Books and Manuscripts, Medieval to Modern
Online Auction: 2–13 December 2022 • 2:00 PM GMT • London

Books and Manuscripts, Medieval to Modern 2–13 December 2022 • 2:00 PM GMT • London

O ur December auction is led by a consignment of fine books from a private Scottish library which includes an unusually fine copy of the rare first edition of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, as well as Burns’s Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect (Kilmarnock, 1786), the Beckford copy of Cook’s Voyages (1773-88), Robinson Crusoe (1719-20), a binding produced for Mary, Queen of Scots, and other fine books. Another major group within the sale is a collection of love letters recording one of history’s great romances, that of Admiral Nelson and Emma Hamilton, from the collection of the late Jean Kislak.

Sale Contents

Lots 101-144: Fine books and manuscripts from a private Scottish library
Lots 145-165: Property from the Lady Hamilton Collection of Jean Kislak
Lots 166-212: Antiquarian Books and Manuscripts
Lots 214-294: Modern Books, Illustrations, and Artwork, 1800-Present

Auction Highlights

Medieval and Antiquarian


Science and Exploration

Viscount Horatio Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton

The sale includes exceptional pieces from the Lady Hamilton collection of Jean Hart Kislak (1931-2022). Mrs Kislak was fascinated by Emma Hamilton, a woman who through her beauty and strength of character was able to raise herself from poverty and come to play an extraordinary and varied place in history: she was muse to Romney, confidante to Queen Maria Carolina, and lover to Horatio Nelson. Mrs Kislak spent some thirty years assembling an astonishing collection of letters, paintings, and other pieces that trace Emma’s remarkable and turbulent life. Emma Hamilton’s life is of course forever entwined with that of her lover, Lord Nelson. The group of items in the current sale includes remarkable and intimate love letters – including one of the very few surviving letters from Emma to Nelson – and a range of other pieces that trace Emma Hamilton’s life from her arrival in Naples to her lonely and disappointed final years.

Manuscripts and Letters

Illustrations and Artwork

Scottish Literature

Classic Literature

Modern Firsts

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