Highlights

Each year our exhibitors bring rare, beautiful and unusual items for sale. Here are just a few of the exhibitors' highlights you can expect to see at the Fair in 2022!

Notes d'un pilote disparu (1916-1917) "Lieutenant Marc" [VILLARS, Jean Beraud]
$750
Paris : Hachette, 1918. First edition. Small octavo, [x], 224, [4] pp., contemporary gilt lettered quarter green cloth. An attractive copy. Originally published under the nom de guerre ‘Lieutenant Marc’ in 1918, the real author was identified in the 1970's as Jean Beraud Villars. This book was so critical of the French military and aircraft manufacturers (who he alleged supplied inferior aircraft) that Villars could not publish it under his own name. This is the censored and redacted French first edition.
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SHOP SIGNS OF PEKING With 101 splendid hand-coloured illustrations
$5500
By H.K.Fung. Illustrations hand painted. Chinese Painting Association of Peking. Peking. 1931. Oblong folio. Or.cloth-backed brocade boards tied. 18 leaves with 101 hand painted ills. Illustrated signs used by Chinese shopkeepers to advertise trade, each sign in gold, silver & colours and accompanied by a description in English & Chinese. Beautiful, fine and Rare. The signs were useful for a population largely illiterate at the time, though they have now largely disappeared as they are not necessary in a literate society.
Codex Seraphinianus
$6500
The first edition of the ever mysterious Codex Seraphinianus by Italian artist Luigi Serafini (1949-). Possibly an illustrated encyclopaedia of an alternate universe, Serafini has alluded that it is perhaps all just the thoughts of a cat passed through his hand. The Codex is written in an imaginary language and illustrated phantasmagorically throughout. This being the true first edition published in 2 volumes by Italian art publisher Franco Maria Ricci.
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Views in the South Seas from drawings by the late James Webber,
$85000
London : Boydell & Co., 1808. First edition (later issue, as usually found). The plates illustrate romanticised depictions of the landscape and inhabitants encountered on the voyage, including depictions of what is modern-day New Zealand, Tonga, Tahiti and French Polynesia, Indonesia, Macao, Vietnam and Russia. It is considered one of the great colour plate books of the nineteenth century, Davidson writes that 'these views should be added to a collection but they are so seldom available that a collector would be fortunate to obtain a copy'.
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William Jackson Hooker. Exotic Flora...1823-27
$32000
A very fine and attractively bound copy of the first and only edition of one of Hooker's rarest and most beautifully illustrated works; an important work, it includes specimens from Australia described by Robert Brown, colonial botanist Charles Fraser, and Allan Cunningham. A particularly notable inclusion is the Banksia verticillata (no. 96) from western Australia, first noticed at King George Sound by Archibald Menzies on the Vancouver voyage “and brought by him to our gardens in 1794”; this banksia, now considered vulnerable, was later codified by Robert Brown when he returned to the region
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RANDOLPH, Thomas. Poems with the Muses Looking-Glass, and Amyntas: whereunto is added The Jealous Lovers.
$750
Oxford: Printed for F. Bowman by John Crosley, 1668. Fifth Edition with several Additions Corrected and Amended. Small octavo : pp. 4 blank (28) 436, 2 blank : new eps : gilt dentelles with floral motif : polished calf boards with triple gilt ruled border surrounding a floral and foliate border : rebacked with red leather title panel lettered in gilt and the publication year in gilt to tail of spine. Long note in small hand to first blank detailing the purchase of the volume in 1840. (Bookseller inventory #2642)
The Principles of Geology…1830-33
$17500
First edition of this classic by ‘the father of modern geology’, which “has been called the most important scientific book ever... and [which] shook prevailing views of how the earth had been formed" (Cambridge). “One of the key works in the nineteenth century encounters between science and Scripture, Charles Lyell’s Principles of Geology sought to explain the geological state of the modern Earth by considering the long-term effects of observable natural phenomena.
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Sculpture of Rayner Hoff
$2200
SCULPTURE OF RAYNER HOFF. With text by the Earl Beauchamp, Howard Ashton, E.C.Temple Smith and W.Bede Dalley. Syd. Sunnybrook Press. 1934. 4to. Or.cl. Dustjacket. 113pp. tipped-in b/w plates. The dj sl.torn else Fine. 1st ed. Rare. Number 19 of 100 numbered copies signed by Rayner Hoff and all the contributors, including Ernest Shea the printer. The frontispiece is an original coloured woodcut "In Vain the Christian", signed by Rayner Hoff. The fourth book from the Sunnybrook Press, the splendid plates printed by the collotype process.