Reading Matters

20th April 2018

With the onset of e-readers, it may seem like printed books are a thing of the past.  However, it appears not always to be the case as our thriving antiquarian and collectable book department can demonstrate as our book sales continue to be as popular as ever.  In our sale in Carlisle on 24th January we had a number of fascinating volumes that certainly had bidders competing strongly for!

An interesting book linking Virginia Woolf, the pioneering feminist author, and her sister, the artist Vanessa Bell featured highly.  Both Woolf and Bell were members of the artistic and free-living Bloomsbury Group and the book in question is a volume of short stories by Virginia Woolf entitled “Monday or Tuesday”.  The book was rather notorious as Leonard referred to it as “one of the worst printed books ever published” owing to its rather primitive, although arguably stylish, appearance, and the many typographical mistakes in the text.  Only 1,000 copies were printed; thus its relative rarity and attraction to Bloomsbury collectors, keen competition online and in the room brought the hammer down at an impressive £520. 

The sale also included a first edition of the famous “Winnie the Pooh” by A.A. Milne.  Published in 1926, it contains E.H. Shepard`s illustrations of the famous bear and endpapers with a map of the “100 Aker Wood”, it fetched £240.  Complementing this, were two copies of the fine 50th anniversary limited edition of Milne`s “Now We Are Six”, again with Shepard illustrations.  Published in 1977 in an edition of only 300 signed by the author`s son Christopher Milne, these books were each in a handsome maroon morocco gilt binding with a slip case, the hammer fell at £240 and £220 on these.

It might be worth dusting off that box of books in the attic!  We are always happy to help you discover if there are any of value and our regular book sales are definitely worth browsing if you are looking for interesting volumes for your library.