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

Welcome to our March Newsletter.

We will be issuing a digital catalogue to coincide with Women's Day on March 8th and we will be setting up displays in the shop to compliment this. If you can't wait until then please contact Oliver for an advance copy.

A listing of Detective and Spy Novels is also available here.

Bawden Just into stock is a new book about Edward Bawden.
Click here to see the other Bawden pieces that we can offer at the moment


The end of the month sees the start of the Jewish Passover. We are pleased to be able to offer three different copies of the Ben Shahn illustrated Haggadah

Tale Of Two Cities

We were amused to read the following from Richard Osman:

Andy Cheyne of the Pointless question gang, just told me that Dicken’s ‘A Tale Of Two Cities’ was first serialised in two local newspapers.
“It was the Bicester Times, it was The Worcester Times”

Here's a rather nice copy we have in stock.

We are proud to share news of our colleague Stephen's new art installation:

Children's & Illustrated
Contact Rosie for more details.

Shortly to arrive in the Children's & Illustrated book department is a substantial, and almost complete, collection of first editions in Reverend Awdry's famous Railway Series, which made a celebrity of Thomas the Tank Engine. In the collection we will also be offering the scarce cut-out model books in exemplary condition. Please contact Rosie for more information.

We have also recently received into stock one of our favourite Folio Society titles, the magnificent 2009 edition of the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám with an original signed etching, together with wonderful mounted coloured plates by the Thai-born artist Niroot Puttapipat:


FITZGERALD, Edward (translator). Niroot PUTTAPIPAT (illustrator). The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám. London; The Folio Society. 2009


Folio. Finely hand-bound in half cream vellum, with vellum corner tips, over dark blue boards, the upper cover pictorially and lavishly blocked in metallic golds and copper to a design of peacocks, the spine exquisitely hand-lettered in Islamic script in 22-carat gold by Stephen Raw, top edge gilt, others uncut, with pictorial free endpapers and original blue silk ribbon bookmark, bound by The Fine Book Bindery and preserved in a handsome dark blue cloth-covered slipcase with gilt lettering label to spine; pp. [viii] + 216 + [iii], printed on fine Cordier wove paper; strikingly and beautifully illustrated with 16 large coloured plates by Puttapipat mounted-at-large within decorative panels together with other decorations, quatrain-headings, and vignettes in the text, alongside a fine original etching hand-printed on mould-made paper, which is signed and numbered by the artist, mounted within a floral gilt border on heavy blue Marcato Nettuno stock, and bound before the title; a fine copy presented in an equally fine slipcase.


First edition illustrated thus, limited to only 1,000 numbered copies (in commerce) with an original signed etching by the artist. This sumptuous edition was produced by the Folio Society to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the first edition of Edward Fitzgerald's translation of The Rubáiyát (1859) and very rapidly sold out. It has since proved very difficult to locate. The text for this version follows that of the first edition, with only minor emendations, and contains a 10-page introduction by the author A.S. Byatt.

Natural History & Science
Contact Chris for more details.

The Pathology of Herpes Zoster and its bearing on sensory localization. HEAD, Henry. The Pathology of Herpes Zoster and its bearing on sensory localization.

The Neurological Society of London. 1900. 8vo. Contemporary green cloth; very good. Provenance: front pastedown with bookplate of E.G. Graham-Little, an eminent dermatologist.
First edition, scarce. Sir Henry Head (1861-1940) was a pioneering neurologist specialising in the somatosensory system. In this important paper, written with A.W. Campbell, he was able, by investigating the skin irritations caused by Herpes Zoster, to chart the distribution of fibres originating from the cells of each ganglion and reaching the corresponding parts of the spinal cord.
This paper started him on his important investigations of the physiological basis of sensation which eventually led to his treatment of patients with brain injuries during the First World War and a friendship with the wounded poet Siegfried Sassoon … more …

Education and the Social Order. RUSSELL, Bertrand. Education and the Social Order.

George Allen & Unwin Ltd. 1932. 8vo. Original cloth and wrapper; very good.
First edition in rare dustwrapper. This is one of Russell's most politically controversial works, espousing the idea that modern education is based on maintaining the status quo of a society based on property ownership and is, therefore, flawed, divisive and unjust … more …

La Physique Occulte VALLEMONT, Pierre Le Lorrain de La Physique Occulte, ou traite de la Baguette Divinatoire, et de son utilité pur la découverte des sources d'eau, des miniéres, des tresors cachez, des voleurs & des meurtriers fugitif. Avec des Principes qui expliquent les phenoménes les plus obscurs de la Nature.

Paris: Jean Boudot. 1709. 12mo. Contemporary full brown morocco; very good. Provenance: front pastedown with bookplate of Edward Andrade (1887-1971), British physicist and poet.
Second French edition. This is the first French work on the divining rod, detailing how can help in the discovery of water, mines, treasure chests, thieves and murderers on the run. Illustrated with some attractive engravings of divining techniques as well as scientific instruments and astrological charts … more …

Cybernetics WIENER, Norbert. Cybernetics or Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine

New York. The Technology Press. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 1948 8vo; previous owner's inscription to front pastedown, price-clipped, otherwise near fine.
First edition. Norbert Wiener (1894 - 1964) was the founder of the discipline of cybernetics, the study of regulatory systems that has had profound implications for studies of both physical and mechanical processes. The idea grew from Wiener's work on the automatic firing of anti-aircraft guns at MIT during the war, observing the way that feedback affects a closed system loop … more …

Prints Department
Contact Richard for more details.

Print of the month
Characters of Romance
Artist: NICHOLSON, William (1872-1949)..
Title: Characters of Romance.
Description: Complete set of sixteen framed original lithographs in colours as published in "Characters of Romance."
Date: 1900.
Size: 500 x 400 mm.
Price: £2,500

Poster of the month
Liquoristerie de Provence, Versinthe aux plantes d'absinthe
Artist: SOMMER, Philippe.
Title: Liquoristerie de Provence, Versinthe aux plantes d'absinthe.
Description: Original lithograph with colour out of an edition limited to 550, with printers stamp, signed by the artist in silver pen lower left corner, printed on heavyweight paper in Paris. Sommer is a French artist who originally trained as an Architect before becoming one of the leading paper restorers in Paris. He has worked on the restoration of important posters by Toulouse-Lautrec amongst others.
Date: 2000.
Size: 1000 x 700 mm.
Price: £300

Please see website for other posters we have by this artist.

Map of the month
Battle of Maestricht
Artist: James Basire.
Title: Battle of Maestricht.
Description: Original engraving for Mr Tindal's continuation of Mr Rapin's "History of England."
Date: 1740.
Size: 390 x 490 mm.
Price: £125

Travel Department
Contact Georg for more details.

This month's meandering journey compiled by the Travel Department starts with a cornerstone of every Kuwait collection, and sought after modern classic on the history and topography of the Arabian Peninsula. Next stop: Cairo - then quickly rushing to an oasis in the Libyan desert with armoured Rolls Royces, all very stylishly done. The next book we are introducing is a true first, on an extremely remote island and as rare as visitors there. And to get there you need ships and they need commanders and that is what the next book, a very special association copy, is about. We had an island already, and now it is time for some peninsula, the Iberian Peninsula, to be precise, with a privately printed volume of letters by an a colleague of Wellington; an association copy as well. We conclude this journey in the South of France (I wish we could, in these Arctic temperatures we are having in London at the moment) with a fine and artistic American book production. No need to say it is signed by the artist.

Kuwait and her Neighbours. DICKSON, H.R.P. Kuwait and her Neighbours.

London, George Allen & Unwin Ltd., [1956]. 8vo; a very good copy; provenance: presented to Miss Leys by the staff and pupils of the Anglo-American School in Ahmadi, Kuwait, with calligraphic presentation inscription on the school's stationery, mounted on front fly-leaf.
First edition. Dickson's own military and political experiences in the Near and Middle East, as well as friendships with such men as Ibn Sa'ud, provided the background for both this work and his other classic, The Arab of the Desert … more …

From Cairo to Siwa Across the Libyan Desert With Armoured Cars DUN , Major T.I. From Cairo to Siwa Across the Libyan Desert With Armoured Cars … A Narrative followed by illuminated Pages of the History and Customs of Siwa Oasis; A Narrative Followed by Illuminated Pages of the History and Customs of the Inhabitants of That Country … Foreword by Field Marshal Sir William Birdwood, Bt.

Cairo, E. & R. Schindler, and John Smith & Son., Ltd., [c. 1935]. Folio. Original vellum-backed boards, the boards decorated by the author in an elaborate desert design on gold-paper, photographic frontispiece on gold paper, folding lithographed map, delineating the route in red, a multi-coloured lithographed "street map", seen from above, 2 mounted photographic plates on gold and silver paper, many other photographic illustrations of the British presence in and outside Cairo, and on the journey; one metallic plate with light oxidation, far less dramatic than usually the case; a near-fine copy.
Second edition of an extraordinary book production documenting an eccentric reconnaissance across the Western Egyptian and Libyan desert with armoured Rolls Royce cars. The book design is outstanding and several Egyptian artists from the School of Applied Art in Cairo were employed, alongside British designers. Siwa oasis is one of the most interesting places in the Western Desert, as it is mostly populated by Berbers, and same sex marriages and homosexuality are traditionally accepted.
We handled the title a number of times and never had such a nice copy, a variant not listed in the colophon … more …

A Description of the Island of St. Helena [DUNCAN, Francis]. A Description of the Island of St. Helena; Containing Observations On Its Singular Structure and Formation and an Account of Its Climate, Natural History, and Inhabitants.

London, R. Phillips, 1805. Small 8vo.
Very rare first edition of this early and anonymous monograph on the South Atlantic Island, attributed to Francis Duncan, M. D., by Philip Gosse in his St. Helena, 1502-1938 (p. 434).
'There is no separate account of this extraordinary island, so important and so interesting to navigators to and from the East, this will be to many a very acceptable manual' The British Critic, Volume 26, of 1805. … more …

Celebrated Naval Commanders LOCKER, Edward Hawke. Memoirs of Celebrated Naval Commanders, Illustrated By Engravings from the Original Pictures in the Naval Gallery of Greenwich Hospital.

[London, Shakspeare Press] for Harding and Lepard, 1832. Royal 8vo. Contemporary calf, rebacked, black morocco lettering piece; 20 finely engraved portraits and naval battle scenes;two additional portraits (not called for in the list of contents; Nelson and John Jervis, each with 10 pages of text); tiny paperflaw to fly-leaf; the author's own copy with presentation inscription, dated 1834, on title-page, Locker's engraved armorial bookplate inside front cover; on p. 30 of the entry on the author's father, manuscript footnote in the author's hand; later bookplate of the Conservative MP William Garnett (1818-1873) of Bleasdale, Lancashire on front paste-down, ownership inscription by one Shackleton, dated 1923, on opposite fly-leaf.
Scarce first edition of this beautifully produced history of the Navy and a documentation of the beginnings of the Painted Hall in the Royal Naval Hospital in Greenwich … more …

Pakenham Letters 1800 to 1815. PAKENHAM, Sir Edward Michael. Pakenham Letters 1800 to 1815.

[London], Privately printed, John and Edward Bumpus, 1914. 4t. Original red cloth-backed boards; partly unopened and uncut; internally very clean and fresh; provenance: ALS by a relative of Thomas Pakenham, 5th Earl of Longford (1864-1915), the editor of this book, tipped in on preface leaf, dated 1919 accompanying the book sent to the Sir Thomas Moore Library in Shorncliffe, Kent (their bookplate and shelfmark).
Extremely rare first edition of primary sources of one of Wellington's favourite commanders.
This volume, which is not mentioned as a source in the Oxford Dictionary of Biography unites letters by Pakenham from the expedition to the West Indies and the Peninsular War … more …

French Riviera Villages. RATHBONE, Augusta (artist), and Juliet THOMPSON (photographer) and Virginia THOMPSON (author). French Riviera Villages.

New York, Mitchell Kennerly, 1938. Small folio. 12 reproductions of colour etchings, 'all done by hand' and 60 photographic half-tone illustrations; a very good copy, signed presentation inscription by Augusta Rathbone for Eleanor Fisk, dated 1951 to initial blank.
First edition, one of 1000 copies printed. This is an artistically outstanding book on the French Riviera, with masterful colour plates by the Californian-born artist and printmaker Augusta Rathbone (1897-1990). … more …

Henry Sotheran Ltd
2 Sackville Street
London W1S 3DP
Telephone: 020 7439 6151
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