Human Sciences

Contact Private: Edmund Brumfitt, Jonathan Harrison, Alfred Pasternack or Barbara Scalvini

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. [CIVIL LAW.]

    COMMENTARY, in Latin; a complete paper leaf, double columns of 61 lines, the words commented on written in a large...

    Much of the commentary is concerned with legal transactions and gives instructions about how to produce a valid legal document, such as putting the name of the reigning emperor at the start of the text. The commentary also discusses the different professions and occupations such as head of state, judge,...

    £250

  2. ALBERTI, Leon Battista.

    El Momo. La moral e muy graciosa historia del Momo; compuesta en Latin por el docto varon Leon Bapista...

    Alcalá de Henares, Joan Mey Flandro, 1553.

    First edition in Spanish of Alberti’s Momus [or De principe], translated by Augustín de Almaçan and with an introductory 8-page Exposición by the Toledo ascetic writer and scholar Alejo Venegas (1495?–1554?).

    £3800

  3. VALLE, Rolando della.

    Tractatus non minus utilissimus quam necessarius de inventarii confectione.

    Venice, Giovanni Battista Somaschi, 1573 (printed in 1572, dated in the colophon).

    Very rare first edition of the successful Tractatus of the statesman and jurist Rolando della Valle. It is the first work to systematically treat the procedure for the drawing of organized lists or inventories to be used in the practice of inheritance law.

    £350

  4. STAUNFORD [Stanford], Sir William.

    Les Plees del Coron, Divisees in Plusors Titles & Comon Lieux. Per Queux Home Pluis Redement...

    [London], Richard Tottell, 1583.

    The definitive edition, and that owned by Thomas Jefferson, of the first book devoted entirely to criminal law. First published posthumously in 1557 and based on Bracton and the Year Books, Les Plees deals in turn with offences, jurisdiction, appeals, indictments and defences. The third part is devoted...

    £3000

  5. [DRESS – SUMPTUARY LAW.]

    Ordonnance du Roy pour le reglement & reformation de la dissolution & superfluité qui est és habillemens,...

    Paris, Federic Morel, 1583.

    A rare example of one of the early attempts by the French authorities at sumptuary law relating to clothing, prohibiting the wearing of certain types of adornment and dress by the vast majority of the population. Similar prohibitions had been made by Henri III’s predecessors, and one of his...

    £450

  6. MYLIUS, Georg, and Michael HOPF.

    De visitatione ecclesiastica.

    Jena, Tobias Steinmann, 1593.

    First edition, rare, of an early work on the nature, scope, limits and jurisdiction of canonical visitations, the visitationes ecclesiasticae, a key element in the outline of jurisdiction, responsibility and control established by the Catholic Reformation in the last decades of the sixteenth century.

    £200

  7. HEXHAM, Henry.

    A Tongue-Combat, lately happening betweene two English Souldiers in the Tilt-boat of Gravesend, the one going to...

    Printed at London [i.e. Holland]. 1623.

    First edition, written in reply to a rare pamphlet with a near-identical title by Richard Verstegan [or Rowlands], an intelligence agent in the Netherlands for the English Jesuits. Verstegan’s original Toung-Combat comprised a dialogue between the pro-Catholic Red Scarf and the Protestant...

    £1650

  8. BONACINA, Martino.

    Tractationes Variae ... Prima ... De Simonia. Secunda, De Alienatione bonorum ecclesiasticorum. Tertia, De Largitione...

    Venice, Giunta, 1628.

    Rare early edition of six legal tracts by Bonacina, one of the foremost jurists, theologians and moralists of his age. Bonacina was to die suddenly three years later, immediately after having been appointed Nuncio of Urban VIII at the court of the Emperor.

    £400

  9. BACON, Sir Francis, Baron Verulam.

    The Essayes or counsels, civill and morall … Newly enlarged.

    London, John Haviland, and are sold by R. Allot. 1629.

    The first posthumous edition, largely a reprint of the definitive edition of 1625, in which the essays had been enlarged ‘both in Number, and Weight; So that they are indeed a New Worke’.

    £500

  10. BACON, Francis.

    Francisci Baconi, Baronis de Verulamio, Vice-Comitis Sancti Albani, operum moralium et civilium tomus … cura...

    London, Edward Griffin [and John Haviland] for Richard Whitaker [and John Norton], 1638.

    First edition, first issue, a copy from the celebrated Albani library: tangible witness to the early and fecund reception of Bacon’s thought in the circles of Galileian science in Italy.

    £4500

  11. MORE, Thomas.

    The Common-wealth of Utopia: containing a learned and pleasant Discourse of the best State of a publike-Weale, as...

    London, Printed by B. Alsop & T. Fawcet, and are to be sold by Wil: Sheares … 1639.

    Fifth edition of More’s Utopia in English, translated by Ralph Robinson – the last edition of his translation, first published in 1551, and revised in 1556. Alsop printed a corrected edition in 1624, with a dedication to More’s grandson, Cresacre More, which is reprinted here.

    £2500

  12. PLINY the Younger.

    Epistolarum libri X & panegyricus.

    Leiden, [Bonaventure & Abraham] Elzevir, 1640.

    First Elzevir edition, handsomely bound for the Irish politician Thomas Wogan Browne.

    £450

  13. [PRYNNE, William.]

    A new Discovery of the Prelates Tyranny, in their late Prosecutions of Mr William Pryn, an eminent Lawyer, Dr...

    London, M.S. [Michael Sparke], 1641.

    First edition of Prynne’s account of his own prosecution and persecution for sedition. An anti-Laudian dissenter and prolific puritan pamphleteer, William Prynne (1600-1669) was twice prosecuted for sedition: while imprisoned in the Tower of London on the first charge, relating to his 1633 pamphlet...

    £350

  14. PRYNNE, William.

    The Antipathie of the English lordly prelacie, both to regall monarchy, and civill unity: or, an historicall collection...

    London, Michael Sparke, 1641.

    First edition, one of numerous issues in this year, this with ‘oppressions, & anti-monarchicall practices’ in the titles, as opposed to the reverse. Prynne’s pamphlet, written during the anti-Laudian controversy of the Root and Branch Petition of 1641, was ‘a watershed in his career. For...

    £1250

  15. BACON, Sir Francis, Baron Verulam.

    Cases of Treason …

    London, by the assigns of John More, 1641.

    First edition. Wing B272; Pforzheimer 25.3.

    £200

  16. PRYNNE, William.

    An humble remonstrance against the tax of ship-money lately imposed: laying open the illegality, injustice, abuses,...

    London, Michael Sparke senior, 1643.

    First authorised edition, after the ‘nonsensical, useless, yea ridiculous’ printing of 1641, of this polemic against the ship tax imposed by Charles II in 1634, by the prolific puritan pamphleteer, lawyer, and later Bath MP William Prynne (c.1600-1669), composed while confined to the Tower...

    £750

  17. [THIMS, Gregory.]

    The Protestant informer, or information to all Protestants: shewing the causes and end, of thus unjust warre,...

    London, 1643.

    First and only edition, an anti-Catholic tract associating the Royalist cause in the Civil War with the influence of the Roman church.

    £300

  18. PRYNNE, William.

    Independency examined, unmasked, refuted, by twelve new particular interrogatories: detecting both the manifold...

    London, Michael Sparke Senior, 1644.

    First editions of two works by the puritan lawyer and pamphleteer William Prynne (1600-1669). The first is an attack on independents, who argued for congregational control over church matters, with no national or diocesan hierarchy, and whose influence (through the likes of Cromwell) was great...

    £600

  19. JENKINS, David.

    The Works of that grave and learned lawyer Judge Jenkins, prisoner in Newgate …

    London, J. Gyles, 1648.

    One of at least five editions or variants in 1648, this with ‘VVorks’ not ‘Works’ in the title, ‘J. Gyles’ rather than ‘I. Gyles’ in the imprint, and the divisional title-page to ‘The Cordiall of Judge Jenkins’ dated 1648 not 1647.

    £350

  20. PRYNNE, William.

    A plea for the Lords: or, a short, yet full and necessary vindication of the judiciary and legislative powers...

    London, Michael Spark, 1648.

    First edition of this defence of the House of Lords, and plea for greater attention to and preservation of parliamentary records, by the puritan controversialist, MP, and legal antiquarian William Prynne (c.1600-1669), written in response to Robert Filmer’s Freeholders grand inquest (itself...

    £650