home latest about ordering links


Mr. Porny
French master at Eton College

The Elements of Heraldry,
The Definition, Origin and Historical Account of that ancient, useful and entertaining Science
The divers Sorts of Coats-of-arms in use; with their essential and integral Parts displayed separately
The several Marks whereby Bearers of the same Coat-of-arms are distinguished from each other.
The different Kinds of Tinctures, Charges, and Ornaments used for Coats-of-arms.
The Laws of Heraldry; practical Directions for Marshalling Coats-of-arms,
and the Order of Precedence.
The Hatchments so clearly described, that the Branch and Title,
the Deceased was of, may be readily known.
With several fine Cuts, and twenty-four Copper-Plates, containing above five hundred different examples of Escutcheons, Arms, &c. And interspersed with the natural History, and allegorical Signification of the several Species of Birds, Beasts, Fishes, Vegetables, &c. comprised in this treatise
To Which is Annexed,
A Dictionary of the Technical Terms made use of in Heraldry

Second, and Greatly Enlarged, Edition
Publisher:T. Carnan and F. Newbery, Junior, 1777, third edition, corrected. Bound in contemporary leather with titles in gilt on a red spine label.
The book is in good condition with losses to the head and foot of the spine leather, corners bumped with loss to the leather, both hinges cracked, the front hinge with repair. Occasional light foxing spots, mainly clean, tightly bound. The bookplate of Maitland J Burnett is on the front endpaper. He was a philatelist, regarded as one of the founding fathers of philately, and editor of the Philatelic Record from 1879 for seven years.
Illustrated with a frontispiece and 24 engravings, as called for.
21cm, 8.25 inches, tall, xxiv, 272 pages, plus a 70-page Dictionary of Technical Terms.



The Secrets of
Conjuring and Magic
How to become a Wizard

Translated and edited, with notes, by
Professor Hoffmann

Publisher: George Routledge and Sons, 1878, first edition. Bound in blue cloth with titles and decorations in gilt and black on the spine and top board. Good plus condition, with spine rubbed, corners bumped. Slight lean, and a water stain to the endpapers and the frontispiece. The closed page edges are slightly marked, but the text block is otherwise unaffected. There is a slight scatter of foxing to the title page, one or two isolated light marks to pages, and there are some pencil sketches of a design for some sort of illusion involving mirrors on the final blank page. Otherwise clean. Illustrations within the text.
Octavo, 19.5cm,  7.75 inches, tall, 373 pages, plus 6-page publisher's catalogue.


Lorenzo (Baltasar) Gracian

The Critick

Written Originally in Spanish
by Lorenzo Gracian
One of the Best Wits of Spain,
And Translated into English by Paul Rycaut Esq.

Publisher: Henry Brome, 1681, first edition in English. Very good condition, rebound in black leather with the original title label laid on to the spine. All edges gilt, age dulled, occasional marks, mainly to the top margin, marginalia throughout in a 17th century hand, probably that of Robert Bishop, whose name is at the top of the title page.  He has also supplied an interesting handwritten index over the final two blank pages. Pages 15 to 50 have a light water stain. Otherwise clean and tight in its binding.
The pages have been slightly mis-numbered in the printing, running from page 1 to page 208, then being numbered 195 to 257.  All 271 pages are present and correct.
Lorenzo Gracian was the pen name of Baltasar Gracian (1601-1658), a Jesuit and writer, and The Critick is his masterpiece, compared favourably with the work of Cervantes. This translation by Paul Rycaut, himself an interesting man, is quite rare.

Octavo, 18.8cm, almost 7.5 inches, tall, title, 14 pages prelims, 271 pages.


Arthur P. Luff

Text-Book of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology

Publisher: Longmans, Green & Co., 1895, first edition. Two volumes bound in dark brown cloth with titles in gilt on the spines.  The books are in very good condition, with light rubbing to the cloth. Small labels of Henry Kimpton, Medical Bookseller, on the endpapers, light scattered foxing to the closed page edges, and intermittently throughout volume one, less frequent in volume two. Both text blocks slightly uneven, but no pages are loose.  Owner name in each volume, about two or three small pencil annotations. Illustrated with a full-colour frontispiece of Blood Spectra and twelve monochrome plates of poisonous plants in volume one, and with illustrations in the text in both volumes. Rare.
Arthur Pearson Luff (1855-1938) was a British physician and forensic chemist. He is considered one of the founders of 20th century forensic medicine. These books are a fascinating resource for anyone interested in the forensics of the 19th and early 20th centuries.
21.7cm, about 8.1 inches tall, Vol I. xii, 416 pages; Vol. II, viii, illustration index, 360 pages, plus a 16 page publisher's catalogue dated November 1895.


Lewis Carroll

The Hunting of the Snark
An Agony in Eight Fits

Publisher: Macmillan & Co., 1897. Bound in the publisher's red cloth with titles in gilt on the spine and decorations in gilt on both boards.  All edges gilt, black endpapers. Good plus condition, spine slightly rubbed, gilt bright on both boards, but the cloth a little faded in places. Label of the British Red Cross Society & Order of St. John Hospital Library on the front endpaper, and also a small binder's label. The tissue guard over the frontispiece is lightly foxed, and there are occasional marks and some foxing scatters throughout, mainly clean. Frontispiece and nine other illustrations by Henry Holiday.
19cm, 7.5 inches tall, 83 pages.


George Colman, David Garrick and others

Four Plays

As Performed at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane
The Clandestine Marriage
The Earl of Warwick
The Minor
The Double Mistake

This is a book of four plays bound in half leather over marbled boards with red leather title label on the spine.  The book is in good plus condition, with a rubbed but sound binding.  Occasional scattered foxing, occasional marks and toning to pages, mainly at the beginning and end of the plays where they would have been least protected in paper covers. There is one owner inscription dated 1767 'Ann Robinson's', and her name appears on the first page of The Double Mistake. These plays would have originally been sold in paper covers separately, at the price of one shilling and sixpence each and this lady would have had them bound together.
The contents are: The Clandestine Marriage by George Colman and David Garrick, printed for T. Becket et al, 1766, third edition. half title, title, advertisement, prologue written by Mr. Garrick, Dramatis Personae, 90 pages; The Earl of Warwick, a Tragedy, no author credited, but with an epilogue written by David Garrick, printed for T Davies et al 1766 third edition. Title page, Advertisement, Prologue (written by George Colman) Dramatis Personae, 71 pages, Epilogue written by David Garrick; The Minor, a Comedy, Printed and Sold by J. Coote et al, 1761, fifth edition. Frontispiece,iv, 90 pages; The Double Mistake, A Comedy, printed for J. Almon et al 1766, second edition, corrected, edition. Title page, prologue, 78 pages, 2 page epilogue.
21cm, 8.25 inches tall, plays individually paginated as above.



The Magician's handbook

A Complete Encyclopaedia of the Magic Art for Professional and Amateur Entertainers.

Publisher: Marshall & Brookes and Dawbarn & Ward, 1901 first edition. Bound in the publisher's green cloth with titles in black on the spine and top board and vignette of magician on top board. Advertising endpapers.
The book is in good condition with a rubbed and soiled binding. Stamped number and ownership stamps of R.C Ritson on the front endpapers, and repeated similar ownership stamps throughout the book.  Light scattered foxing to the endpapers, frontispiece and title page, and occasional light marks throughout. Mainly clean.
Selbit was a stage magician himself, first to perform the 'Sawing the Lady in half' trick before an audience.  This lovely book contains sections entitled The Art of Juggling, New Miscellaneous magical effects; The Tricks and Illusions of Modern Magicians with photographs and memoirs of the contributors; Tricks and Illusions; and New Illusions and Black Magic. One of the 'Modern Magicians' is W.C Fields, who began his career as a comedy juggler.
The book is illustrated throughout with line drawings and photographs of various performers.
This first edition is quite uncommon.
22 cm, 8.5 inches, tall, viii, 188 pages, plus 10 pages of advertisements.


Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

The History of The Ingenious Gentleman
Don Quixote of La Mancha

Translated from the Spanish by P.A. Motteux
Illustrated by Adolphe Lalauze

Publisher: William Paterson, 1879, 1880, 1882, 1884, first editions thus. Four volumes uniformly bound in half green leather (probably 20th century bindings) with raised bands and gilt titles to the spines, marbled boards, all edges gilt. Illustrated with 37 beautiful etchings.
The books are in very good condition.  The leather of the spines is worn and bumped in places, and the front hinge of Vol. 3 has a short crack at the top, while Vol. 4 has short cracks at the top of the front hing and at the bottom of the back hinge. All boards are securely attached. Vol. 1 has occasional isolated spots. Vol. 2  has foxed frontispiece and title pages, otherwise a very occasional light isolated spot, last page lightly toned. Vol. 3 has a missing tissue guard for the frontispiece, and final page lightly toned. Vol. 4 has foxing to the frontispiece and title page and the other plates and their facing pages are lightly toned due to the tissue guards, final page lightly toned. Occasionally in all the volumes there is some light offsetting from the plates in spite of the tissue guards. The books are all tightly bound with bright gilt edges and, except for the noted instances, are clean and bright, and all tightly bound.
A beautiful set with very fine illustrations.
23.5cm, 9.25 inches, tall. Vol. 1, xlii, 445 pages; Vol. 2, viii, 484 pages; Vol. 3, x, 512 pages, Vol. 4, ix, 508 pages.


William Berry

An Introduction to Heraldry

Containing the Rudiments of the Science in General and Other Necessary Particulars Connected with the Subject

Publisher: T. Egerton, 1810, first edition.  Bound in half brown leather over marbled boards. Good plus condition, with new spine leather, with the original gilt titles laid on, corners bumped, some marks and scuffs to the original marbled paper on the boards.  One owner name in pencil on the front free endpaper 'E. Sabin, Wardington', and a small area of worming to the lower corner running from the endpapers to page 14, diminishing as it goes.  The plates bound in at the end of the book have a light water stain, and occasional light foxing.  The text block has an occasional light mark, and a couple of instances of a small marginal mark in pencil, otherwise clean and bright and tightly bound.
The book is illustrated with a folding table 'Paradigm of the Tinctures', and 12 engraved plates, as called for.
22 cm, 8.7 inches, tall, 158 pages, plus plates.


Sir David Brewster

The History of Free Masonry

Drawn From Authentic Sources of Information;
With an Account Of The
Grand Lodge of Scotland,
From its Institution in 1763, to the Present Time,
Compiled from the Records;
And an Appendix of Original Papers

Publisher: Alexander Lawrie, 1804, first edition.  Bound in half leather over marbled boards. Good plus condition, with a new spine and the original title label laid on. Marbled paper scuffed, board edges rubbed, board corners bumped and worn. One owner name on the front endpaper, and another on the title page. Some pages lightly age-toned, occasional light foxing and other isolated marks, some light pencil marks, tightly bound and mainly clean.
A very interesting early history of freemasonry from its origins, claimed to be in ancient Egypt, to the early 19th century, followed by a detailed History of the Grand Lodge in Scotland. An uncommon book.
21.5cm, 8.5 inches, tall, xx,  pages 1-340 (actually 342 pages, as page numbers 146 and 147 occur twice through printer's error. The pages are misnumbered, not duplicated.)


Edwin Sachs

Sleight of Hand:
A Practical Manual of Legerdemain

For Amateurs and Others.
Second, and Greatly Enlarged, Edition

Publisher: L. Upcott Gill, 1885, second, enlarged edition. Bound in the publisher's blue-green cloth with titles and vingettes on the spine and top board, floral endpapers.
The book is in very good condition with corners and spine ends bumped and a little rubbing to the cloth over the hinges. One owner name on the ffep, dated 1888. Final text page excised, replaced in facsimile. On the recto of the back free endpaper is a small pencil drawing of a bundled up child drinking from a beaker. Occasional light foxing, mainly clean and bright. 
Illustrated with engravings within the text
20.3cm, 8 inches, tall, 408 pages, plus a 16 page publisher's catalogue, plus a further 8 pages of advertisements



Jonathan Swift

Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World
by Lemuel Gulliver

First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of several Ships.
Illustrated with Upwards of Four Hundred Wood-Engravings
From Designs by Grandville.
With Copious Notes, A Life of the Author and an Essay on Satirical Fiction by W.C. Taylo
Publisher: Hayward and Moore, 1840, first printing of this edition.  Bound in half maroon leather over decorative paper covered boards with endpapers matching. All edges gilt. Titles and decorations in gilt on the spine. Very good condition, professionally repaired some time ago, with the original spine leather laid onto the new spine, and the old marbled papers replaced with decorative paper, and a window cut out of the front pastedown to show the heraldic bookplate of William Robertson.  The arms on the bookplate are those of the Robertsons of Kindeace, with three wolves on the shield and a wild man in chains below, symbolic of acts undertaken by the clan.  The text block is very slightly uneven, but tightly bound.  Occasional light marks here and there throughout, but mainly clean.
This is a beautiful illustrated edition of Gulliver's Travels, with hundreds of wood engravings within the text throughout.

Large octavo, 23.5 cm, 9.25 inches, tall, 16 pp prelims, lx pp biography and essay, 508 pages, complete (page 487 is mis-numbered 488).


Washington Irving/Arthur Rackham

Rip Van Winkle
Publisher: William Heinemann, 1905, first trade edition, second impression, two months after the first.  Publisher's green cloth gilt, all edges dark green.  Very good condition with lightly bumped corners and head and foot of spine, and a repaired pull to the top of the spine. One owner bookplate on the endpaper.  Half title and last two pages of text foxed, lighter foxing to the titles page and scattered variable foxing throughout the text pages. Some slight scattered foxing to a few tissue guards, not affecting the plates. Plates all present and bright and clean, in very good condition.
The book is illustrated with a frontispiece and 50 other tipped in plates, all mounted on dark green card stock, all with captioned tissue guards.
25.7 cm, 10 inches, tall, viii, 62 text pages, plates bound in after the text.


George Tattersall

The Pictorial Gallery of English Race Horses

Portraits of all the Winners of the Derby,
Oaks and St. Leger Stakes, During the Last Twenty Years
And a History of the Principal Operations of the Turf

Publisher: Henry G. Bohn, 1850 first edition. bound in half leather over marbled boards. Very good condition, with the spine leather replaced, bumped corners and board edges, light scuffing to hte marbled paper.  One gift inscription on the endpaper to John Tattersall Brewer, possibly a descendant of the author.  Occasional light marks to pages and plates, a very few pages adjacent to plats with light offsetting and scattered foxing.  A very few plates have a small triangle of light waterstain to the lower corner of their fore edges, and one plate has a small loss to the same area. Two plates have repair to their attachments. One plate and one leaf of text, Mr Thornhill and pp15-16, have been misbound between pages 246 and 247. Page 386 is misnumbered 336. Mainly clean and in very good condition.
The book is illustrated with ninety-one engravings, 71 of these being plates, mainly portraits of racehorses, but also a few of characters of the turf, and the rest engravings within the text.  Ninety of these engravings are listed in the  List of Illustrations, while the final plate 'Rhedycinal Winner of the Oaks 1850' is not listed, and in the accompanying text the horse is actually named as Rhedycina. Presumably this plate and its entry were last minute additions, since the race occurred in the year of publication.
Each portrait is accompanied with text, in which the races and events of the day are described.Large octavo, 25.3 cm tall (10 inches), viii, 386 pages.



Guyon Richards

The Chain of Life

Publisher: John Bale, Sons & Danielsson Ltd., 1934 first edition, first printing. Bound in green cloth, with titles on the spine and top board in gilt.  The book is in very good condition, with dulled gilt, lightly bumped corners, and a very occasional small isolated spot to pages and three leaves with creased corners. Endpapers tanned and one owner inscription on the ffep, otherwise clean and bright.

This book concerns the author's study of Abrams' work on radiesthesia, and his own modifications of the Abrams method.  Illustrated with some diagrams.

Octavo, 21.9 cm , a little over 8.5 inches, tall, xiii, 215 pages, plus 2 pages publisher's advertisements.


E.V. Lucas

The Book of Shops

Verses by Edward Verrall Lucas
Illustrated by Francis D. Bedford

Publisher: Grant Richards, undated but 1899, first edition. Large format bound in pictorial paper covered boards with brown cloth spine. Titles on spine in gilt.
The book is in good plus condition, with worn boards, gilt on spine slightly rubbed, fresh endpapers.  The half title has handling marks and a worn fore-edge which has been reinforced on the verso with Japanese tissue.The title page has creases and several repaired short closed tears.  In the rest of the book there are occasional light handling marks, otherwise clean.
The book is illustrated on the half title, title and contents pages, and has 24 full colour plates, each with accompanying verse with decorative line-drawn borders.
A very beautiful book, and rare in the first edition.
23 cm tall by 31.5 cm wide (9 by 12.5 inches). Complete.


Jonathan Swift

The Tale of a Tub

For the Universal Improvement of Mankind
to Which is Added
An Account of a Battle
Between the Ancient and Modern Books
In St. James's Library

Publisher: Thomas Tegg, 1811, first edition thus. Bound in later half leather by Bayntun with titles in gilt on a red spine label, and decorations in gilt on the spine, marbled boards, all edges gilt.
The book is in very good condition, with a little rubbing to the binding, one bookplate on the front endpaper, and signs of removal of another on the back endpaper. The plates are all present and in very good condition; the frontispiece is slightly toned and lightly spotted and the other plates have a few isolated spots, but are mainly clean (see photos). The text block is tightly bound and, except for a very occasional light spot, is clean and bright.
A very attractive copy of Swift's masterly satire.
Octavo, 19.7cm tall (7.75 inches), 322 pages.



Ceremonies of a Japanese Marriage
Publisher: Tamamura, photographer, c.1906.  Bound in a Japanese binding of grey-green silk covered boards tied with brick red silk ribbons.  The binding has some wear and losses, but is basically sound.  The title page of the book has hand-painted images of a crane and a turtle, both symbols of longevity.  There follow 19 hand coloured plates, each with a tissue guard.  There is occasional light creasing to the tissue guards, and an occasional light mark to the plates, but the book is mainly clean and bright.
This book was issued a number of times, but this is an early issue.  Later issues, after 1916,  have an extra plate.  That the book was produced for the foreign market is evident not only in the English captions to the plates, but also in the fact that the book reads in the Western direction, not the Japanese.
A very nice copy of a delightful book.
18.3cm tall by 25.7cm wide (a little more than 7 by 10 inches). Title page, 19 plates, colophon.


Sir John Floyer, Knight

The Sibylline Oracles

Translated from the Best Greek Copies
And Compar'd With The
Sacred Prophecies
Especially with
Daniel and the Revelations,
With so much History as plainly shews, That many of the Sibyls Predictions are exactly fulfill'd
Answers to the Objections
usually made against them.

Publisher: J. Nicholson, 1713, first edition. Bound in full contemorary leather with titles onin gilt on spine label, gilt borders to boards.  Very good condition, with front hinge partialy cracked and rear hinge cracked, with some small losses to the leather in consequence, but both boards still firmly attached. Corners bumped. Text block clean and tightly bound.  On the front endpapers there is a long inscription concerning the number of the Beast and the Antichrist in the Book of Revelation, in an 18th century hand.  On the rear endpaper in an owner name "W. White, Coll Mer Oxon" (Merton College, Oxford)
The Sibilline Oracles are of Judaeo-Christian origin, mixing Greek and Roman Mythology with Judaeo-Christian mythology, and may contain fragments of the Roman Sibylline Books.  They are certainly very concerned with the prophecies in the Book of Revelation.
Octavo, 17.7cm, 7 inches tall, title, 6 pages dedication, xxiv, 336 pages, complete.


Description of Edwin Smith's Model of Jerusalem, As It Is

Illustrative of
The Holy Scriptures
And The Fulfilment
Of Prophecy

Printed by J. Blurton, Sheffield, 1847, first edition. Bound in cloth covered card wraps with title label on the top cover.  The book is in very good condition, probably recased in its original covers, but not recently. The binding has a little fraying around the spine, a few spots, and the title label is creased. There is a little edge wear to the  illustration and key to the model, and an occasional isolated foxing spot here and there, otherwise clean.
An extra folding map of Jerusalem has been bound in, 'Jerusalem and its Environs', published 1825 by L.B. Seeley & Son, and this map has been reinforced with a tissue backing.
This is a very rare survival. Edwin Smith was a Sheffield sculptor who produced three dimensional plaster models of Jerusalem with detailed depictions of the various buildings and the surrounding topography.  This book is essentially an advertisement for these models, or was perhaps provided with the models as it contains a map with the key to the model and descriptions of the noted buildings and locations.  This section is presented as a 17 page general description of Jerusalem, qutie detailed, and is followed by engravings of the models in different sizes with different cases, and their prices.  After this there are three pages of testimonies to the fidelity of the model, then 'Thoughts on Edwin Smith's Model Of Jerusalem', 6 pages by Charlotte Elizabeth, (Charlotte Elizabeth Tonna, who wrote as Charlotte Elizabeth and died in 1846.  A Cabinet Wax Bust of this lady by Edwin Smith is also advertised in the book, modelled from sittings in 1846, just before her death.)  The rest of the book is advertisements and newspaper reviews of the Model of Jerusalem.
Few of these models survive today because of their essential fragility, and this book is equally scarce, providing a small but intimate window into an aspect of the early Victorian world, and a portrait of Jerusalem at that time.
17.5 cm tall (almost 7 inches), 2 maps, 44 pages, complete.