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Desert Solitaire - Signed - Edward Abbey, Peter Parnall (illustrator)

1968 - McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York - First Edition
A bright signed first edition of Abbey’s powerful work of nature writing and environmental concern, his first book of non-fiction and most famous and defining work. Only 5000 copies of the first edition were printed, it has since sold more than 2,000,000 copies.

Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread. A civilization which destroys what little remains of the wild, the spare, the original, is cutting itself off from its origins and betraying the principle of civilization itself.’

With drawings throughout by Peter Parnell.
 
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Price HK$ 15,000



An Historical, Physiological and Theological Treatise of Spirits, Apparitions, Witchcrafts, and other Magical Practices - Jonh (John) Beaumont, Gent.

1705 - Printed for D. Browne, London - First Edition
With engraved frontispiece by Michael Van der Gucht of ‘An Evil Genius’, ‘Two Good Genii’, and ‘Jews going out in the Moonshine to know their Fortune’.

John Beaumont, a British surgeon and geologist, ‘was a man of considerable reading, of excessive credulity, and a firm believer in supernatural agency. His principal and certainly most curious performance,
An Historical, Physiological, and Theological Treatise of Spirits, Apparitions, Witchcrafts is written in an amusing, gossiping style, and abounds with grotesque tales and illustrations from little-known authors. His personal experience of spirits, good and bad, was long and varied (pages 91-4, 393-7); but he innocently contrives to lessen the effect of his narration by adding that in their frequent visitations “all would disswade me from drinking too freely”’ - Dictionary of National Bibliography. 
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Price HK$ 17,000



Commentaries on the Laws of England. - William Blackstone, Esq. Solicitor General to Her Majesty

1770 - The Clarendon Press, Oxford - Fourth Edition
It Is Better That Ten Persons Escape, Than That One Innocent Suffer.

‘Blackstone's great work on the laws of England is the extreme example of justification of an existing state of affairs by virtue of its history. Until the ‘Commentaries’, the ordinary Englishman had viewed the law as a vast, unintelligible and unfriendly machine; nothing but trouble, even danger, was to be expected from contact with it. Blackstone's great achievement was to popularise the law and the traditions which had influenced its formation.’
Printing and the Mind of Man.

An attractive four volume quarto set [28 x 23 cm] in contemporary full calf binding. With two engraved tables, being the
Table of Consanguinity [Vol. II p.203] and the folding Table of Descents [Vol. II p.240]. 
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Price HK$ 40,000



Selections from the Popular Poetry of The Hindoos - Thomas Duer Broughton [Editor Translator]

1814 - Printed by Whittingham and Rowland for John Martin, London - First Edition
A pretty and scarce first edition of the the first published anthology of Hindi Poets. Internally fine and unopened. 
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Price HK$ 5,000



God's Little Acre - Erskine Caldwell

1933 - The Viking Press, New York - First Edition
Scarce in such a clean bright dust jacket.

Censured by the Georgia Literary Commission, banned in Boston, attacked by the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice, and once led the all-time best-seller list, with more than ten million copies in print.

God's Little Acre chronicles the final decline of a poor white family in rural Georgia. Exhorted by their patriarch Ty Ty, the Waldens ruin their land by digging it up in search of gold. Complex sexual entanglements and betrayals lead to a murder within the family that completes its dissolution. Juxtaposed against the Waldens' obsessive search is the story of Ty Ty's son-in-law, a cotton mill worker in a nearby town who is killed during a strike. 
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Price HK$ 30,000



A Treatise on Cobbett's Corn - William Cobbett

1828 - By William Cobbett, London - First Edition
In 1820 on returning from the United States, were he had fled fearing arrest for his arguably seditious writings, Cobbett established a plant nursery at Kensington, where he trialed a dwarf strain of maize he found growing in a French cottage garden which grew well in England’s shorter summer. To help sell this variety, Cobbett published Treatise on Cobbett’s Corn. Charmingly written, including anecdotes of his travels through America, and the farming techniques and people he encounters there. The title and contents pages are printed on paper made from the husks and stalks of ‘Indian Corn’ (Maize).  
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Price HK$ 2,500



The Morals of Confucius - Confucius

1760 -1780 Circa - Printed for Randal Taylor, London - First Thus
A later 18th century reprint of this work and the first to include the folding frontispiece engraving of Confucius (often missing). First published in 1691 and scarce in any early edition, more so this edition with the engraving. In contemporary binding, and with decorations to title page, six headpieces, and three tailpieces.

Beginning with a ‘
Preface’ introducing this translation and its sources, followed by ‘Part First’ titled ‘Of the Antiquity and Philosophy of the Chinese’, then ‘Part II’ which offers selected translations from the three books, and ends with 80 ‘Maxims’.

‘The great Chinese teacher Confucius (551 BC–479 BC) articulated a philosophy based on the concepts of ren (‘benevolence’ or ‘compassion’) and li (‘ritual’ or ‘propriety’). He hoped to create the ideal, superior man (junzi) and thereby facilitate a just society.

Confucius’s teachings were highly influential across China and large areas of east Asia for almost two millennia before this 1691 work offered English readers their first introduction to his philosophical approach. It provides an account of Confucius’s life and times, as well as 80 of his maxims.

This English-language text is based on a French-language edition published in 1688, which in turn relied on a Latin work of 1687 published in Paris.’ - Marsh’s Library, Dublin.
 
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Price HK$ 21,000



Mating Marriage and the Status of Women - James Corin

1910 - The Walter Scott Publishing Co. Ltd., London and Felling-on-Tyne - First Edition
‘The Object of the present treatise is to consider the development of the relations of the male and the female of the species.’ And onward Corin bravely goes. This rare treatise is still referenced today, and must of been of importance at the time, this copy was owned by the ‘Liberator League’ of Bradford.

Corin summarises his theories in the final chapter as follows:- ‘In the first period the human female rules. She dictates to the male in sexual affairs — this is free mating...

In the second period the male captures foreign females for his use, because his own are too chaste; these foreign females become his slave wives. He courts and mates with females of his own tribe at yearly festivals like Australian corroborees.

In the third period the institution of marriage has become the dominant form . . . so much so that mating unions become regularised as marriages or are condemned as illicit. Of females, wives are more honoured than free mates — in fact the latter become infamous except in a few cases of royal princesses...

In the fourth period the female recognises and revolts against her inferior position; restrictions on dissolution of marriage are relaxed, and by easy divorce, conditions nearly approaching those of free-mating are again evolved...

In the fifth period, social disruption occurs, conquest by a lower type takes place. The male seizes the opportunity to reinstate the fetters of matrimony and to rivet the links more tightly on the female. so that something of the third period is entered into again.’
 
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Price HK$ 1,900



 
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