Sunday, February 27, 2011


This is the life of a bookdealer... at the bottom of every box, the scraps that promise what might have been. This little pile of brown pieces of paper were at the bottom of a box of booksellers' catalogues... One can't help imagine what it would have been like if they had all been complete and good copies instead of single sheets or runs of a few pages.

The single page of How To Make Money would have been interesting, had it appeared complete, but ironically unprofitable. The Annals of Sporting and Fancy Gazette however, would have been a little nicer - maybe £100 if in good condition - a shame here is only a couple of what look like half-title pages. The single pages from what I assume was once a Lives of the Roman Emperors is nice, with its copper engraving of Caligula but remains a single sheet. Then there's pages 1-64 of Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass: it's not possible for me to say from what I have but let's be gloomy and imagine it might once have been an 1872 first edition in which case the list price would be £350.

But the coup de grace has to be the prelims, title, and pages i-x of Popular German Stories... collected by M. M. Grimm. This is, or rather was, the first English edition of Grimm's fairy stories, published by C Baldwyn in London in 1823 and, had it been complete in two volumes would have been priced up, at the very least, at a couple or three thousand pounds!

Ah well...

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