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Poems Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect - Facsimile (From Photogravure Blocks) of the Kilmarnock edition 1786 - Robert Burns

1909 - D Brown & Co. [Printer], Kilmarnock - Facsimile of the 1786 edition
A fine, unopened copy. This is the 1909 facsimile of the rare and celebrated "Kilmarnock Burns" of 1786, printed from photogravure blocks under the supervision of D. McNaught, Esq. J.P., editor of The Burns Chronicle, the proofs being revised from an uncut copy in his possession.

In 1786 at the age of 27, although he had never published anything before, Burns (1759-96) decided to publish a volume of his poems. 612 copies were printed for him by John Wilson of Kilmarnock. They sold out within a month. There are estimated to be less than 70 complete ‘Kilmarnock’ copies in existence today. For this reason D. McNaught used his own uncut copy to produce this facsimile in 1909.

Burns, encouraged by this success, and by a letter from an Edinburgh minister, Dr. Blacklock, moved to Edinburgh instead of emigrating to Jamaica. He became a celebrity and in 1787 a new edition of 1500 copies, to be sold by subscription, was agreed upon with an additional 17 poems and five new songs. There was far greater demand than estimated, so the book was reset, and approximately 3,250 copies printed.
 
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Price HK$ 1,500



I Leap Before I Look - David Haig-Thomas

1936 - Putnam, London - First Edition
Haig-Thomas (1908-44), Cambridge blue (1930, 1931,1932), Olympic rower, traced the route of the Awash River with Wilfred Thesiger, arctic explorer, ornithologist, member of Special Commando Boating Group in WWII specialising in using canoes and kayaks for limpet attacks in arctic waters, and he could write.

A fine copy in the scarce dust jacket of what the
Spectator magazine in 1937 perfectly describes as an ‘account of the more exciting moments of [Haig-Thomas’] youth, mostly passed in the pursuit of thrills. He found them in raiding the printers at Eton for examination papers, tying umbrellas to the spires of King's College chapel, rowing in the University boat-race, poaching ibex in the Pyrenees and photographing wild geese on the Fens - his favourite occupation. Being in America for the Olympic games, he decided to visit friends in Canada, and having no money made the journey by "jumping" a freight train, and then kept himself by odd jobs on farms. All this is amusingly described. But it is his passion for the solitude of the marshes and the call of fighting geese that leavens the toughness of his outlook and distinguishes his book from the usual records of thrill-hunters’. 
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Price HK$ 5,800



Our Cruise in the Undine - Edmund George Harvey

1854 - John W. Parker and Son, London - First Edition
A rare work. The Cruise was ‘a three-week expedition of 1,000 miles up the Seine, etc., to the Rhine below Basle; down the Rhine to Cologne; by train (with the Undine on board) from Cologne to Bruges, where the boat was stored for the winter. The voyagers, who are known throughout the book as The Professor, The Captain, and The Doctor, showed remarkable tolerance for the outlandishness and ignorance of the natives they encountered.’

Harvey [1828-84] was an author and musical composer, who after studying at Cambridge, resided for a few years on the continent, at which time he undertook his adventures in the
Undine. He was later ordained.

Illustrated with ten engraved plated, charmingly decorated initial letters for each chapter, and a folding engraved map showing ‘
Our Route through France and Germany’. 
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Price HK$ 2,000



Our Autumn Holiday on French Rivers - James L. Molloy, Linley Sambourne (illustrator)

1874 - Bradbury, London - First Edition
Three Men in a Boat holds nothing on this stunningly illustrated account of a six-week rowing holiday on the Seine and Loire in the 40 foot four-oared Marie, by a group of young men dressed appropriately and accompanied by their terrier Gyp.

Of those oarsmen, the author, James Molloy, an accomplished French scholar, who despite being called to the English bar from the Middle Temple, acting as secretary to Sir John Holker, attorney-general, and being private chamberlain to Pope Leo XIII, grew to be one of the most successful Irish song composers of his time. Whilst the illustrator, Edward Linley Sambourne, whose descendants include his great grandson the Earl of Snowdon, Viscount Linley and Oliver Messel, became famous for his work for Punch magazine over 40 years, the last ten as ‘First Cartoonist’, following on from John Tenniel, the illustrator of
Alice in Wonderland.

A bright, rare, most unusual and brilliantly written book, with excellent illustrations by Linley Sambourne. Molloy’s work was to serve as a model for Robert Louis Stevenson’s
An Inland Voyage published four years later. 
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Price HK$ 3,500



Practical Boat Building for Amateurs - Adrian Neison C.E.

1878 - “The Bazaar” Office, London - First Edition
A scarce work in first edition, which became very popular and was later expanded and edited by Dixon Kemp. One of the earliest books to provide the designs and details of MacGregor’s ‘Rob Roy’ canoe.

As described in the title, chapters cover -
Designing; Tools and Materials; Punts; Skiffs; The Rob Roy Canoe; The Sailing Boat; and Canoes - Canadian Bateaux–Canvas Canoe–Shooting Punt.

Illustrated throughout with vignettes, plans and diagrams.
 
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Price HK$ 2,000



The Oarsman’s and Angler’s Map of the River Thames - E. G. Ravenstein F.R.G.S.

Circa 1873-1877 - James Reynolds, London
A super copy, of this rare and early map of the Thames, which folds out to over eight feet in length (2.64m, 104”), canvassed backed and housed in the original publisher’s green cloth covers, blind embossed and titled in gilt.

Beginning at Cirencester and Kemble, then passing through Cricklade, Kelmscott, Oxford, Reading, Henley, Maidenhead, ending at London Bridge, including details of locks, the charge to use them, bridges, towns and villages.

With single page introductory notes pasted to front pastedown.
 
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Price HK$ 5,000



The Oarsman’s and Angler’s Map of the River Thames From Its Source to London Bridge. - E. G. Ravenstein F.R.G.S.

1909 - Edward Stanford, London - New Edition
A bright ad near fine copy of this early map of the Thames, folding out to over eight feet in length (2.67m, 105”), cloth backed and housed in the original publisher’s green cloth covers titled in gilt.

Beginning at Cirencester and Kemble, then passing through Cricklade, Kelmscott, Oxford, Reading, Henley, Maidenhead, ending at London Bridge, including details of locks, the charge to use them, bridges, towns and villages.

With sixteen page pamphlet pasted to front pastedown, laying out the charges, lock tolls, bye-laws, and a list of electric charging stations on the Thames.
 
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Price HK$ 2,500



Cruises in Small Yachts and Big Canoes - H. Fiennes Speed

1883 - Norie & Wilson, London - First Edition
A charming, and amusing account, charmingly illustrated throughout with 62 vignettes and two full page woodcuts ‘by The Crew’, as well as ten maps (two of which are folding). Exemplifying the style and approach to yachting by the gentleman sailor and his chums, and also in this case, his young wife, unused to water, but brave and devoted enough to accompany him aboard the ‘big canoe’ for seven weeks.

Harry Fiennes Speed (1857-), attended Brazenose College, Oxford and as Captain of the Oxford Canoe Club made a cruise in a small canoe down the Thames to Margate and back, 259 miles of river and coastal work in ten days. He practised as a barrister, later turning to the ministry.
 
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Price HK$ 1,600



 
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