Exploring One of those “Lesser Paths” of History
“One Hundred Illustrations”
Treasury of Pub Signs). Larwood, Jacob, & John Camden Hotten. The history of signboards, from the earliest times to the present day... sixth edition. London: John Camden Hotten, 1867. 8vo (18.8 cm, 7.4"). Col. frontis., x, 536 pp.; 19 plts.
Click the interior images for enlargement.
Sixth edition (following its initial appearance in the previous
year) of this engaging account, full of anecdotes, historical digressions, and
literary quotations, as well as attempted analysis ofemblems
and their meanings (though this is not, of course, the classic “emblem
book”). “One hundred illustrations in fac-simile” are
attributed to Larwood on the title-page; the work features 19 plates, each depicting
an assortment of house- and pub-signs, as well as a hand-colored frontispiece
“Drawn by Experience . . . Engraved by Sorrow,” in which a cheerful
gin-drinking lady rides her woebegone, care-laden husband.
Title-page stamped by a private collector: “Thomas Witherell
Palmer, Log Cabin Park” (Detroit).
Contemporary half calf with marbled paper–covered sides,
spine with gilt-stamped leather title-label and ornate gilt-stamped decorations
within compartments; binding with light to moderate rubbing overall, with
spine leather starting to show some cracking. All edges stained red. Delightful
reading and looking, and a delightful copy.
Singing & Brewing
Azarian, Mary. The tale of John Barleycorn or from barley to beer. Boston: David R. Godine, 1982. 4to (26 cm, 10.25").  pp.; illus.
Click the images for enlargements.
Stated first edition (paperback): a delightful rendition of the classic English ballad, with the text calligraphed by George Laws and illustrated withnumerous medieval-inspired woodcuts done by Azarian and printed at Daamen Inc. in black and red. The work opens with a brief history and a set of instructions for making beer at home, and includes sheet music for the tune.
Publisher's printed paper wrappers; minor rubbing to extremities and spine (only). Very slightly cockled overall, but a clean, attractive, treasurable or perfectly giftable copy. (36477)
vs. Ramsay). Broadside.
Begins: “Information for William Nairn of Dunsinnan, commissar clerk of
Edinburgh, against Mr. David Ramsay writer to the signet....”[Edinburgh,
ca. 1710]. Folio (31.2 cm, 12.35").  pp.
Account of the legal dispute between Dunsinnan and Ramsay over the
estate of Thomas Young, which included “Fourty Bolls Bear and Malt”;
executory principles are addressed. This is a scarce document, with no copies
listed by ESTC, RLIN, OCLC, or NUC Pre-1956.
In good clean condition, tipped onto a leaf of 19th-century
paper; now in a Mylar folder.
Aid for theEnglish
Great Britain. Laws, statutes, etc., 1760-1820 (George III). Anno regni Georgii III...undecimo.... [An Act for Granting a Bounty upon the Importation of White Oak Staves, and Heading, from the British Colonies or Plantations in America....] London: Pr. by Charles Eyre and William Strahan, 1771. Folio.  f., pp. 1227-1234.
[A Best-Selling How-To
Colin. Mackenzie's five thousand receipts
in all the useful and domestic arts: Constituting a complete practical library
... A new American, from the latest London edition. With numerous and important
additions generally; and the medical part carefully revised and adapted to the
climate of the U. States; and also a new and most copious index. By an American
physician. Philadelphia: James Kay, Jr. & Bro., and Pittsburgh: C.H. Kay
& Co., (© 1829). 8vo (22 cm, 8.6"). 456 pp.; illus.
Click the images for enlargements.
Early U.S. edition: All-encompassing compendium of 19th-century
practical knowledge — anything you can't do using instructions from this
manual, you probably shouldn't be trying in the first place, though one assumes
that in many cases there are more effective modern means now established! The
work starts out with metallurgy (including everything you need to know in order
to assay the value of silver, cast bronze finely, or color steel blue), proceeds
to art (make your own crayons, or paint a miniature on ivory), and ranges to
subjects such as farriery, tanning, horticulture, and husbandry, before closing
with an assortment of miscellanea not covered by any previous header. Culinary
wine-making, preserving, and confectionary, as well as good basic recipes for
such classics as potted beef, quince pudding, mock turtle soup, and “tomata
catsup”; the carving appendix is illustrated with in-text wood engravings.
The medicine section is quite lengthy, and covers ailments both mild and severe.
Five Thousand Receipts was first printed in America in 1826, and enjoyed
as enthusiastic a reception in the United States as it previously had in England.
This is the fourth American edition, here in the Kay variant giving “122
Chestnut Street – near 4th” as the publisher's address.
Kelsey, New York City.
Bitting 299; Lowenstein 122; Shoemaker 39366. Contemporary
sheep, spine with gilt-stamped leather title-label and gilt-stamped decorations;
worn and abraded, joints open and fragile, front cover darkened, leather lost
at spine extremities. Front free endpaper with early inked ownership inscription;
front fly-leaf with small hole and pencilled annotations. Pages with varying
degrees of age-toning and spotting, several signatures deeply browned. Some
corners dog-eared. One leaf with upper outer corner torn away, with loss of
a few words; one leaf with tear from lower margin extending into text without
loss; one leaf with internal closed tear, without loss. Used, as this usually
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