Gift Ideas

  1. DAMIANO, da Odemira.

    Libro da imparare giocare a scachi, et de bellissimi partiti, revisti [et] recoretti, [et] con summa diligentia...

    [Rome(?), after 1524.]

    Extremely rare early edition of the first book to deal with the complete game and the first to give directions for playing without seeing the board.

    £4750

  2. WILBERFORCE, William. 

    A Practical View of the prevailing religious System of professed Christians …  the seventeenth edition. 

    London: Printed for T. Cadell … 1829. 

    A presentation copy, inscribed on the front endpaper: ‘To my Old College Friend Robt Holford Esqr this Book is presented as a slight pledge of the Cordial Regard of his Brother Johnian WWilberforce / Brighston 1st Oct 1830 Isle of Wight’. 

    £1250

  3. VISSCHER, Nicolaes [I].

    Avium vivae et artificiosissimae delineationes.

    Amsterdam, Nicolaus [I] Visscher, 1659.

    First and only edition of this rare set of ornithological prints by the famed cartographer Nicolaes Visscher I.

    £3750

  4. VANE, Charles William, Marquess of Londonderry.

    A Steam Voyage to Constantinople, by the Rhine and the Danube, in 1840–41,...

    London, Henry Colburn, 1842. 

    First edition, scarce on the market, of this ‘very interesting work’ (Blackmer) by Vane (1778–1854), the half-brother of Lord Castlereagh who served under Wellington in the Peninsular War and later as ambassador at the Congress of Vienna. 

    £1500

  5. STANHUF, Michael. 

    De meteoris libri duo, quorum prior tradit de aethere et elementis.  Posterior complectitur omnium fere meteororum...

    Wittenberg, [Johann Krafft for Samuel Selfisch], 1578.

    An attractive sammelband of two scarce astronomical works, in an appealing contemporary binding and with some interesting annotations, opening with the second edition (first 1562) of the chief work of Michael Stanhuf (d. 1608), a student of Melanchthon at Wittenberg. 

    £2750

  6. DONNE, John. 

    Devotions upon Emergent Occasions, and severall Steps in my Sicknes ... 

    London, Printed for Thomas Jones … 1627.

    Third (and last lifetime) edition of Donne’s most familiar prose work, composed during his convalescence in 1623–4 from the ‘spotted Feaver’ which nearly killed him.  It consists of twenty-three ‘Stationes, sive Periodi in Morbo’, each comprising a meditation, expostulation, and prayer. 

    £13500

  7. MAJER, Andrea. 

    Discorso sulla origine, progressi, e stato attuale della musica italiana … 

    Padua, ‘dalla Tipografia e Fonderia della Minerva’, 1821. 

    First edition of Majer’s treatise on music, ‘a conservative defence of tradition as part of a backlash against the popularity of Rossini’s reforms’ (Baragwanath, p. 29). 

    £185

  8. BRATHWAITE, Richard.

    Natures Embassie: or, the Wilde-mans Measures: danced naked by twelve Satyres, with sundry others continued...

    [London,] Printed for Richard Whittaker. 1621.

    First edition of a substantial collection of satires, elegies and eclogues. The structure is somewhat chaotic, as is common with Braithwaite, and different sections are dedicated variously to Thomas Huett, Lady Philadelphia Wharton (daughter of Robert Carey, Earl of Monmouth), and Thomas Ogle.

    £13500

  9. [KINGDOM OF THE TWO SICILIES.] 

    Ruoli de’ generali ed uffiziali attivi e sedentanei del reale esercito e dell’armata di mare...

    Napoli, Reale Tipografia Militare, 1855.

    Scarce 1855 edition of this roster of army and navy officers, doctors, chaplains, and administrators in the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, issued during the reign of Ferdinand II and only a few years before the kingdom’s demise, handsomely bound with the royal arms on each board.

    £400

  10. NELSON, John.

    An Extract of John Nelson’s Journal, being an Account of God’s Dealing with his Soul from his Youth to the forty-second...

    Bristol, E. Farley & Co., 1767.

    Rare first edition, printed in Bristol, of the autobiography of the preacher and pioneer of Methodism in Yorkshire John Nelson (1707–1774).

    £600

  11. LEWIS, Wyndham.

    The Demon of Progress in the Arts.

    London, Methuen & Co. Ltd., 1954.

    First edition, inscribed ‘To Geoffrey / my best copy / Wyndham’. Lewis breaks here with abstraction in the arts, naming Michael Ayrton, Francis Bacon, Henry Moore, Ceri Richards and others as ‘the finest group of painters and sculptors which England has ever known’. Ayrton collaborated...

    £650

  12. LEWIS, Wyndham.

    The Childermass … Section 1.

    London, Chatto & Windus, 1928.

    First edition, no. 74 of 225 copies of the special edition, signed by Lewis, additionally inscribed, in c. 1951, ‘To Geoffrey Bridson (through whom I am enabled to finish this book) – deepest thanks and friendliest greetings / Wyndham Lewis’.

    £2500

  13. Aristotle: From Antiquity to the Modern Era.

    Preface by Martin J. Gross. Essays by Benjamin Morison and Barbara Scalvini.

    Lewes, D. Giles Ltd for the Martin J. Gross Family Foundation, 2021.

    Aristotle’s influence towers over western philosophy and science. His astonishing range and depth – philosophy and logic, the physical and natural sciences, ethics and politics – make him indisputably the most important intellectual figure in the western tradition before the modern age.

    £30

  14. FORSYTH, William.

    A Treatise on the Culture and Management of Fruit-Trees, in which a new Method of Pruning and Training is fully...

    London, Nichols & Son for T.N. Longman & O. Rees, T. Cadell junior & W. Davies, and J. Debrett, 1802.

    First edition, with Forsyth’s promotion of his controversial remedy for injured trees. As superintendent of the royal gardens of St James’s and Kensington from 1784, Forsyth (1737–1804) developed a ‘plaister’ supposed to remedy diseased timber, an invention met with much enthusiasm by...

    £275

  15. RAMSAY, Allan.

    The Gentle Shepherd, a Scotch Pastoral … attempted in English by Margaret Turner.

    London: Printed for the Author, by T. Bensley; and sold by G. Nicol … and by Mrs. Turner … 1790.

    First edition of this parallel-text translation of Ramsay’s Scots verse drama, a subscriber’s copy from the library of Mary, Lady Vincent, née Chiswell, wife of Sir Francis Vincent (1747–1793), resident consul at Venice.

    £600

  16. HALE, Matthew, Sir.

    Contemplations moral and divine, in two Parts.

    London, D. Brown, J. Walthoe, J. Sprint, M. Wotton, G. Conyers, and D. Midwinter, 1711.

    An early eighteenth-century edition of Hale’s Contemplations in attractive contemporary English morocco. Though first and foremost a jurist, judge, and Commonwealth parliamentarian, Matthew Hale (1609–1676) wrote widely and extensively on other subjects: his Contemplations, first...

    £450

  17. GASPAROLI, Carlo Maria.

    Dialectica sive manuductio ad logicam dictata a R. P. Bar. De Somere. Scripta a me Car. Mar. Gasparoli....

    Antwerp, 1753.

    A handsome manuscript comprising a thorough course in logic and dialectic, executed by a student at the Jesuit college in Antwerp, and illustrated with an extraordinary decorative programme inspired by printed emblems.

    £4750

  18. MYERS, Robin, Michael HARRIS, and Giles MANDELBROTE (eds).

    Lives in Book History: Changing Contours of Research over...

    Leicester, Garendon Press, 2022.

    ‘This volume has grown out of one event in a long series of annual conferences on book-trade history – held to mark the fortieth conference in 2018. For this we had asked nine well-known book historians to give a retrospective review of their field, be it manuscripts, incunabula, book binding, and...

    £35

  19. HOOKER, Joseph Dalton. 

    Himalayan Journals: Notes of a Naturalist in Bengal, the Sikkim and Nepal Himalayas, the Khasia Mountains...

    London, John Murray, 1855. 

    Second edition of a classic of Himalayan travel literature in the early years of Himalayan exploration, by the celebrated botanist Joseph Dalton Hooker (1817–1911). 

    £300

  20. 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...

    £175