.

    An early edition of both volumes of Straparola’s Facetious nights, first published in 1550–53.


  12. STRYPE, John.

    The Life of the learned Sir John Cheke, Kt., first Instructer, afterwards Secretary of State, to King Edward VI.,...

    London, John Wyat, 1705.

    First edition of Strype’s biography of the courtier and classicist Sir John Cheke, inaugural Regius Professor of Greek at Cambridge.


  13. SUCQUET, Antoine.

    Via vitae aeternae iconibus illustrata per Boetium a Bolswert.

    Antwerp, Martin Nutius, 1620.

    First edition, a very clean, attractive copy, of an emblem book which unites the spiritual meditations and practices of the Belgian Jesuit Antoine Sucquet with fine emblematic illustrations devised by the great baroque engraver Boetius a Bolswert (c. 1580-1633), called by Praz ‘the illustrator...


  14. SWIFT, Jonathan. 

    A Tale of a Tub … to which is added, an Account of a Battle between the antient and modern Books in St. James’s...

    London, C. Bathurst, 1751. 

    A scarce later edition of Swift’s classic satires on corruption in religion and learning, as exemplified in the conduct of Peter (Roman Catholicism), Martin (Luther), and Jack (Calvin) in the Tale of the Tub, and the spirited fight over the highest peak of Parnassus in the Battel of...


  15. SYKES, Arthur Ashley. 

    The Duty of Love to God, and to our Neighbours.  A Sermon preach'd at the Assizes held at Chelmsford in...

    London, J. Darby & T. Browne for Chelmsford, Samuel Lobb, 1728. 

    First and only edition of this sermon given by the latitudinarian and controversialist Arthur Ashley Sykes (c. 1684–1756). 


  16. TACITUS. 

    C. Cornelius Tacitus, cum optimis exemplaribus collatus. 

    Amsterdam, Daniel Elzevir, 1678. 

    A remarkably fresh set of the third and final Elzevir edition of this format, reprinted from the edition of 1665. 


  17. TAULER, Johannes, attributed. 

    Exercitia D. Ioannis Thauleri piissima, super vita et passione salvatoris nostri Iesu Christi,...

    Antwerp, Philippus Nutius, 1565. 

    Uncommon Antwerp edition of Laurentius Surius’s Latin translation of a devotional work on the life and passion of Christ attributed to the medieval German mystic Johannes Tauler (c. 1300–1361), in an attractive contemporary binding and with interesting manuscript notes. 


  18. TERENCE Afer, Publius. 

    Comoediae sex, tum ex Donati commentariis … diligentius quam unquam antehac emendatae; Aelii Donati...

    Paris, Robert Estienne, 1529. 

    First folio edition of Terence’s comedies by Robert Estienne.  The printer had already produced a small, octavo edition of Terence’s works in 1526.  Confident in its success, and through access to an excellent and ancient manuscript of the fourth-century commentary by Aelius Donatus, ‘in...



    who are in Place to do Justice, and to break the Bonds of the oppressed. A Narrative of the cruel,...

    London, Printed for Thomas Simmons …, 1659.

    First edition, rare, a list of Quaker victims of persecution in Ireland with details of their sufferings. The pamphlet was published and undersigned by a group of the victims including the country’s reputed first Quaker, William Edmondson, and Thomas Holme, who went on to publish A Brief...



    Messer Giovanni Gerson. Utile & divota operetta della imitatione di Giesu Xpo …

    Florence, Piero Pacini da Pescia, 16 April 1505.

    Scarce edition of an anonymous Italian translation of the Imitatio Christi, with a striking woodcut of Christ to the title.