The sale offers our regular combination of history, English literature, popular culture, children’s books and original book illustrations. The first 22 lots present material from the Law Society mostly on legal and criminal subjects but including works on Longitude (lots 15-17). Our history section includes some exceptional Nelson material (lots 33-42), including a fine extra-illustrated set of Broadley (lot 38), whilst Art and Architecture highlights include a plan of Westminster Bridge by Charles Labelye (lot 60) and the earliest known album of photographs compiled by Julia Margaret Cameron (lot 65). A fine coloured copy of Gerard’s Herball with important early annotations is offered as lot 80.
Literary highlights include a second Shakespeare folio (lot 82), a first edition of Gulliver’s Travels in contemporary calf (lot 85), a presentation copy of Emma (lot 86), a copy of Gaskell’s Life of Charlotte Bronte including six autograph letters by Bronte (lot 91), the autograph manuscript of Colin Dexter’s Last Bus to Woodstock (lot 104), a presentation copy of Hemingway’s in our time (lot 125), Joyce’s Dubliners with a contemporary presentation (lot 129), a volume from Joyce’s own library (lot 130), a copy of Seven Pillars of Wisdom inscribed by Lawrence to E.M. Forster (lot 135), a copy of Nineteen Eight-Four inscribed to Osbert Sitwell (lot 139) and Virginia Woolf’s engagement diaries (lot 145). There is a particularly rich Ian Fleming section including a typescript of Diamonds are Forever (lot 111) and the Walther gun used by Sean Connery in publicity shots for four Bond films (lot 116), while a remarkable series of passionate and thoughtful love letters from Mick Jagger to Marsha Hunt (lot 146) evoke the cultural and social revolution of the summer of 1969.
A number of volumes throughout the sale are bound or boxed by Sangorski and Sutcliffe. These sumptuous bindings are extremely fine examples of the binder’s art.
Children’s books and original illustrations include an inscribed copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone dated the day before publication (lot 178) and an extremely fine J.R.R. Tolkien letter (lot 186). Original illustrations include work by Edmund Dulac (lots 154-155) and E.H. Shepard (lots 157-158 and 183-185).