Results 1 - 8 of 47 results

Watership Down - Richard Adams

1972 - Rex Collings, London - First Edition
A beautiful copy of this classic heroic fantasy and political novel about a small group of rabbits who are anthropomorphised, possessing their own culture, language (Lapine), proverbs, poetry, and mythology. Evoking epic themes, the novel recounts the rabbits' odyssey as they escape the destruction of their warren to seek a place in which to establish a new home, encountering perils and temptations along the way.

The novel takes its name from the rabbits' destination, Watership Down, a hill in the north of Hampshire, England, near the area where Adams grew up, and is based on a collection of tales that Adams told to his young children to pass the time on trips to the countryside.

Though it was initially rejected by thirteen publishers before eventually being accepted by Rex Collings,
Watership Down has never been out of print, and was the recipient of several prestigious awards. Adapted into an acclaimed film and a television series, it is Penguin Books' best-selling novel of all time.

‘As much about freedom, ethics and human nature as it is about a bunch of bunnies looking for a warm hidey-hole and some mates.’ – Paul Hughes.
 
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Price HK$ 15,000



The Origin of Civilisation and the Primitive Condition of Man - Mental and Social Conditions of Savages - Right Hon. Lord. Avebury

1912 - Longmans, London - Seventh Edition and Last Edition
A fine copy of this influential and significant work was first published in 1870, this is a comprehensively reworked and augmented edition and the last one to be written by The Right Honourable John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury [1834-1913]. Lubbock was a banker working with his family’s company, but also made significant contributions in archaeology, ethnography, and several branches of biology. He helped establish archaeology as a scientific discipline, and was influential in nineteenth-century debates concerning evolutionary theory.

Illustrated with 6 photographic plates, numerous sketches and drawings, together with tables and detailed index.
 
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Price HK$ 1,500



The Book of Were-Wolves: Being an Account of a Terrible Superstition - Sabine Baring-Gould

1865 - Smith, London - First Edition
Nearly as rare as it’s subjects, a superb first edition of the foundation work on shape-shifting, were-wolves, and the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s descriptions of Count Dracula’s wolfish appearance. In original bright pictorial gilt cloth, were-wolf to the front and the dark frontispiece of The Were-Wolves and their prey. Suitably housed in a blood red morocco leather clamshell case, lined with felt, and lettered in gilt.

‘The Book of Were-Wolves takes a rationalistic approach to the subject, the first ten chapters of this book constitute an essential work on the subject; however, starting with Chapter XI, the narrative takes a strange turn into sensationalistic 'true crime' case-studies of cannibals, grave desecrators, and blood fetishists, which have a tenuous connection with lycanthropy. This includes an extended treatment of the case of Giles de Rais, the notorious associate of Joan of Arc, who was convicted and executed for necrosadistic crimes.’

The author, eclectic British scholar, vicar, archaeologist, historian, Sabine Baring-Gould (1834-1924) inspired
My Fair Lady, and wrote the hymn Onward Christian Soldiers. 
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Price HK$ 46,000



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$ 38,000



Solar Biology: A Scientific Method of Delineating Character; Diagnosing Disease, Determining Mental, Physical and Business Qualifications, Conjugal Adaptability, Etc., Etc., From Date of Birth. - Hiram E. Butler

1889 - Esoteric Publishing Company, Boston - Early Edition
The next time someone asks you "what's your sign" as an icebreaker, remember Mr. Hiram E. Butler. Hiram Butler put forward a radically simplified version of astrology during the 19th century. Although not well known today, Butler is the missing link in the chain from Ptolemy's Tetrabiblos to today’s astrology column.

A bright and near fine copy, scarce in this condition. A comprehensive work, with illustrations including over 150 full page plates showing the annual positions of the planets.
 
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Price HK$ 2,200



1758 - Printed by S. Richardson, London - First Edition
One of the Earliest Major Works of Greek Scholarship by a Woman, and still considered the best English translation of Epictetus, the Stoic philosopher. Epictetus was a major influence on Marcus Aurelius who quoted him extensively in his Meditations.


Elizabeth Carter [1717-1806] was an English poet, classicist, writer and translator, and a member of the Bluestocking Circle. She mastered several modern and ancient languages (including Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and Arabic) and science. She rendered into English De Crousaz's
Examen de l'essai de Monsieur Pope sur l'homme (Examination of Mr Pope's "An Essay on Man", two volumes, 1739); Algarotti's Newtonianismo per le donne (Newtonianism for women); and wrote a small volume of poems. Carter's position in the pantheon of eighteenth century women writers was, however, secured by her translation in 1758 of All the Works of Epictetus, Which are Now Extant, the first English translation of all known works by the Greek stoic philosopher. This work made her name and fortune, securing her a spectacular £1000 in subscription money.

She was a friend of Samuel Johnson, editing some editions of his periodical
The Rambler. He wrote that ‘[my] old friend, Mrs Carter could make a pudding [just] as well as translate Epictetus... and work a handkerchief [just] as well as compose a poem’. She was friends with many other eminent men, as well as being a close confidant of Elizabeth Montagu, Hannah More, Hester Chapone, and several other members of the Bluestocking circle. She also wrote to Emma Hamilton, who called Carter ‘the most learned female who ever lived’. 
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Price HK$ 16,000



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



 
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