Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts including Americana on December 3 On December 5, Christie's is pleased to offer the sale of Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts including Americana, featuring over 290 notable works from the 16th through the 20th centuries.
News-Antique.com - Nov 18,2008 - Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts including Americana
December 5, 2008
New York – On December 5, Christie's is pleased to offer the sale of Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts including Americana, featuring over 290 notable works from the 16th through the 20th centuries. The sale is led by a spectacular panoramic print of the city of Philadelphia, an important notebook of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, a writing desk of Charles Dickens, original artwork from Denslow's Night Before Christmas, and a selection of architectural books with works from Palladio Vitruvius to Frank Lloyd Wright.
Highlighting the auction is a rare, panoramic 1754 engraving by Scull and Heap, "The East Prospect of the City of Philadelphia," from The Episcopal Academy in Newton Square, Pennsylvania (illustrated above- estimate: $250,000-350,000). The four large folio sheets engraved by Gerard Vandergucht, depict the colonial cityscape that includes the bustling docks of Philadelphia viewed from the New Jersey side of the Delaware. The Penn family coat of arms is displayed at the bottom edge, along with key identifying buildings such as Independence Hall, Christ Church, and the University of Pennsylvania.
A poignant and revealing Americana artifact is a collection of political pamphlets annotated and inscribed by John Adams to his son Charles, 1754, (estimate: $50,000-70,000). It is a bound group of four heavily annotated pamphlets on the trials of Irish and Scottish radicals. Four years before Adams signed the Alien and Sedition Acts, he studied these celebrated sedition and treason trials. The pamphlets provide remarkable documentation of Adam's intensifying interest in the problem of seditious speech, radicalism, and dangers to Constitutional government, giving great insight into John Adams as both a political thinker and a father. This collection was featured on the PBS program "History Detectives," Season 6, Episode 3.
Another highlight is the Architectural Books from the Collection of Harold K. Douthit comprised of 51 remarkable books with works including, Albrecht Dürer, Vitruvius Pollio, Mies Van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, Thomas Jefferson, Frank Lloyd Wright, and many others. Highlights include: Dürer's De symmetria partium in rectis formis humanorum corporum, Nuremberg, 1534 (estimate: $20,000-30,000), Palladio's I quattro libri dell' architettura, Venice, 1570, the first collected edition of his work (estimate: $20,000-30,000), Vitruvius's De architectura libri dece, Como, 1521, the first edition in any modern language and Frank Lloyd Wright's Ausgeführte Bauten und Entwürfe, Berlin, 1910 (estimate: $30,000-50,000).
Among the stellar literary highlights is an important autograph notebook of Elizabeth Barrett Browning (estimate: $200,000-300,000), containing some 68 pages of unpublished working manuscripts of 15 poems including a sequence of 9 Sonnets in the Night dated 1839. This original morocco-backed board notebook sold in 1913 as part of the Browning estate has not been seen on the auction market since 1915. Also, a writing desk of Charles Dickens from his bedroom in Gad's Hill Place (estimate: $100,000-150,000) will be offered, along with a fine, inscribed copy of Tale of Two Cities (estimate: $35,000-45,000).
The sale will feature Denslow's Night Before Christmas by William Wallace Denslow (estimate: $60,000-80,000), the famous illustrator