19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop Archives - Rare Book Insider

19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop

  • Showing all 11 results

book (2)

Tanglewood Tales

HAWTHORNE, NATHANIEL First American edition, first printing of Hawthorne’s final children’s book. A spectacular American literary presentation copy inscribed by Nathaniel Hawthorne to Oliver Wendell Holmes: “O.W. Holmes from his friend N.H.” Holmes wrote about Tanglewood Tales with great enthusiasm in a letter to its publisher, James T. Fields: “Hawthorne’s book has been not devoured, but bolted by my children. I have not yet had a chance at it, but I don’t doubt I shall read it with as much gusto as they, when my turn comes. When you write to him, thank him if you please for me, for I suppose he will hardly expect any formal acknowledgment” (September 6, 1853). The two were friends for many years. Holmes served as Hawthorne’s pallbearer in May 1864. The next month he wrote in The Atlantic, “Our literature could ill spare the rich ripe autumn of such a life as Hawthorne’s, but he has left enough to keep his name in remembrance as long as the language in which he shaped his deep imaginations is spoken by human lips.” Inscribed copies of Tanglewood Tales are rare at auction, with no other examples appearing since 1974. This volume, inscribed by Hawthorne to Holmes, must be counted as one of the best nineteenth-century American literary presentation copies in private hands. BAL 7614 (first printing, with only Boston Stereotype Foundry on the copyright page). Clark A22.2a. Original green cloth. Spine ends chipped, rear joint repaired. Half morocco case. Provenance: 1. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., inscribed by Nathaniel Hawthorne; 2. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., with his calling card inscribed to his nephew, presenting the book as a Christmas gift: “Ned with love Merry Christmas from his uncle Wendell.”
  • $30,000
  • $30,000
book (2)

The Complete Writings

Whitman, Walt First edition of “the first comprehensive collection of Whitman’s work.” This is the rare deluxe issue printed on Japan vellum, number 2 of only 10 such sets, in the magnificent original morocco binding. Bound in is a fine autograph letter signed by Whitman (2pp, Camden, 30 January 1876) to Jeanette Gilder, then literary critic of the New York Herald. After discussing personal matters, the poet writes out for Gilder a letter he has written to the Herald’s editor seeking to promote his new book, Two Rivulets. Writing that letter in full, Whitman states: “Editor Herald. Would like to have say a four or five column article for the paper embodying the poems, &c. of my new book “Two Rivulets,” to publish say eight or ten days before their issue by me? —making a resume of the book in advance giving the principal pieces, (hitherto unpublished—& to be first printed in said article.) If so, I will make out such an article & send you, for your determination. The price would be $200. I have thought that as you like to have things in advance—& also to give variety to the paper—such a proposition might be acceptable. If not, no harm done. WW.” “Whitman left his literary legacy in the hands of the three men who had been among his closest companions and fiercest champions during the last twenty or so years of his life: Horace Traubel, Richard Maurice Bucke, and Thomas Harned. In their zeal to ensure what they saw as Whitman’s rightful place in American literature, immediately following Whitman’s death they began to publish from among the letters, manuscript notes, prose fragments, and other writings Whitman had left behind. Their efforts culminated ten years after Whitman had died in the first comprehensive collection of Whitman’s work: the ten-volume Complete Writings of Walt Whitman, published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons in 1902, illustrated with manuscript facsimiles and numerous photographs and paintings of the poet.” The executors also supplied an authorized biography of Whitman for the first volume, and Oscar Lovell Triggs contributed a bibliography and other critical apparatus for the last volume. See Graham in Walt Whitman Encyclopedia. This magnificent edition of Whitman’s works is noteworthy for its importance, limitation, paper, binding, and accompanying letter. A more desirable Whitman set cannot be found. 10 volumes. Ten frontispieces and five plates, each in three states. Publisher’s certificate of limitation stating that this is set number 2 of 10 printed on Japan vellum. Notarized certificate signed by Jeanette Gilder concerning the accompanying Whitman letter. Magnificent original green morocco gilt with red, white and black floral morocco onlays, t.e.g., others uncut; velvet doublures and linings. Very minimal wear. A stunning set.
  • $45,000
  • $45,000
Collection of six autograph letters signed with initials to Charles Sumner

Collection of six autograph letters signed with initials to Charles Sumner

LONGFELLOW, HENRY WADSWORTH 6 letters comprising 22 pages, various sizes. Very good condition. An important correspondence between Longfellow and his closest friend, Charles Sumner, the abolitionist senator from Massachusetts. A highlight of the collection is the letter Longfellow wrote immediately after the brutal attack on Sumner by congressman Preston Brooks. Two days after Sumner’s May 20, 1856 speech condemning southern slaveholders, Brooks repeatedly struck Sumner on the head with a cane on the floor of the Senate. The badly injured Sumner was unable to retake his Senate seat for more than three years. These fascinating letters cover a wide range of literary and personal matters. He reports to Sumner on “a dinner given by Lowell to Darley the artist, who is now here making studies for a series of Illustrations for ‘The Scarlet Letter,’” the success of the Atlantic Monthly, and the latest from Oliver Wendell Holmes (“in full blast, at his ‘Breakfast Table’”). He discusses Emerson’s speech at the Burns dinner, an inside joke by Lowell in an Atlantic article on Shakepeare, and refers to Emerson, Dana, Norton, Ticknow, James, Palfrey, Felton, Parker, Stowe, Fields, and many others. Longfellow’s touching letter on the death of the historian William H. Prescott states in part, “And so I stand here at my desk by the window, thinking of you, and hoping you will get some other letter from Boston before you do mine, so that I may not be the first to break to you the sad news of Prescott’s death! Yes, he is dead! He died of a stroke of paralysis on Friday last We shall see that cheerful, genial, sunny face no more! How much sunshine it will take out of the social life of Boston!” This is a superb and wide-ranging correspondence between two giants of the era. Their close friendship lasted until Sumner’s death in 1874. Longfellow was among the pallbearers at his funeral, together with Ralph Waldo Emerson, John Greenleaf Whittier, and Oliver Wendell Holmes. “the greatest voice, on the greatest subject, that has been entered since we became a nation. No matter for insults—we feel them with you—no matter for wounds, we also bleed in them! You have torn the mask off the faces of Traitors, and at last the Spirit of the North is aroused.” – Longfellow to Sumner after the Preston Brooks caning. See Blue, “The Poet and the Reformer: Longfellow, Sumner, and the Bonds of Male Friendship, 1837-1874,” Journal of the Early Republic, Summer 1995.
  • $12,000
  • $12,000
Autograph manuscript signed Emily

Autograph manuscript signed Emily, the poem I came to buy a smile today.

DICKINSON, EMILY. In this rare manuscript poem by Emily Dickinson, the speaker solicits a shopkeeper s smile: I came to buy a smile today But just a single smile The smallest one upon your face Will suit me just as well The one that no one else would miss It shone so very small I m pleading at the counter sir Could you afford to sell I ve Diamonds on my fingers You know what Diamonds are? I ve Rubies like the Evening Blood And Topaz like the Star! Twould be a Bargain for a Jew! Say may I have it Sir? The poem showcases the poet s signature use of ballad verse as well as jewel imagery representative of her interest in the natural world and aesthetic presentation (Kelly et al., The Networked Recluse: The Connected World of Emily Dickinson). Dickinson famously published only a handful of poems in her lifetime. Instead she shared her work in letters to mentors, friends, and a few others. She evidently sent this poem to family friend Samuel Bowles, the publisher of the Springfield Republican. Dickinson sent some forty poems to Bowles over the course of their correspondence between 1861 and 1862. None was among the seven uncredited poems printed in the Republican likely without Dickinson s consent during her lifetime. This is one of two extant autograph manuscripts of I Came to buy a smile today. The other, held by Harvard, is not signed, and it does not show Dickinson s expressive punctuation to the same extent as the present manuscript. This poem demonstrates Dickinson s characteristic imaginative use of line breaks and punctuation. Scholars have long emphasized the importance of reading Dickinson s works in their original manuscript form. Printed editions of her poetry lose essential aspects of their meaning when they neglect her unique line arrangements and punctuation. Even with access to digital copies of Dickinson manuscripts, studying digital reproductions can lead us to lose track of [the manuscripts ] status as individual pieces of paper that were marked, folded, corrected, mutilated, sent through the mails, sewn into booklets, or tucked between the pages of a book (Kelly). This is a rare opportunity to acquire a complete Emily Dickinson poem, a centerpiece for any American literature collection. Most of Dickinson s manuscripts have long been in institutional collections, particularly those of Harvard, Amherst, Boston Public Library, and the Jones Library in Amherst. 12mo. 2 pages. Small stain to second page, partial separation at fold. Near fine condition.
  • $125,000
  • $125,000
Autograph manuscript notebook

Autograph manuscript notebook, the working notebook for the verses later published in The Seraphim, and Other Poems.

[BROWNING,] ELIZABETH B. BARRETT. This extraordinary manuscript is Elizabeth Barrett Browning s heavily revised autograph working notebook for The Seraphim, and Other Poems, the book that first brought her fame. This notebook contains drafts of all of the major poems in The Seraphim, published by Saunders and Otley in 1838. This work helped to establish her as one of the most important poets of her day. In addition, the manuscript contains nine other poems that remain unpublished as well as countless otherwise unknown lines not used in the published text. This visually dramatic notebook is crowded with Elizabeth Barrett s manuscript revisions, making it a vital untapped source for the study of the poet s working methods and artistic development. She has filled the notebook s pages with her verse in her minuscule hand. Painstaking revisions reflect the intensity of her process. Many abandoned passages some quite long are known only from the survival of this volume. The Seraphim was the first work that Elizabeth Barrett issued under her name (she took Robert Browning s name when they married in 1846), apart from The Battle of Marathon, printed when she was fourteen. Leading journals gave the work substantial reviews. Barrett went from being essentially unknown to one of the most promising English poets of her generation. She soon became one of the most popular and acclaimed poets in Britain. She laid out her approach to poetry in the preface to the published edition: Poetry is essentially truthfulness and the very incoherences of poetic dreaming are but the struggle and the strife to reach the True in the Unknown. For Barrett these poems represented the first utterances of my individuality, as she wrote to John Kenyon, a wealthy family friend and patron of the arts. Her art became all consuming. As she wrote in the 1838 Preface to The Seraphim, I can never feel more intensely that at this moment the sublime uses of poetry, and the solemn responsibilities of the poet Her poetic inspiration is the highest we can conceive of nothing more august. Her sense of Art is pure in itself. Edgar Allan Poe on Elizabeth Barrett Browning Such a combination of the finest genius and the choicest results of cultivation and wide-ranging studies has never been seen before in any woman. Edinburgh Review on Elizabeth Barrett Manuscripts of this length and quality by major nineteenth-century English and American authors are very rare in the market. It has been a decade since anything remotely comparable to the present manuscript has appeared for sale. The present Elizabeth Barrett Browning manuscript, comprising approximately 4850 lines on 151 pages, is one of the finest nineteenth century literary manuscripts remaining in private hands. Manuscripts of this importance continue to be permanently removed from the market and placed in major institutions. Approximately 4850 lines, ink and pencil, on 159 pages including 8 blanks. 8vo (185 x 115 mm). Barrett s ownership inscription on front pastedown ( E.B.B. 1837 ) and additionally signed with initials by the poet on various pages. Corner of pp. 93 and 94 torn with loss, some foxing, ink stains. Contemporary half green calf and marbled paper-covered boards, worn. Morocco case. This is a rare opportunity to acquire a major manuscript by one of the most important authors of the nineteenth century. The unpublished poems in this manuscript are an important resource in the story of women s literature in the nineteenth century. Virtually all literary manuscripts of this significance from this era have vanished into institutional collections.
  • $550,000
  • $550,000
Photographic portrait inscribed by Whitman with four lines from Leaves of Grass!

Photographic portrait inscribed by Whitman with four lines from “Salut au Monde!”

Whitman, Walt A rare portrait with a Leaves of Grass quotation in Whitman’s hand. The photogenic and self-promoting poet sat for (and gave away) many photographs, but very rarely did he inscribe them with his verse. Here he writes lines from his poem “Salut au Monde!”—his “calling card to the world, as well as one of his most successful compositions.” Whitman writes beneath this portrait the very lines that Folsom and Allen call a “prophetic exclamation” of Whitman’s desire for an international audience (Walt Whitman & the World, p. 1): My spirit has passed in compassion and determination around the whole earth, I have look’d for equals & lovers, and found them ready for me in all lands; I think some divine rapport has equalized me with them. “‘Salut au Monde!’ is Whitman’s calling card to the world, as well as one of his most successful compositions. With its closeups and panoramic visions of the earth, the poem extends and internationalizes the outward progression of the first person seer in ‘Song of Myself.’ It begins the journey motif in what James E. Miller has classified as the ‘Song Section’ (‘Song of the Open Road,’ ‘Song of the Rolling Earth,’ etc.) of Leaves of Grass. From American brotherhood to a universal unity, Whitman’s ongoing poetic aspiration is toward an ‘internationality of poems and poets, binding the lands of the earth closer than all treaties and diplomacy’” (Zapata-Whelan, Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia). The poem was first published in the second edition of Leaves of Grass (1856) under the title “Poem of Salutation.” The poet amended the work slightly and retitled it “Salut au Monde!” for the third edition of Leaves of Grass (1860). A splendid Whitman portrait with a rare and deeply personal Leaves of Grass inscription. This is the only Whitman portrait inscribed with a Leaves of Grass poem that we have been able to locate. Photomechanical print from a photograph made in Toronto in 1880. 5 ½ x 3 ½ in. image size. Fine, ornate gilt frame. Fine condition. Folsom, “Notes on Photographs,” 1880s, no. 8.
  • $75,000
  • $75,000
Common Sense; Addressed to the Inhabitants of America . . . the third edition [bound with:] Large Additions to Common Sense

Common Sense; Addressed to the Inhabitants of America . . . the third edition [bound with:] Large Additions to Common Sense

PAINE, THOMAS FIRST EDITION, FIRST PRINTING sheets of Common Sense, here with the third edition title page and prefatory leaf. Richard Gimbel’s definitive study identifies points in every gathering distinguishing the three editions that Bell printed in early 1776. This copy of Common Sense contains all of the points of the first printing, save the two-leaf gathering [A]2 (title and preface). Bound in at the end is Paine’s Large Additions to Common Sense, which Bell pirated from a competitor and offered separately for one shilling to buyers of Common Sense. “Paine’s Common Sense, published anonymously in January 1776, was the first vigorous attack on King George and the first public appeal for an American Republic. It is not too much to say that the Declaration of Independence of July 4, 1776, was due more to Paine’s Common Sense than to any other single piece of writing” (Streeter). Born in England in 1737, Paine moved to London in 1774 where he met Benjamin Franklin, who encouraged him to emigrate to America. Franklin provided Paine with letters of introduction to his son William Franklin, royal governor of New Jersey, and his son-in-law Richard Bache, an influential merchant in Philadelphia. Paine arrived in America in November 1774, an unemployed 37-year old immigrant. Through Franklin’s influence, the brilliant but unpolished Paine gained access to many leading American intellectuals and soon became editor of the Pennsylvania Magazine. Within one year of his arrival, Paine was working on early drafts of Common Sense, which was published on January 10, 1776. The pamphlet, which immediately became the most talked-about publication in America, made Paine a the leading voice of revolution. Common Sense is brilliant in its simplicity and contains many of the most memorable phrases of the revolutionary period. Paine wrote, “in America the law is King. For as in absolute governments the King is law, so in free countries the law ought to be King; and there ought to be no other. A government of our own is our natural right it is infinitely wiser and safer, to form a constitution of our own in a cool deliberate manner, while we have it in our power, than to trust such an interesting event to time and chance.” It was “the most brilliant pamphlet written during the American Revolution, and one of the most brilliant pamphlets ever written in the English language” (Bernard Bailyn). “The immediate success and impact of Common Sense was nothing short of astonishing. Common Sense went through twenty-five editions and reached literally hundreds of thousands of readers in the single year 1776 The pamphlet’s astonishing impact stemmed from the fact that it appeared at precisely the moment when Americans were ready to accept Paine’s destruction of arguments favoring conciliation and his appeal to latent republicanism, to the material interests of the colonists and to the widespread hopes for the future of the New World. By doing all this in a new style of writing and a new political language, Paine ‘broke the ice that was slowly congealing the revolutionary movement’” (Foner, Tom Paine and Revolutionary America). Together with the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and The Federalist, Common Sense is one of the fundamental documents of the birth of our nation. The most recent census of Common Sense locates seventeen complete first editions. Only two of these remain in private hands, and neither is likely to appear for sale. The present volume, containing the first edition sheets, is the most desirable available copy of Common Sense, perhaps the most influential book in American history. Two volumes in one. Disbound, original stabholes visible. K1 detached with blank lower margin torn. Some staining, foxing and wear, old inscription on verso of title. Half morocco case. Gimbel, Thomas Paine. A Bibliographical Checklist of Common Sense (New Haven, 1956).
  • $250,000
  • $250,000
AMIRI BARAKA. (LEROI JONES)

AMIRI BARAKA. (LEROI JONES)

BARBOZA, ANTHONY (BARAKA, AMIRI) (LEROI JONES) Gelatin silver print. 14 x 14 in. image on 16 x 20 in. sheet. Light wear. Signed by Barboza and titled “Imamu Baraka – poet – 76” by the photographer. This is a splendid Anthony Barboza portrait of Amiri Baraka. Baraka’s illustrious and controversial 50-year career, in which he first achieved fame as Leroi Jones, encompassed poetry, drama, fiction, criticism, and activism. Critic Arnold Rampersad counted Baraka with Phillis Wheatley, Frederick Douglass, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, Richard Wright, and Ralph Ellison “as one of the eight figures who have significantly affected the course of African-American literary culture.” Anthony Barboza (b. 1944) is perhaps most famous for his portraits of musicians, dancers, and writers and for his photojournalist, fashion, and editorial spreads in countless magazines. His work has been exhibited in many solo and group shows and is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, Cornell University, the Brooklyn Museum, the Schomburg Center – NYPL, and the National Portrait Gallery, among others. Barboza’s photographs are the subject of a major new monograph, Eyes Dreaming: Photography by Anthony Barboza (Getty Museum). This is a splendid portrait linking two of the great African American artists of the second half of the twentieth century. “When I do a portrait, I’m doing a photograph of how that person feels to me; how I feel about the person, not how they look. I find that in order for the portraits to work, they have to make a mental connection as well as an emotional one. When they do that, I know I have it”—Anthony Barboza
  • $4,200
  • $4,200
Pocket Book of Baby and Child Care [Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care]

Pocket Book of Baby and Child Care [Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care]

SPOCK, BENJAMIN ONE OF THE BOOKS OF THE CENTURY. Spock’s book helped to revolutionize child-rearing in post-war America. Within one year of its first publication the book sold 750,000 copies, and it has since sold more than 50 million copies in ten editions and more than 40 languages. “When it appeared in 1946, the advice in Dr. Spock’s now classic book was a dramatic break from the prevailing ‘expert’ opinion. Rather than force a baby into a strict behavioral schedule, Spock, who had training in both pediatrics and psychiatry, encouraged parents to use their own judgment and common sense” (NYPL Books of the Century). The New York Times noted that “babies do not arrive with owner’s manuals But for three generations of American parents, the next best thing was Baby and Child Care Dr. Benjamin Spock breathed humanity and common sense into child-rearing.” Spock’s critics believed that his “permissive” approach to parenting had helped to create a generation of self-centered narcissists—the baby boomers and the counterculture of the 1960s. Spock’s book was first issued by Duell, Sloan and Pearce in May 1946 as the Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care. That hardcover edition was intended to capture the notice of reviewers and the medical community. But the main publishing effort was the Pocket Books paperback titled The Pocket Book of Baby and Child Care. That textually identical edition, first published a few weeks later at 25 cents to maximize sales and reach, became a runaway bestseller. This typescript, which uses the Pocket Books title, concludes with the toilet training section. The published edition continues with sections on older children beginning at age one. This corrected typescript shows countless substantial differences from the published edition. Comparison of this typescript with the published text reveals that Spock added and removed many passages and entire sections of the book. This is the only extant manuscript of the first edition of Spock’s Baby and Child Care. Spock’s voluminous papers, held by Syracuse University, include multiple boxes relating to the second and later editions, but the first edition is not represented there. New York Public Library Books of the Century 95. Guardian 100 Best Nonfiction Books of All Time 33. Library of C Original ribbon typescript, with manuscript corrections, of the first edition of one of the best-selling and most influential books of the 20th century. INQUIRE FOR MORE DETAILS.
  • $35,000
  • $35,000
Aristoteles Master-piece

Aristoteles Master-piece, or, The Secrets of Generation displayed in all the parts thereof [Aristotle’s Masterpiece]

[Aristotle] First edition of Aristotle’s Masterpiece, “the most popular book about women’s bodies, sex, pregnancy, and childbirth in Britain and America from its first appearance in 1684 up to at least the 1870s” (Treasures, Library Company of Philadelphia). Aristotle’s Masterpiece—neither by Aristotle nor a masterpiece—is “the first sex manual written in English” (Norman). The work documents theories and practices of human reproduction during the early modern period. This first edition was assembled in part from excerpts of existing midwifery books, primarily Levinus Lemnius’s The Secret Miracles of Nature (1658) and Jacob Rueff’s The Expert Midwife (1658). The book’s pseudo-Aristotle attribution both lent it an aura of credibility and hinted at the sexual nature of its contents. After the publication of a book called Aristotle’s Problems in 1595, which included a few explicit discussions of sex, the name ‘Aristotle’ came to euphemistically indicate sexual knowledge to an early modern audience. Unlike medical texts on similar subjects, the book was intended for a vernacular readership and was widely disseminated in Britain and America. It was eventually published in hundreds of editions in at least three versions, each appropriating and combining text from existing works. On average, an edition of the Masterpiece was published every year for 250 years. It was still for sale in London’s Soho sex shops as late as the 1930s. The book’s title page—promising “a word of Advice to both Sexes in the Act of Copulation”—speaks to the sexual knowledge offered within. Aristotle’s Masterpiece emphasizes both male and female partners’ enjoyment of the act. The book’s attention to pleasure was essential to its focus on procreative sex within marriage. Underpinning the Masterpiece is the theory that a woman must “cast forth her Seed to commix with the Man (which imploys a willingness in her to be a Copartner in the Act)” in order to conceive. With female and male partners playing an equally active role in “casting forth their seed,” both partners’ arousal and enjoyment was crucial to reproduction. Thus, women’s sexual appetite was accepted as a natural part of life, and the onset of menstruation credited with “[inciting] their Minds and Imaginations to Venery.” This first edition concludes with “a word of advice to both sexes in the time of copulation,” imparting to its readers a final lesson on the importance of foreplay: “[A husband] must entertain [his wife] with all kind of dalliance, wanton behaviour, and allurements to Venery but if he perceive her to be slow and more cold, he must cherish, embrace, and tickle her that she may take fire and be in flames to venery, for so at length the womb will strive and wax fervent with a desire of casting forth its own seed.” This is an especially appealing example of a landmark book in the history of women’s health, reproduction, and sex. The first edition of 1684 is known in three variant settings, all printed by J. How, priority unknown. ESTC records only the incomplete British Library copy (lacking the plates comprising the final gathering I) of our setting, which has line 11 of title ending “both”, line 18 of title ends “Ge-”, and the first line of the imprint ending “sold,” signature B5 is under the “nt Bl” of “effluent Blood” and on p.190 the fifth line from bottom begins with a capital “Q.” Provenance: “William Sweet [? scuffed] His book 1740 February the 21,” ownership inscription on the verso of frontispiece. Wing A3697fA. ESTC R504793. 12mo. Contemporary sheep, some wear. Woodcut frontispiece and 6 woodcuts of monstrous births (including repeat of frontispiece). Final gathering well thumbed and dog-eared with short tears at fore-edge with minor losses. A very appealing, honest copy.
  • $75,000
  • $75,000
book (2)

Photographs of the Holy Land and Egypt comprising: [I:] Sinai and Palestine; [II:] Lower Egypt, Thebes, and the Pyramids; [III:] Upper Egypt and Ethiopia; [IV:] Egypt, Sinai and Palestine. Supplementary Volume.

This is a splendid set of the best and most extensive collection of Frith's photographs of the Holy Land and Egypt. This edition's gold-toned photographs are much preferred over the earlier editions for their "stronger quality" (Gernsheim). Frith made three photographic expeditions to Egypt, Sinai, Ethiopia, and Jerusalem between 1856 and 1860. "On the first, he sailed up the Nile to the Second Cataract, recording the main historic monuments between Cairo and Abu Simbel. On the second, he struck eastwards to Palestine, visiting Jerusalem, Damascus and other sites associated with the life of Christ. The final expedition was the most ambitious, combining a second visit to the Holy Land with a deeper southward penetration of the Nile. His photographs of the temple at Soleb, 800 miles south of Cairo, represent a genuinely pioneering achievement. The clarity of his images proved to be of immense value to archaeologists. The photographs are also often powerfully composed, revealing an understanding of the poetic qualities of light that gives them lasting aesthetic value" (McKenzie, Grove Art). Upon his return to London, Frith published a selection of his photographs under the title Egypt and Palestine Photographed and Described, in two volumes with 76 photographs. The present set, with 144 photographs, nearly doubled the size of that work. It is preferable in every respect. The earlier work contained a haphazard assortment of images, while this massive four-volume edition is organized based on Frith's expeditions, giving them a narrative quality for the first time. Furthermore, many of the images appear here for the first time. Frith's publication of multiple images under the same title obscures the fact that much is new here. Most important, "the prints in this edition are of much stronger quality than those in the first edition having been gold-toned" (Gernsheim). These albums contain some of Frith's finest photographs, including the series of panoramic views of Jerusalem, the Sphinx and Great Pyramid of Giza, Karnak, the colossal sculpture at Abu Simbel, the Pool of Hezekiah, the Thebes Entrance to the Great Temple Luxor, The Osiridae Pillars and Great Fallen Colossus, and many others. They encompass spectacular views of Jerusalem (among the earliest images of the ancient city still obtainable), Cairo, the pyramids at Giza, Philae, and other views of now-lost or decayed sites in Egypt, as well as biblical sites in Palestine including the Jerusalem, Dead Sea, Gaza, Damascus, and other areas of what is now the modern state of Israel. Four volumes. Folio. 148 albumen photographs (37 in each volume), each approx. 6½ x 9 inches, mounted. Most signed in the negative. Original green and brown cloth, rebacked in morocco and cloth. Several text leaves with blind stamp, neat shelf numbers on title versos. Scattered foxing rarely affecting images, light edge wear to some leaves, occasional fading to prints. The photographs are generally in outstanding bright condition with rich tones and good contrast. This is a rare set of all four volumes of Frith's masterwork. Three-volume sets turn up occasionally, but examples including the fourth ("Supplementary") volume are rarely seen in the market.