We stock Western books in European languages, generally – but not exclusively – published before circa 1850. We are especially interested in early travel accounts – from the late fifteenth to the eighteenth centuries – in all areas beyond Europe.Geographical regions in which we have tended to specialise include the Pacific and its surrounding countries – South America, the Northwest Coast of America, Japan, China, the maritime regions of Asia, including the Philippines and Indonesia, and Australia. Books on Africa, the polar regions, manuscripts and separately published maps are also handled.
VENUSTI, Antonio Maria.
Compendio utilissimo di quelle cose, le quali a nobili e christiani mercanti appartengono.
Milan, Giovan Antonio degli Antonij, 1561.
First edition, containing Discorso d’intorno alla Mercantia and Trattato del Cambio di Lione o di Bisenzone and Trattato de’ Cambi, and including the Italian translation of Saravia de la Calle’s Institutione de’ Mercanti.
THE RATES OF MERCHANDISE,
That is to say, the Subsidy of Tonnage, Subsidy of Poundage, and the Subsidy of Woollen Clothes or Old-Drapery,...
London, Edward Husbands and Thomas Newcomb, 1660.
Printed descriptions of the import duties on wine and merchandise appeared in England as early as 1545. This later edition is one of the first editions after the lifetime of Charles I, who levied the duties without the authority of parliament. Printed at the instigation of the House of Commons, it was...
OUT, Sieuwert Jansz.
Uytgerekende tafelen in’t gout en silver, gereduceert uyt marken troys, in marken fijns ... Van nieuws gecalculeert,...
Amsterdam, Marcus Willemsz Doornick, 1681.
Rare corrected and enhanced edition (first 1651) of Out’s essential manual for gold and silver merchants in the golden age of the Dutch Republic when Dutch trade was at its height, dedicated to three chief commissioners of the Wisselbank of Amsterdam. Out worked as an assayer at the bank and was highly...
[ROYAL FISHERY COMPANY.]
A Collection of Advertisements, Advices, and Directions, relating to the Royal Fishery within the British...
London, printed for H.M. and sold by J. Whitlock, 1695.
First edition. The Royal Fishery Company, incorporated in 1662, had great trouble finding subscribers. Initially, Charles II offered £9000 as an incentive to investors but on these only raising £3680 he withdrew his undertaking, instead allowing a lottery to aid the Company’s fortunes. After attempts...
[ROYAL LUSTRING COMPANY.]
The Report of the Committee of the House of Commons, to whom the Petition of the Royal Lustring-Company...
London, E. Whitlock, 1698.
First edition; a French version appeared the same year. Since its foundation in 1688, the Royal Lustring Company (importers of ‘lustrings’ or ‘alamodes’ – a fine, light, glossy, black silk) had enjoyed special monopolistic privileges which it had exploited to the full. However, by the end...
The case of Jeronimy Clifford, merchant and planter of Surinam. Paper, No. 160.
[London, n.p., 1711].
First extended account of Clifford’s long-running legal battle with the Dutch West India Company in Surinam over Corcabo, his sugar plantation. The earlier publications had been just four pages long; this work furnishes us with plantation account details and testimonies, chronologically arranged with...
[LONDON ASSURANCE CORPORATION.]
By-laws, orders, and rules, for the good government of the corporation of the London assurance....
London, n.p., 1722.
First edition of the by-laws of the London Assurance Corporation, which, along with The Royal Exchange Assurance Corporation, was constituted and granted sole rights, excepting private individuals, to the granting of assurance and bottomry by ‘The Bubble Act’ of 1720. The right to self-govern, reflected...
Some general considerations concerning the alteration and improvement of publick revenues.
London, J. Roberts, 1733.
First edition of Walpole’s anonymous, persuasive defence of an excise to be levied by the government on tobacco and wines. Walpole urges calm in response to what he considers perfectly reasonable measures for the increase of public funds. Corrupt merchants were aghast at the threat of warehouse inspections,...
The instructor: or, young man’s best companion…to which is added the family’s best companion…
London, for A. Bettesworth and C. Hitch, [not before 1735].
Second edition, (first, 1727). ‘Volumes entitled The Young Man’s companion exist in many versions and go back to the 1680s when William Mather produced the first of them. They are compendiums of useful information, intended for self-improvement. They concentrate on English, Mathematics, including...
Sir Isaac Newton’s tables for renewing and purchasing the leases of cathedral-churches and colleges, according...
London, printed for Thomas Astley, 1742
Sixth edition, first published in 1686, this issue was sometimes also published with a separate title page and imprint reading, ‘The money’d man’s pocket-book’, London, 1742’ immediately preceding the title-page of the second part. A series of tables calculating the amounts owed on leases based...
The case of authors by profession or trade, stated: with regard to booksellers, the stage, and the public. No matter...
London, R. Griffiths, 1758.
First edition, ‘the first protest raised in the eighteenth century against the treatment of authors and dramatists by booksellers and theatre managers’ (ODNB). From this work Isaac D’Israeli extensively quoted (without acknowledgement) in his Calamities of authors, and it is very likely that Oliver...
[VIVANT DE MEZAGUES].
Bilan général et raisonné de l’Angleterre, depuis 1600 jusqu’à la fin de 1761; ou Lettre à M. L....
[Paris, n.p.,] 1762.
First edition, a nice copy. ‘The object of the “letter” is to show that the wealth and trade of England were not greater than that of France. With this view the author examines into the balance of trade between England and other countries (including Ireland), the national income and debt, exchanges,...
Betydande frågor om handelen, wid tilfålle af de motsäjelser, som skedde emot den sista billen, om utlänningars...
Stockholm, Jon. G. Langes [colophon: N. v. Oelreich], 1763.
First Swedish edition, scarce, of this history on the treatment of foreign residents in Britain, Reflections on the Expediency of a Law for the Naturalization of Foreign Protestants (1751–1752). This book comprises only the main body of Part II (1752), ‘Important Queries occasioned by The Rejection...
A Six Weeks Tour, through the Southern Counties of England and Wales. Describing, particularly, I. The present...
London, W. Nicoll, 1768.
First edition. ‘Young’s own estimate of this book is that it is one “in which for the first time, the facts and principles of Norfolk husbandry were laid before the public”, but important as these facts were ... the book is more valuable than Young would have us believe. It laid before the public...
The tour of Holland, Dutch Brabant, the Austrian Netherlands, and part of France; in which is included a description...
London, G. Kearsly, 1772.
First edition. This very readable epistolary work recounts the travels of a trio of young English gentlemen and a monolingual servant, as they set off on a grand tour of central Europe. As well as details of the travelling process, including a full resume of expenses incurred, Peckham also provides detailed...
Livre utile aux négocians de l’Europe, contenant les réductions des argents dont ils...
Paris, chez Valade; Brussels, chez Emmanuel Flon, 1774.
Panarithmologia: or the trader’s sure guide. Containing exact and useful tables, ready cast up, adapted to...
New corrected and enlarged edition, first published 1693. Described by De Morgan as the earliest English ready reckoner, Panarithmologia… was hugely popular; running to over twenty editions and remaining in print into the nineteenth century.
Fascetto di pratiche matematiche spiegato alle persone popolari per uso del comercio umano, e civile, in questa...
Verona, Dionisio Ramanzini, 1780.
A lovely copy of the second edition, considerably augmented from the first of 1754, of this book of applied mathematical problems by the Veronese mathematician Gaetano Marzaglia (1716-1787), heavily influenced by the work of Wolff, who provides the motto to the book, and whose works he edited and expanded....
Des Herrn Mackintosh’s Reisen durch Europa, Asia und Africa, worinnen die Charaktere, Gebräuche, Sitten...
Leipzig, Friedrich Gotthold Jacobäer, 1785.
First edition in German (first English 1782). Composed of seventy-two letters written during the course of a trip to India, dealing largely with the government and economies of the East Indies. In letter 25, (pp. 134-140), Mackintosh reports that at the Cape of Good Hope in April 1799, one Daniel Barwell...
MIRABEAU, Honoré Gabriel Riquetti, comte de.
De la Banque d'Espagne, dite de Saint-Charles.
First edition. McCulloch describes De la Banque D’Espagne as an “energetic remonstrance against the establishment of the bank in question, which had the consequences foretold by Mirabeau” (McCulloch, p. 188). The second work is a letter on the same subject often found bound up together.