Rare Books &c. at Auction This Week

Image credit: Pierre Bergé & Associés

Pierre Bergé & Associés sells the Bibliothèque d'un Amateur on Tuesday, in 129 lots. A 1523 Ovid in French (Paris: Philippe le Noir) with more than thirty woodcut illustrations rates the top estimate, at ??35,000-45,000. A seventeenth-century manuscript prayer book made for Andrée de Vivonne, Duchesse de La Rochefoucauld could sell for ??30,000-40,000 (pictured).

After a fairly quiet week, we're very much back to business on the auction front. Here are a few things I'll be watching this week:

Alexander Historical Auctions holds its Winter Auction on Monday, February 18, in a whopping 1,120 lots. Among the manuscripts expected to sell well are a June 29, 1861 letter from Stonewall Jackson ($15,000-25,000); the signature of Declaration of Independence Signer Thomas Lynch, Jr., clipped from a volume of Swift ($10,000-15,000); and an Ernest Hemingway letter to an aspiring writer ($8,000-10,000).

At Toovey's on Tuesday, February 19, Antiquarian and Collectors' Books, in 212 lots. Toovey's sells Maps and Prints on Wednesday, too, in a 165-lot sale.

  On Wednesday, Bibliothèque Marc Litzler at Christie's Paris. The 248 lots include Matisse's Jazz (Paris, 1947), estimated at ??200,000-300,000; illustrations from the 1498 Nuremberg edition of Dürer's Apocalypsis (??150,000-200,000); a manuscript book of hours from around 1480 (??60,000-80,000); and a second edition Vesalius (??50,000-70,000).  

PBA Galleries holds a 431-lot sale of Rare Americana, Travel & Exploration, Hawaii, World History, and Cartography on Thursday, February 21. Rating the top estimate is a full set of the first two volumes of Alexander Campbell's Millennial Harbinger (1830-1831), at $10,000-15,000. The third issue of William Stith's history of Virginia (Williamsburg, [1753]), with the bookplate of British politician George Grenville, could fetch $6,000-9,000. A massive 1761 map of Europe with vignettes is estimated at $5,000-8,000. Finally, two Mexican Inquisitorial broadsides about forbidden books, one from 1781 and another from 1803, each are estimated at $3,000-5,000.

Last but not least, Aguttes in Paris sells Livres Anciens & Modernes, Manuscrits & Autographes on Friday, February 22, in 314 lots. A collection of forty-eight letters from artist Francis Picabia to Suzanne Roman is expected to sell for ??30,000-40,000, while a bifolium from a seventeenth-century Italian manuscript maritime atlas of the Mediterranean could fetch ??20,000-25,000. A Debussy music manuscript rates the same estimate.