Rare Books &c. at Auction This Week

Image: Christie's

Fanfare binding on the Hours of Anne de Neufville, offered at Christie’s this week in the sale of the collection of Elaine and Alexandre Rosenberg.

Here are the auctions I’ll be watching this week:

A 53-lot online sale of Fine Printed and Manuscript Americana at Christie's New York ends on Wednesday, April 22. Expected to lead the way is the Goodspeed–Sang–Streeter copy of a July 1776 Declaration of Independence broadside printed by Robert Luist Fowle at Exeter, NH. Just ten copies of this broadside printing are known, and this copy is estimated at $700,000–900,000. A sammelband of sixteen early American almanacs collected by John Blakey, including the 1758 Poor Richard’s Almanac, is estimated at $300,000–500,000. The first public printing of the U.S. Constitution, in Dunlap & Claypoole’s Pennsylvania Packet, could sell for $120,000–180,000. Crèvecoeur’s own copy of Letters From An American Farmer (1782), with the author’s annotations and a lined-through inscription to Benjamin Franklin, is estimated at $70,000–90,000.

At PBA Galleries on Wednesday afternoon, 238 lots of Comic Books, with bidding for most lots opening at $10.

Courtesy of Christie's

On Thursday at Christie’s New York, Illuminated Manuscripts and Early Printed Books from the Collection of Elaine and Alexandre Rosenberg. The 209 lots include a mid-fifteenth-century book of hours illuminated by the Master of the Paris Bartholomeus Anglicus once in the collections of the 4th Earl of Ashburnham, Henry Yates Thompson, Charles Fairfax Murray, and Sir Alfred Chester Beatty. It is estimated at $1.5–2.5 million. The Hours of Anne de Neufville, c.1430, by the Bedford Master, could sell for $1–1.5 million. This volume is in a sixteenth-century fanfare binding. A flashy c.1525 Latin book of hours by the Master of Jean de Mauléon of the Bellemare group is estimated at $800,000–1,200,000. Among the early printed books, the 1484–85 Florence edition of Plato largely printed by the nuns of San Jacopo di Ripoli rates the top estimate, at $200,000–400,000. This is the first complete edition of Plato in any language: the Latin translation of Marsilio Ficino.

New England Book Auctions is selling selections and shelf lots from Madeleine L’Engle’s library, with sales ending on April 20, 22, and 27. Volumes from L’Engle’s library are indicated.