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The Yellow Book - Aubrey Beardsley

April 1894-April 1897 - Elkin Mathews &, London
A complete, clean and better than normally encountered thirteen volume set of this groundbreaking art nouveau publication, in the publisher’s bright yellow illustrated covers with designs by Aubrey Beardsley. Together with ‘A Selection’ published in 1950 and bound in yellow cloth to match the earlier set. Fourteen volumes in total.

From its initial visually arresting issue, for which Aubrey Beardsley was art editor and for which Max Beerbohm wrote an essay, ‘
A Defence of Cosmetics’, ‘The Yellow Book’ attained immediate notoriety.

Published by John Lane and edited by Henry Harland, ‘
The Yellow Book’ attracted many outstanding writers and artists of the era, such as Arnold Bennett, Charlotte Mew, Henry James, Edmund Gosse, Richard Le Gallienne, and Walter Sickert.

Although dominated by the illustrations of Aubrey Beardsley, and his decadent fin de siècle aura, many other distinguished artists contributed to the quarterly, notably Frederic Leighton, Will Rothenstein, Walter Sickert and Philip Wilson Steer; contributors to the text included Max Beerbohm, John Buchan, Baron Corvo, Edmund Gosse, Kenneth Grahame, Henry James, E. Nesbit and W. B. Yeats.
 
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Price HK$ 10,000



The Poetical Works of Robert Burns. Edited with A Memoir by George A. Aitken - Robert Burns, George A. Aitken

1893 - George Bell and Sons, London - First Aitken Edition
An elegantly bound three volume set of Burns’ works, with engraved portrait frontispiece to first volume.

Featuring Robert Burns’ best-known poetry and songs, including the epic tale of
Tam O’Shanter. Volume I also contains a memoir of Burns by George Atherton Aitken, and to the rear of the final volume is a Glossary, and Index of First Lines. 
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Price HK$ 4,500



Hudibras. With Dr. Grey s Annotations - Samuel Butler

1819 - Charles &, London - New Edition, Corrected and Enlarged
Three volumes finely bound in early 20th century full tan calf. In addition to Butler’s ‘satirical polemic upon Roundheads, Puritans, Presbyterians and many of the other factions involved in the English Civil War’, this edition includes ‘The Author’s Life’ and an extensive introductory preface, combined with Zachary Grey’s details annotations throughout.

Illustrated with numerous woodcut vignettes and eight plates.
 
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Price HK$ 3,000



Advice from a Lady of Quality to her Children, in the Last Stage of a Lingering Illness, In a Series of Evening-Conferences on the Most Interesting Subjects. Translated from the French [by Samuel Glasse]. - Louis-Antoine Caraccioli

1778 - Glocester: Printed by R. Raikes and Sold by J. F. and C. RivingtonFirst edition in English
A rare first edition of this 18th century ‘Tuesdays With Morrie

A popular courtesy book written in a series of ‘conferences’ in the place of chapters. These include Virtue, Pride, Generosity, Female Conduct, Friendship, Love of Truth, Brotherly Love, Study, Pleasure, Ambition, Vanity, Relative Duty, Patriotism, Social Duties.

Unlike most courtesy books, Caraccioli's has the semblance of a plot and reads somewhat like a novel, which ends with the death of the main character. Advice from a Lady went through numerous editions in England and America.
 
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Price HK$ 8,500



1934 - Oxford University Press, London - Fourth Edition
‘Oh for a lodge in some vast wilderness,
Some boundless contiguity of shade,
Where rumour of oppression and deceit,
Of unsuccessful or successful war,
Might never reach me more.’

A excellent copy – finely bound by Sangorski and Sutcliffe – of the poetical works of William Cowper, including his poems ‘Epitaph on a Hare’ and ‘The Task’, together with his Olney Hymns and his translations from classical Latin and Greek verses. Edited and with a preface by H.S. Milford.
 
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Price HK$ 1,600



The Ballad of Beau Brocade and other Poems of the XVIIIth Century - Austin Dobson, Hugh Thomson (illustrator)

1892 - Kegan Paul, London - Large Paper Edition. Number 30 of 450 copies
‘And of all the knights of the gentle trade
Nobody bolder than Beau Brocade.’

An excellent copy of this 18th century-style ballad, one of Dobson’s most spirited works of verse, handsomely bound by Ramage, and charmingly illustrated with fifty black and white drawings by Hugh Thomson, printed on Japanese vellum.

This collection also includes the poems ‘A Gentleman of the Old School’, ‘A Dead Letter’, ‘The Old Sedan Chair’, ‘The Ladies of St. James’, ‘Molly Trefusis’, and ‘A Chapter on Froissart’.
 
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Price HK$ 3,000



The Life of an Actor. Dedicated to Edmund Kean, Esq. The Poetical Descriptions by T. Greenwood. Embellished with Twenty-seven Characteristic Scenes, etched by Theodore Lane; Enriched also with Several Original Designs on Wood, executed by Mr. Thompson - Pierce Egan, T. Greenwood, Theodore Lane (illustrator)

1825 - Printed for C.S. Arnold, London - First Edition
A finely bound example of Pierce Egan’s wonderful and amusing novel centred around Peregrine Proteus, and his various highs and lows attempting to pursue a career on the stage. Dedicated to Edmund Kean (1789-1833) the greatest of English tragic actors, a turbulent genius noted as much for his megalomania and ungovernable behaviour as for his portrayals of villains in Shakespearean plays.

Illustrated with twenty-seven hand-coloured aquatint plates by Theodore Lane and nine woodcut engravings by John Thompson (1785-1866).
 
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Price HK$ 15,000



The "Bab" Ballads: Much Sound and Little Sense - W. S. Gilbert

1869 - John Camden Hotten, London - First Edition
‘A Bishop once- I will not name his see - annoyed his clergy in the mode conventional: From the pulpit-shackles never set them free, and found a sin where sin was unintentional. All pleasures ended in abuse auricular, the Bishop was so terribly peculiar...’

W. S. Gilbert wrote a large number of "ballads" for the magazine Fun using his pen-name "Bab." These Bab Ballads became famous on their own, as well as being a source for plots and songs for the G&S operas.

Though the ballads are essentially English, nothing like them has ever been produced in the English language. They contain both satire and nonsense, and a great deal of utter absurdity. The ballads were very well received, and were read aloud at private dinner-parties, public banquets, and even the House of Lords. They both inspired and entertained great minds such as Oscar Wilde and George Bernard Shaw.

In fine condition and illustrated by Gilbert who explains - ‘
I have ventured to publish the illustrations with them because, while they are certainly quite as bad as the Ballads, I suppose they are not much worse’. 
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Price HK$ 3,000



 
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