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1911 - Sidgwick & Jackson, London - Number 17 of 35 copies
‘A remarkable book. . . . We know of no book which gives in so few words as this so satisfying, so complete, and so graceful a picture of Edinburgh. If you want to understand the heart of Edinburgh, you can read it here better than in a hundred guide books.’ – The Spectator

A lovely copy of this large, illustrated work on Edinburgh, with text by Bone based on his impressions and opinions of the city during a visit in 1910, and beautifully accompanied by Fletcher’s seventy-five drawings, including 16 tipped-in collotype plates and a lovely frontispiece etching depicting Edinburgh from Salisbury Craig. This copy also features an additional hand-signed etching by Fletcher, the same as frontispiece, bound in at the front.
 
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Price HK$ 4,000



1914 - Henry Young & Sons, Liverpool - Number 405 of 500 copies, signed by the publishers
Two finely bound volumes, illustrated with thirty-one plates. and produced on thick paper. Included is an Essay on Robert Burns by Sir Walter Raleigh, by a Memoir of Lockhart, the Author’s Preface and notes and appendices by William Scott Douglas.

‘Lockhart's
Life of Burns, his first sustained attempt in biography, was for a century and more the standard account of the poet and his work. If Lockhart is sometimes limited, he is generally sensible he was born just before Burns died, and had access to men who had seen and known the poet his critical approach is often close to that of the literary world to which Burns, for a time, turned a hopeful eye and his succinct sketches of Burns's milieu and of the men in it, are excellent.’ ‘One of the few judicious and eminently readable biographies of Burns.’ - Professor James Kinsley, introduction to the 2006 edition. 
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Price HK$ 4,000



Traditions of Edinburgh - Robert Chambers

1825 - Printed by William Chambers for W. & C. Tait, Edinburgh - First Edition
Two finely bound volumes of this popular work by the Chambers brothers, divided into three parts, the the first dedicated to the Old Houses (the entirety of volume I), the second to the Characters, and third part to Traditions, such as the clubs, eateries, Bickers, Burns, Extinct Closes, the King’s Birthday, etc.

The last 60 or so pages cover ‘
Bachanalianism, Taverns, Clubs, etc.’. 
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Price HK$ 1,500



Annals of Scotland, from the Accession of Malcolm III, in the Year MLVII to the Accession of the House of Stewart in the Year MCCCLXXI. - Sir David Dalrymple of Hailes, Bart.

1819 - Archibald Constable & Co. and Fairbairn & Anderson., Edinburgh - Third Edition
Two volumes, encompassing Dalrymple’s greatest work, the third volume, which comprised of Dalrymple’s other historical writings is not included.

‘Lord Hailes's most important contribution to literature was the
Annals of Scotland, of which the first volume, From the accession of Malcolm III, surnamed Canmore, to the accession of Robert I, appeared in 1776, and the second, From the accession of Robert I, surnamed Bruce, to the accession of the house of Stewart, in 1779. It is, as his friend Dr Johnson justly described this work at the time of its appearance, a ‘Dictionary" of carefully sifted facts, which tells all that is wanted and all that is known, but without any laboured splendour of language or affected subtlety of conjecture’.’ 
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Price HK$ 2,000



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



Abbotsford Series of the Scottish Poets - George Eyre-Todd (Editor)

1891 -1896 - William Hodge, Glasgow - First Editions
Six works finely bound in seven volumes, of this first and still comprehensive collection of the Scottish poets, combined with Eyre-Todd’s biographical details for each poet, and historic notes, glossary and essays. Which on publication the Spectator praised as ‘a useful and indeed a valuable contribution to the history of Scottish literature’.

The six works are - The Early Scottish Poetry, [1891]; Medieval Scottish Poetry, [1892]; Scottish Poetry of the Sixteenth Century, [1892]; Scottish Ballad Poetry, [1893]; Scottish Poetry of the Seventeenth Century, [1895]; Scottish Poetry of the Eighteenth Century (two volumes) [1896].

Amongst the numerous poets included are - Thomas the Rhymer, John Barbour, James Beattie, Robert Burns, William Falconer, Sir David Murray, Alexander Scott, Androw of Wyntoun, Henry the Minstrel, Henry (the Minstrel), King James the First, Robert Henryson, William Dunbar, and Gavin Douglas.

This collection presents the best works of about one hundred Scottish poets, from the earliest times up until the nineteenth century. The poems are carefully selected and reproduced from the best editions. Arranged by period and genre, each volume contains an historical introduction, and biographical details are given for all poets. In addition, historical notes are supplied for relevant poems and a selective glossary is provided. Combining the poems of nobility, men and women of the Scottish Enlightenment, plus historical, legendary, and romantic ballads, these attractively presented volumes form a comprehensive reference library for those both new to, and familiar with, Scottish poetry. - from the introduction to the 1997 Routledge reprint.
 
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Price HK$ 4,000



1804 - Printed by T. Bensley for W. Miller, London - First Edition
This remarkable work contains forty-eight engraved plates of Scottish Landscapes and buildings etched by James Fittler (appointed engraver to King George III) from drawings by John Claude Nattes, each one accompanied by a detailed historic description. In addition to the more well known locations of Edinburgh and the Scottish Highlands, Nattes included places such as Aberdeen, Banff, Moray and Inverness.

In a contemporary binding (35.5 x 29 cm), also illustrated with engraved frontispiece, additional engraved title page, and engraved tailpiece.
 
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Price HK$ 8,000



The Candlemass Road - with - The Reavers SIGNED - George MacDonald Fraser

1993 - Harvill, London - First Editions
George MacDonald Fraser wrote The Candlemass Road after completing his research and writing The Steel Bonnets, his non-fiction account of the Anglo-Scottish border Reivers. In this work, firmly based on historical fact, Young Lady Margaret Dacre was brought up in the genteel fashion at the court of Queen Elizabeth I. When her father is murdered, she inherits his lands in the English West March and is plunged into a world where violence and raiding are commonplace. Fraser’s characters are, as always, richly developed through vivid descriptions and witty dialogues. His novel is true to the spirit of the Anglo-Scottish frontier feud.

‘Power, lust and survival in the lawless border country... vivid... perfectly paced.’ –
Independent on Sunday.

Fifteen years later G.M.F. decides to expand on his original
Candlemass plot to produce a book he refers to as ‘Nonsense’ and one that ‘might be described as an Octogenarians rebuke to a generation that seems to have forgotten fun and become obsessed with misery, Disaster, illness, operations....’ (here ensues a long list). ‘The Reavers is simply G.M.F. taking off on what a learned judge would call a frolic of his own.’ This leads to a 16th-century tale of swordplay and gleefully anachronistic wordplay along the Scottish borderlands. A tortuous and torturous tale of four heroes: Gilderoy, dashing Scottish highwayman; Archie Noble, gallant Englishman and proud double-nought operative, licensed to slay; and a beauteous pair of ladies, the noble Lady Godiva Dacre and her randy companion, Kylie. Together the four must stop a Spanish plot to kidnap and replace James VI of Scotland with an impostor who will then gain the English throne on the death of Queen Elizabeth. They must overcome wizards, witches, warlocks and sundry other hazards while Archie and Gilderoy vie for Godiva's fickle affections.

This was G.F.M.’s last novel, a massive wink to the world, with his tongue so firmly in cheek, it is a surprise he could actually sign this copy without collapsing in a fit of laughter.
 
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Price HK$ 1,000



 
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