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. [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...

    £350

  2. SYDNEY, Algernon.

    Discourses concerning Government … with his Letters, Trial, Apology, and some Memoirs of his Life.

    London, A. Millar, 1763.

    Second Millar edition of Sidney’s important Discourses, accompanied by other works. A prominent political theorist opposed to monarchy, Algernon Sidney (1623–1683) wrote the Discourses between 1681 and 1683, argues for armed resistance to oppressive government; the text, which...

    £750

  3. [TODESCHI, Claudio.]

    Lettere filosofiche dirette alla nobil donna la signora baronessa Laura Astalli Piccolomini sotto il nome di Clori.

    Rome, Giovanni Zempel, 1783.

    Extremely rare first edition of these four verse letters by Claudio Todeschi (b. 1737) addressed to baroness Laura Astalli Piccolomini, his fellow member of the Accademia degli Arcadi. Known as 'Clori', Laura was a soprano and one of the last surviving members of the noble Roman family the Astallis;...

    £475

  4. TOMPSON, John, editor.

    English Miscellanies consisting of various Pieces of Divinity, Morals, Politicks, Philosophy and History;...

    Gottingen by Abram. Vandenhoeck, Printer and Bookseller to the University 1746.

    Second edition, revised, of John Tompson’s important English Miscellanies, expanded to almost twice the size of the first edition, including up-to-date content published since 1737.

    £800

  5. [TOYNBEE, Arnold.]

    “Progress and poverty,” a criticism of Mr. Henry George. Being two lectures delivered in St. Andrew’s...

    London, Kegan Paul, Trench & Co., 1883.

    First edition. The transcript of two lectures delivered in 1883 by the social reformer and political economist Arnold Toynbee (1852-1883) criticising Henry George’s Progress and Poverty (1879). Toynbee was convinced that George’s work was too one-sided and sought to mitigate its influence on the...

    £50

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. [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 good copy of this very rare German rendition of Voltaire’s La Pucelle d’Orleans. 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. The translator remains anonymous.

    £100

  9. WATSON, Richard.

    An Apology for the Bible, in a Series of Letters, addressed to Thomas Paine, Author of a Book entitled The Age...

    Robson, and R. Faulder, 1796.

    Third edition of ‘a crucial defence of the political and social order’ (ODNB), published the same year as the first edition. Though his first political sermon, The Principles of the Revolution Vindicated, was in 1776 interpreted as a radical statement of support for the American rebels,...

    £350

  10. 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

  11. WYVILL, Christopher, Rev.

    A more extended Discussion in favour of liberty of conscience. The second edition.

    London, J. Johnson, 1808.

    Second edition, first published the same year. A discussion of the ongoing question of Catholic Emancipation in the wake of the Act of Union between England and Ireland in 1800. Wyvill (1740-1822) was a Scottish-born Yorkshire landowner who advocated universal tolerance.

    £150

  12. [ZATTA, Antonio].

    Il filosofo del nord, ovvero Corso di morale filosofia.

    Londra [i.e. Venice, Zatta], 1788.

    First edition under this title of this course of moral philosophy, broadly construed, where the author attempts to invoke the authority of the “philosophers of the North” (inter alia Hobbes, Bacon, Clark, Addison on one side of the English Channel, Bayle, Pascal, La Mettrie, Grotius and Formey...

    £725