Henry Sotheran Ltd. Rare Books and Prints 200 Years of Bookselling in London

Welcome to our July newsletter. The builders are now in the shop and the refurbishment is well under way. Don’t forget however that our books are still available via the website and can be retrieved from storage and mailed out as usual.

Declaration of Independence
July 4th marks Independence Day in the USA. To celebrate this we have compiled a chronological list of 50 items (one for each State) of things American from an 1836 Broadside of the Declaration of Independence to a 2017 edition of James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time with photographs by Steve Schapiro. Click here to see this eclectic list on the website, or download here. Any enquiries to Andrew.

Noel & Clark’s History of Tennis

Wimbledon is also just around the corner. Brush up on your tennis history with Noel & Clark’s History of Tennis

4to., 2 volumes in original cloth lettered in gilt on spine. Illustrated with numerous plates and a large folding chart at rear of volume II. Spines slightly sunned otherwise a very good set.
First edition. Supposedly limited to 820 copies, the actual limitation is probably much smaller, as it is rumoured that 100 were pulped in 1929, and perhaps as many as 380 copies were pulped in 1932.

Competition results

Many thanks to all those who submitted answers to the quiz in our Cabinet of Curiosities catalogue. The answer we were looking for was that this was formerly the apothecary from which Branwell Brontë collected his laudanum. We didn’t get any precise replies but several people correctly identified Haworth as the location of the picture. First in, and the winner of the prize, is … G.B. of York

On the death of Jane Austen …

“I was able to close her eyes myself, and it was a great gratification to me to render her those last services. There was nothing convulsed which gave the idea of pain in the look; on the contrary, but for the continual motion of the head she gave one the idea of a beautiful statue, and even now, in her coffin, there is such a sweet, serene air over her countenance as is quite pleasant to contemplate”
(Cassandra Elizabeth Austen, to her niece Miss Fanny Knight, penned on the death of her sister Jane).

Jane Austin This month marks the 200th anniversary of the death of England’s most popular novelist. Jane Austen died on July 18th, 1817, at the age of just 41, in Winchester. She was buried in the north aisle of the city’s cathedral which stands adjacent to the cottage where she spent her last days tended by her devoted sister. Rather sadly her gravestone praises her personal qualities and the endowments of her mind but makes no mention of her literary achievements.

Although she had a limited output, being responsible for just six novels, each is exquisitely crafted, and perfect in form, even the earliest which she wrote as a teenager. She is indisputably one of the country’s greatest writers; some say the finest after Shakespeare. The fact that she was active at the very emergence of the novel as a literary form makes her accomplishments even more remarkable.

Sense and Sensibility “Sense and Sensibility” (1811) was Austen’s first published work, although she began work on it around 1795 when she was just 19. Its first form was in letters with the title “Elinor and Marianne” before she redrafted it as a narrative. We can currently offer from stock one of the finest illustrated editions of this work, with engraved illustrations by Christiana Hammond. It was published in 1899.

Please direct any enquiries to Rosie

Science & Natural History
Contact Chris for more details.
Urformen der Kunst.

BLOSSFELDT, Karl Urformen der Kunst.

Berlin: Verlag Ernst Wasmuth. [1928]. 4to. Original cloth; 120 b&w plates; a little foxing to endpapers, very good.
First edition. This book of close-ups of plants, taken with Blossfeldt's homemade cameras, is a landmark of modernist photography, displaying the sculptural quality of natural forms as well as the finest details of structure. A sculptor and teacher himself, Blossfeldt intended the book as an inspiration for artists and architects … more …

Wunder in der Natur. BLOSSFELDT, Karl Wunder in der Natur.

Leipzig: Pantheon-Verlag für Kunstwissenschaft. 1942. 4to. Original blue cloth, gilt lettering to upper board and spine; pp. [vi], 120 b&w photographic plates, frontispiece portrait of Blossfeldt tipped in; boards a little rubbed, very good.
First edition … more …

The Auricula. ESCOFET. José. The Auricula.

Stephanie Hoppen. 1990. 12 colour plates 52 x 40 cm with title page, subscribers list and two leaves of text by Brenda Hyatt, in original green solander box with gilt label to front; each plate signed and numbered by the artist in pencil; very good.
No. 303 of limited edition of 500 … more …

Brush-work Studies of Flowers, Fruits and Animals

YEATS, Elizabeth Corbet. Brush-work Studies of Flowers, Fruits and Animals for Teachers and Advanced Students.

George Philip & Son. 1898. Oblong 4to. Original green cloth, dark green lettering to boards and spine; 27 mainly coloured plates each with leaf of text except for frontispiece; internally very clean, very good.
First edition. Elizabeth Corbet Yeats (1868 - 1940), known as 'Lolly', was the sister of W.B. Yeats and a member of William Morris's circle … more …

Travel Department
Contact Georg for more details.

Travel items are mysteriously absent this month. We are working on a new Travel Catalogue to be revealed next month.

New Travel Catalogue

Children's Department
Contact Rosie for more details.
Polish Alice

Versions of ‘Alice’ are in abundance in the children’s department. We have just acquired a modest collection, built up over decades, which includes off-beat items such as signed prints and cigarette cards alongside traditional versions of “Wonderland” and “Through The Looking-Glass”. Also among the number are unusual illustrated editions in translation such as a Russian illustrated edition signed by Demurova (the translator), an edition in Serbo-Croat, and one in Polish.

Click here to download descriptions of a few of them

Prints Department
Contact Richard for more details.

Print of the month
Aristolochia Rotunda
Artist: BESLER, Basilius.
Title: .
Description: Aristolochia Rotunda.
Date: 1640.
Size: 480 x 395 mm.
Price: £795

Poster of the month
Artist: ANON.
Title: Othello. "One that loved not wisely but too well...".
Description: Original lithograph with colour, printed in England by Stafford & Co., Ltd., Netherfield, Nottingham and London. Starring Orson Welles.
Date: 1951.
Size: 760 x 1015 mm.
Price: £475

Map of the month
Africa drawn from the best Maps
Artist: JEFFERYS, Thomas.
Title: Africa drawn from the best Maps.
Description: An original engraving.
Date: c.1748.
Size: 250 x 295 mm.
Price: £250
Henry Sotheran Ltd
2 Sackville Street
London W1S 3DP
Telephone: 020 7439 6151
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