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Round the Coast - Anonymous

1895 - George Newnes Limited, London - First Edition
‘We love our haunts by the sea; the poorest among us regards his favourite resort pretty much as the rich man does his country seat – as a place of relaxation from the hurly-burly of life, and yet a home withal.’

A handsome and large (35.5 x 27.5 cm) folio album of photographs of sea side places around the coast of England and Ireland, including Dover, Brighton, Guernsey, Plymouth, and Scarborough, among many others, profusely illustrated throughout with 284 photographs, descriptive passages accompanying each one.
 
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Price HK$ 3,000



A Voyage Round the World, In the Years MDCCXL, I, II, III, IV. - George Anson, Richard Walter

1748 - Printed for the Author, London - First Edition
A finely bound ‘Royal Paper’ copy of the this beautifully illustrated work which ‘has long occupied a distinguished position as a masterpiece of descriptive travel’ (Hill), and ‘a model of what such literature should be’ (Cox).

Containing forty two copper-engraved maps, charts, views, and coastal profiles, all but one folding, including views of Brazilian harbours and cities, Acapulco, Tenian, Port St. Julian, Magellan’s Straits, the Bay of Manila, Saipan, Lama, Lantau, Chinese Junks, and others, and large folding maps of South America, the Philippines, and the Pacific Ocean, as well as the twelve page subscriber list, and the two page instructions to the binder.

England, at war with Spain in 1739, equipped eight ships under the command of George Anson to harass the Spaniards on the western coast of South America, for the purpose of cutting off Spanish supplies of wealth from the Pacific area. Seven ships were lost and out of 900 men, 600 perished. As usual scurvy took an appalling toll.

The Spanish fleet sent out to oppose the British ran into storms; provisions ran out and many ships were wrecked. Thus the primary object of the expedition was not attained, however Anson continued taking prizes off the Pacific coast during 1741-42, and in June 1743, near the Philippines he captured the Spanish galleon
Nostra Seigniora de Cabadonga and its treasure of £400,000 sterling, which allowed Anson and the surviving members of his crew to reach England much the richer. 
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Price HK$ 59,000



Paddiana; or, Scraps and Sketches of Irish Life, Present and Past - Dr. A. Blenkinsop [R.F. Walond]

1847 - Richard Bentley, London - First Edition
A scarce set of two near fine volumes. Entertaining early anecdotes together with a history, and Introduction to Ireland and The Irish.

With titles such as
Head-Breaking; Mrs. Fogarty’s Tea Party; Cads, Fools and Beggars; Ronayne’s Ghost; The Green Traveller; The Last Pigtail; Priests: Catholic and Others; Dublin Carmen; and An Irish Stew.

In the original publisher’s gilt and green cloth, each with wood-engraved title-vignette.
 
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Price HK$ 7,800



Limehouse Nights. Tales of Chinatown - Signed by ‘Barnaby Ross’ and ‘Ellery Queen’ - Thomas Burke

1916 - Grant Richards, London - First Edition, First Issue
A superb copy of this collection of short stories, with fine provenance, not only signed by ‘Barnaby Ross’ and ‘Ellery Queen’, but described by them in Queen’s Quorum as a work of high literary art’, ‘the tales of subtle murder and Oriental passion’, which ‘became a classic overnight.’ Housed in a custom made leather slipcase and cloth chemise.

‘A London native, Burke knew the city intimately and brought it to life in essays, mood pieces, and short stories, most of which had a melodramatic atmosphere of crime. His first and best crime book was
Limehouse Nights (1916), a series of violent tales that rely on authentic background and Oriental flavour for their readability. Subtle passion and sinister murders abound.’ – Stenbrunner & Penzler.

Burke’s best friend ‘was the original model for the character of Quong Lee, the Chinatown philosopher in
Limehouse Nights... Several years later, when his aged friend was deported for having operated an opium den, Burke was inspired to write the first of his collection of short stores about Limehouse. To Burke, whose literary credo was “to tell a story as ably as Ambrose Bierce and to see and write as clearly as Stephen Crane,” Limehouse Nights was “admittedly violent stuff written hastily,” as a means of “simply telling tales”. But it firmly established his literary reputation in Britain, and the film adaptation of the first tale in the collection under the title Broken Blossoms extended the boundaries of his reputation internationally.’ – Reilly 
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Price HK$ 18,000



Hudibras. With Dr. Grey’s Annotations - Samuel Butler

1819 - Charles & Henry Baldwyn, 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



1999 - Jonathan Cape, London - First Edition
A fine copy with an original great big red ink cartoon drawing of Gordon Butcher on the half title page, and signed by Ralph Steadman.

The true story of a Suffolk ploughman, Gordon Butcher, who uncovered the greatest treasure ever found in the British Isles. It was Roman silver of unparalleled beauty and value and, not appreciating what he had discovered, Butcher was savagely cheated out of the fortune that should have been his.

 
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Price HK$ 4,200



A Bibliographical, Antiquarian and Picturesque Tour in the Northern Counties of England and in Scotland - Reverend Thomas Frognall Dibdin

1838 - Printed for the author by C. Richards, London
Dibdin’s two volume bibliographic tour of the libraries of Northern England and Scotland, in contemporary bindings, richly illustrated with in-text engravings, forty full page plates as listed and two more not called for (’Facade of Entrance into the Glasgow Cemetery’ (701) and ‘Seal of Cardinal Beaton and of the University of St. Andrew’ (888))

Full of anecdotes, footnotes that tempt one astray from the text, and Dibdin’s thoughts on a variety of encounters, for example on drinking too much ‘Whiskey’ –

‘We were now then at Dumfries. During and after dinner, I made attacks upon the whiskey in every possible direction: with and without aqueous dilution – with and without saccharine infusion: but to no purpose. “Disguise thyself as thou wilt, still, WHISKEY, still thou art a bitter draught”*. With or without sugar, or water – hot or cold – still thou art brimstone and fire to-day, and fire and brimstone to-morrow. As it was my
first, so it was my last, experiment upon this generally seductive liquor with the Scotch. In the everlasting toddy-potations at Glasgow, I could never be brought to hear my part in brandishing a ladle or emptying a rummer. Even its infusion into the punch-bowl there, though that bowl came fresh and foaming from the “cunning” hand of the good Joseph Hunter, Esq. – even then, the slightest infusion of this pellucid dram seemed, to my palate, to opison the wholeof its contents. “Ah, sir, but you should just live in the mountains a twelvemonth – and then!” – “Execrate it the more”, replied I. My disputant thought me a “hopeless character:” and I bade a longum vale to whiskey

*Substitute “slavery” for “whiskey”, and the quotation is from Sterne. They place very small bottles or decanters of this liquor by the side of a glass, before you; and I believe sixpence will supply you with a portion . . . sufficient to make your head ache for a week. It is poetically called “MOUNTAIN DEW” !’ [Volume II page 446].
 
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Price HK$ 5,000



Flashman at the Charge - From The Flashman Papers 1854-1855 - George MacDonald Fraser

1973 - Barrie & Jenkins, London - First Edition
The fourth packet of Flashman papers, regaling us with further episodes in the life of Harry Flashman, the caddish bully of Tom Brown's School days who was expelled in drunken disgrace from Rugby school in the late 1830's.

This instalment is set during the Battle of Balaclava. Quite amazingly, our dashing, and reluctant leader is at the head of the light brigade.....

As with his previous adventures, Flashman at the Charge is rich in those qualities which one him honour and fame in his own time and have endeared him to hosts of loyal admirer since - cowardice, treachery, lechery and an unfailing instinct for survival, coupled with his own caustic humour and unsparing honesty as a historian.
 
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Price HK$ 2,000



 
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