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  • The devil is in the detail - no other copy located
    [ALPHABET GAME.] LETAILLE, Charles.
    LES LETTRES EN ACTION un petit alphabet Mnemonique accompagné d’un syllabaire complet avec fables et conte et de plusieurs séries de caractéres et de chiffres propres a assembler les mots et les nombres qui s’y trouvent. [n.p. but presumably Paris, n.d. but

    ca. 1840.]. Educational game, housed within attractive presentation box 185 x 140 x 20mm; box divided internally into two compartments, the larger central section retaining original silk tie, with narrower outer lateral compartment; set comprising 8 hand-coloured engraved alphabet cards embellished with gilt (presumably of 26) 62 x 90mm, 9 small cards (15 x 15mm) with black background with printed letters in red, yellow and green, 1 small card (15 x 15) with black background and the number 3, and 32 small bone pieces or ‘cards’ (60 x 16mm), each with printed paper label mounted on recto and verso giving syllable and associated image, (12 pieces are natural colour, 9 dyed red, 6 dyed yellow, and 5 dyed green, one…

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    ca. 1840.]. Educational game, housed within attractive presentation box 185 x 140 x 20mm; box divided internally into two compartments, the larger central section retaining original silk tie, with narrower outer lateral compartment; set comprising 8 hand-coloured engraved alphabet cards embellished with gilt (presumably of 26) 62 x 90mm, 9 small cards (15 x 15mm) with black background with printed letters in red, yellow and green, 1 small card (15 x 15) with black background and the number 3, and 32 small bone pieces or ‘cards’ (60 x 16mm), each with printed paper label mounted on recto and verso giving syllable and associated image, (12 pieces are natural colour, 9 dyed red, 6 dyed yellow, and 5 dyed green, one of which is slightly chipped); some general light soiling and wear visible; housed in the original highly decorative lidded box, upper cover with mounted lithograph title including hand-coloured vignette depicting the devil climbing through the letter D, surrounded by a group of children trying to chase him away; mounted title a little stained and soiled, with small hole in lower text with loss of a couple of letters and slightly interrupting meaning; all edges of lid with ornate gilt foil floral border, box edged with green and gilt decorative paper, lower box edged in gilt, old bookseller label on base lettered in ms, some wear to corners and extremities, but otherwise a most appealing set. A rare and striking mid 19th century French educational game for young children, by Charles Letaille, seemingly unknown to bibliographers, and with no further copies located.
    Whilst sadly seemingly incomplete - missing a number of letters of the alphabet, and almost all of the numbers, it is nevertheless a most attractive survivor, in the original highly decorative box with the eye-catching hand-coloured lithograph, signed ‘d’ Aubert et de Junca’, of a devil climbing through the letter ‘D’ on the upper lid, surrounded by a large crowd of children trying to drive him away.
    As the title on the upper lid states, the game was intended to introduce children to the alphabet and syllabary, through a series of mnemonic images, and by using familiar fables and tales, to help develop language skills in both an entertaining and instructive way. Clearly en entrepreneurial man, Letaille has clearly been inspired by Abbé Berthaud’s famous pedagogical work of 1743 ‘Quadrille’, and which was accompanied by 88 engraved cards, very similar to those found here, and proved to be a popular and highly visual educational aid for young children. The present game has ‘re-packaged’ Berthaud’s idea.
    The box includes eight charming hand-coloured engraved cards on thick paper, presumably of 26, and providing a mnemonic visual guide to the letters ‘B’ (Barque), ‘J’ (Jardinage), ‘N’ (Natation), ‘O’ (Oreille), ‘P’ (Pécheur), ‘U’ (Union), ‘V’ (verre), and finally ‘Y’ (yeux). All have been embellished with gilt, and six of these incorporate images of children engaged in fun pursuits such as sailing, gardening, fishing, swimming, and viewing the sky with a telescope. The accompanying 32 small double-sided bone pieces or ‘cards’ each have a mounted printed label, illustrating letters, digraphs, and trigraphs on one side, with a hand-coloured printed associated image on the reverse. Ten additional and much smaller printed thick card pieces are included, each with black background and coloured letter or number. Again, we assume these to be only a handful of the full original set.
    Whilst this could perhaps be a prototype or proof version of the game, therefore explaining the missing pieces, we have found one reference to the game, listed in the boxed game section of Hector Bossange’s trade ‘Catalogue: Libraire et commissionnaire pour l'étranger’ of 1841 (item 6662 p. 180), priced at 4 fr. 50 c. We have so far found no other record of it, however, and whilst all of the games of this period are no doubt scarce, it could be that the game did not find a ready market, perhaps being too complicated and convoluted, or that people cottoned on to the obvious plagiarism of Berthaud. The use of such a diabolical image on the upper lid, even if intended to serve a didactic purpose, may also have been a little off-putting!
    The lithographer of this striking image, is presumably Gabriel Aubert (fl.1836-1847), who together with his brother-in-law Charles Philipon (1800-1862) founded the publishing house ‘La Maison Aubert’. Specializing in social and political commentary and satire, notably the journals ‘La Caricature and Le Charivari (to which Honoré Daumier contributed caricatures of the king and ministers), they fell foul of the authorities. Philipon was jailed for a short time - and although Aubert escaped this punishment, he moved away from his political activities to set up his own lithographic establishment, and focus upon more mainstream concerns. The choice of this devilish image on a work for children, suggests that he may not have lost his enjoyment for being provocative, however. The engraver and publisher Charles Letaille specialised for a number of years in printing religious material, but during the 1830s began publishing a series of educational works and board games for children, including ‘Le Tour de Monde’ (ca. 1840), and ‘Tableau abrégé de l’histoire des voyages’ (a moveable book printed ca. 1845). Both are scarce.
    The survival of such games, scarce by their very nature, reveal much about 19th century French society, a period which saw the rise of the middle class in Europe who enjoyed a growth in both leisure time, and money to spend on such pleasurable pursuits. As a response to this new market, publishers such as Letaille, together with other publisher’s and map makers, increasingly turned their attention to the commercial manufacture of games aimed at families and children. As such, ‘Les Lettres en Action’ is an extremely scarce and striking example.

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  • One of the first dedicated medical journals - with a number of contemporary annotations
    ZODIACUS MEDICO-GALLICUS, by BLEGNY, Nicolas and Theophile BONET.
    BLEGNY, Nicolas and Theophile BONET.
    ZODIACUS MEDICO-GALLICUS, Sive miscellaneorum medico physicorum Gallicorum, Titulo recens in re medica exploratorum, unoquoque mense Parisiis Latinè prodentium Annus primus [- Annus Quintus]. Accessere ejusdem tractatus duo utilissimi, prior de herniis, posterior observationes circa luem veneream continens. Genevæ, Sumptibus Leonarid Chouët.

    1680-1682-1682-1685-1685. Five parts in four volumes, 4to; I. pp. [xvi] including initial blank, 270, 271-332, [10], with engraved frontispiece and 8 engraved plates (of which three folding, plate VI misbound at p. 252 rather than p. 152, and plate VIII misnumbered as VII); II. pp. [ii] blank, [vi], 264; with engraved frontispiece (the same as in vol. I) and 3 engraved plates; III. pp. 153 [ie 155], [11] index, [1] blank, with 3 engraved plates; IV. pp. [ii] half title for parts IV and V, [viii], 368, with engraved frontispiece (same as in previous volumess) and 3 engraved plates, (of which 2 folding); V. pp. [ii], 104, 145-160, 121-252, [4], with 1 engraved plate, and with tipped in contemporary handwritten…

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    1680-1682-1682-1685-1685. Five parts in four volumes, 4to; I. pp. [xvi] including initial blank, 270, 271-332, [10], with engraved frontispiece and 8 engraved plates (of which three folding, plate VI misbound at p. 252 rather than p. 152, and plate VIII misnumbered as VII); II. pp. [ii] blank, [vi], 264; with engraved frontispiece (the same as in vol. I) and 3 engraved plates; III. pp. 153 [ie 155], [11] index, [1] blank, with 3 engraved plates; IV. pp. [ii] half title for parts IV and V, [viii], 368, with engraved frontispiece (same as in previous volumess) and 3 engraved plates, (of which 2 folding); V. pp. [ii], 104, 145-160, 121-252, [4], with 1 engraved plate, and with tipped in contemporary handwritten note at p. 54, and with frequent mispaginations; volumes IV and V with shared half-title; with appealing woodcut title-page vignettes and head- and tail-pieces; all five volumes somewhat browned and foxed, with some occasional staining, usually from ink blotting; all five volumes with contemporary marginal annotations in brown ink, more frequent in the final two volumes, and with further ink notes listing items of interest on either rear endpaper, or rear paste-down of each volume; bound in contemporary vellum, titles in neat manuscript on spines, front inner hinges of Vols I and IV neatly repaired, covers a little soiled and stained, evidence of previous paper labels, extremities lightly bumped and worn; overall a good copy. First Latin edition, all published, and which despite its somewhat astrological sounding title, is an important and early medical periodical, and the brain-child of the controversial and colourful French physician Nicolas de Blégny (1652-1722), here anonymously translated and then continued into Latin by Théophile Bonet.
    It was begun in the previous year, in 1679, originally published as ‘Nouvelles découvertes sur toutes les parties de la médecine’. Though preceded by scientific journals such as the Transacations of the Royal Society, and Bartholin’s Acta medica et philosophica Hafniensia (1673-1680), Blegny’s contribution is considered to be the first dedicated medical periodical in the vernacular, aimed at, and therefore more accessible to, a wider readership than just traditional academic circles. ‘Its popularity is evidenced by its translation into German as Monatliche neueröffnet Anmerckungen (Hamburg, 1680). It was translated into Latin, and continued by Théophile Bonet as Zodiacus medico-gallicus (Geneva, 1680-1685)’ (Garrison, History of Medicine, p 281). Issued monthly, of the first French issue in January 1679 Blegny states in the preface that it was ‘his intention to bring together all those discoveries, experiences, and comments that may be found useful in the art of medicine. In order that he may continue to do so, he urges all physicians, surgeons, and apothecaries, both Galenic and chemical, those residing abroad as well as those in France, to send him their discoveries... Each issue, he says, will be sold for five sols, which, he adds, is just sufficient to reimburse him for the expenses entailed in publication’ (ibid p. 5).
    The present Latin translation includes a striking frontispiece representing Apollo, the patron of medicine, surrounded by the signs of the zodiac, with a simple but appealing scene of the city of Geneva seen below. With a ‘chapter’ as it were for each month of each year, the periodical provides a wealth of material, including accounts of recent medical activities, unusual and notable surgical and clinical case histories, notes on therapeutics and materia medica, discussions on practices such as bloodletting, autopsy reports, together with reports of incredible abnormalities and curiosities. Contributors for the various articles are named, with a number seemingly by Blegny himself, who also comments upon the work of his contributors, much as a modern editor would do. ‘Thus we have cases of vicarious menstruation, petrification of the semen, a wound of the heart, a hanged person restored to life, extraction of a urethral calculus followed by blindness... a hydatidiform mole, monstrous births... and transposition of the viscera. Besides these, however, there are lengthy disquisition's on topics of current interest, such as fevers and febrigures, on the nature of the teeth, their diseases and appropriate remedies, the generation of man, the use of quinquina in fevers, the letting of blood... on various aspects of physics... [and] one or two articles of an astrological nature’ (Nicholls, p. 201).
    The French version had a somewhat checkered career, and ran until 1683, though under variant titles of ‘Le temple d’Esculape (1680), and ‘Journal des Nouvelles Descouvertes (1681-1683). At that point the Faculty of Medicine finally withdrew his privilege, Blegny having constantly challenged their authority and that of the traditional medical communities, and having himself been accused of all kinds of nefarious activities. Undeterred, Blegny transferred editorship to a Dr Gautier in Amsterdam, publication resuming in 1684 under the title Mercure Savant. A rival in Paris, Abbé de la Roque, took up the mantle of a Parisian periodical, and in 1681 began his own Journal de Savants, which itself ran to 1685.
    Whilst the whole publication may have had a somewhat stormy and ultimately short-lived path, Blegny was nevertheless something of a pioneer in medical journalism, through his attempts to make medical information more widely and socially available.

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    Bibliography: See Kronick, “Devant le Deluge” and other essas on Early Modern Scientific Communication, ff. 1; see also Nicholls, ‘Nicolas de Blegny and the First Medical Periodical’ in The Canadian Medical Association Journal, August 1934, ff. 198; Wellcome II, p. 180; Krivatsy 1376; collated complete against both the BL copy (although that does include one additional half-title for part IV excluded in this copy), and the copy at Glasgow - although plates not bound in varying orders in each copy; further complete sets located at the Huntington, Harvard, Texas and McGill and the Wellcome.

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  • ABÉCÉDAIRE FRANÇAIS. by DESIR, Adeline.
    DESIR, Adeline.
    ABÉCÉDAIRE FRANÇAIS. Méthode A. Désir. Premier [ - dixième] tableau. Se vend chez l’auteur, 39 rue Jacob, Bourges, Imp. Ve Tardy-Pigelet et fils. [n.d. but ca.

    1873.]. Set of ten large, thick card tablets, 480 x 320 x 5mm; each with mounted printed sheet, with engraved vignette either at head or centrally, sheets all a little browned with some staining, soiling and scuffing or creasing in places, plain blue paper on verso, boards 1- 7 with the original green mottled paper edging (somewhat chipped and worn), boards 8 & 9 with later green cloth edging, and final board with no edging remaining and exposing the inner board; though extremities all somewhat rubbed, worn and a little dog-eared, otherwise a striking and rare survivor of an ephemeral teaching aid. A wonderfully striking and extremely scarce set of this didactic French ‘ABC’. The ‘Cours Désir’ was a private…

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    1873.]. Set of ten large, thick card tablets, 480 x 320 x 5mm; each with mounted printed sheet, with engraved vignette either at head or centrally, sheets all a little browned with some staining, soiling and scuffing or creasing in places, plain blue paper on verso, boards 1- 7 with the original green mottled paper edging (somewhat chipped and worn), boards 8 & 9 with later green cloth edging, and final board with no edging remaining and exposing the inner board; though extremities all somewhat rubbed, worn and a little dog-eared, otherwise a striking and rare survivor of an ephemeral teaching aid. A wonderfully striking and extremely scarce set of this didactic French ‘ABC’. The ‘Cours Désir’ was a private quasi-religious Catholic educational establishment set up by the Adeline Désir (1819-1875) in 1853. In particular it welcomed girls from the Parisian upper middle class, and its specific aim was to produce ‘cultured women’, with a focus upon religious education, and the arts, although Désir did place importance upon the role of science in the education of young women. The school took in full-and half boards, as well as some day pupils, from primary stage through to the baccalaureate, and also included a school for the training of women teachers. As the famous alumnus, Simone de Beauvoir, recounted in her ‘Memoirs of a Young Girl’, the school took care to distinguish itself from similar secular establishments, with the young girls enlisted into a ‘Eucharistic crusade’ as soon as they arrived. The number of hours of teaching a week did not exceed 12, and annual retreats were an important part of the school calendar. Students of the school were instantly recognisable by the manner of their bow: ‘un coup de pied droit en arrière avec un léger fléchissement de la jambe gauche’.
    The series of ten printed teaching aids, introduce the young child to the basic principles of the ‘Abécdaire français’, through a series of engraved images with accompanying moralistic printed text or verse, starting with the nativity, the farm, ‘Creator God’, a nest, the tale of the ‘Good little Marie’, ‘the two Ceciles’, the good brother, and the Innocent Saints, together with the remaining two boards giving an overview of the linguistic principles so far introduced.

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    Bibliography: See Butsch, Une éducatrice d’avant-garde, Adeline Désir 1819-1875, 1956; OCLC locates only a set of the first six boards at the BnF, and which have a variant imprint of "Paris imp. A. Dutemple" as opposed to "Bourges, Imp. Ve Tardy-Pigelet and son".

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  • Portraits of the most notable figures in medical history
    GALERIE MÉDICALE by DOIN, G. T. AND P. R. VIGNERON.
    DOIN, G. T. AND P. R. VIGNERON.
    GALERIE MÉDICALE dessineé et lithographiée Par Vigneron avec des Notices biographiques et littéraires par G. T. Doin, Docteur en médecine de la Faculté de Paris &a. 1e Livraison. Publiée par G. Engelmann, Editeur, Imprimeur Lithographe, rue Louis-le-grand No. 27. A Paris. [n.d. but 1825-1829].

    1825. Small folio; pp. [ii] original printed green paper wrapper to first fascicle bound in as general title, [64] of biographical text; with 32 lithograph portraits; somewhat foxed throughout, with the text leaves for Linné, Aldrovani, Celsus, Sydenham and Bartez rather browned, and those for Chaussier and Haller at the end of the work heavily browned; in black morocco backed pebble boards, spine in compartments with raised bands, ruled and lettered in gilt, with marbled endpapers, inner hinge cracked but holding firm, spine somewhat faded and lightly rubbed, extremities more prominently bumped and worn; with small library stamp on verso of final leaf ‘Don du Docteur Ch, Leroux, Hopital Civil de Versailles’. Rare. A complete set bound together of this…

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    1825. Small folio; pp. [ii] original printed green paper wrapper to first fascicle bound in as general title, [64] of biographical text; with 32 lithograph portraits; somewhat foxed throughout, with the text leaves for Linné, Aldrovani, Celsus, Sydenham and Bartez rather browned, and those for Chaussier and Haller at the end of the work heavily browned; in black morocco backed pebble boards, spine in compartments with raised bands, ruled and lettered in gilt, with marbled endpapers, inner hinge cracked but holding firm, spine somewhat faded and lightly rubbed, extremities more prominently bumped and worn; with small library stamp on verso of final leaf ‘Don du Docteur Ch, Leroux, Hopital Civil de Versailles’. Rare. A complete set bound together of this most striking lithograph ‘gallery’ of some of the most notable figures in medical history.
    The inspiration of the physician Guillaume Tell Doin (1794-1845), the lithographer Pierre Roche Vigneron (1789-1872), and the publisher G. Engelmann (1788-1839), according to a contemporary review in the ‘Archives générales de médecine; Journal publié par une société de médecins’ (Tome IX, p. 312, Sept 1825), the original intention was to produce one hundred portraits, the whole publication issued in a series of monthly fascicles containing four portraits together with accompanying biographical text. Normal copies on plain paper would cost 6fr, whilst more luxurious copies on China paper priced at 9fr. However, as later notices reveal, the plan was revised down to a proposed series of 10 fascicles - and indeed ultimately only eight were produced, with 32 fine lithograph portraits issued. No more were published, and being issued in individual fascicles, the plates more often than not, now appear individually. It is thus uncommon to find a bound copy of the complete series.
    In the present copy beginning with Hippocrates, (the order of the copy found at Padova is different) Doin and Vigneron have concentrated upon Western luminaries both ancient and modern, and thus we find included Galen, Leonard Fuchs, Andreas Vesalius, William Harvey, Albrecht von Haller, Philippe Pinel, Herman Boerhaave, Paul Joseph Barthez, and Edward Jenner. From the wider sphere, portraits of Carl Linnaeus and Nicolas Copernicus are also included, with the medieval Islamic polymath Averroes chosen as the sole representative from the Arabic world.

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    Bibliography: Brunet II-789 (edition de 1825-1826); Pauly, Bibliographie des sciences medicales, I, p. 59 noting that only parts 1-8 published: OCLC locates copies at the New York Academy of Medicine, Syraceuse, Yale, the NLM and the Wellcome.

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  • From a patient ‘on the mend’ to his Doctor and fellow ‘regulars’
    SCHOENBRUNN by [HYDROTHERAPY.] [AMUSING ENGRAVED BROADSIDE ILLUSTRATED IN WATERCOLOUR.]
    [HYDROTHERAPY.] [AMUSING ENGRAVED BROADSIDE ILLUSTRATED IN WATERCOLOUR.]
    SCHOENBRUNN Au Docteur Hegglin et aux habitants de Schoenbrunn. Souvenir d’un retapé. 1880-1885. [n.p., n.d. but ca. 1890s-1900].

    1880. Single sheet of thick artist paper, 315 x 245mm, with central oval view of Bad Schoenbrunn done in watercolour, surrounded by a series of satirical black and white silhouette sketches and vignettes seemingly engraved, though possibly executed in pen and ink; print mounted on card 435 x 345mm; small correction made to the lower central silhouette, with what appears to be a very small photograph image of the head of Peter Joseph Hegglin, pasted on to replace original image; some light spotting and browning, otherwise very striking. An enchanting and unique ‘souvenir’ from the famous health resort of Bad Schönbrunn in Menzingen. Sadly anonymous, and seemingly executed at the turn of the century, the striking broadside comprises an appealing…

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    1880. Single sheet of thick artist paper, 315 x 245mm, with central oval view of Bad Schoenbrunn done in watercolour, surrounded by a series of satirical black and white silhouette sketches and vignettes seemingly engraved, though possibly executed in pen and ink; print mounted on card 435 x 345mm; small correction made to the lower central silhouette, with what appears to be a very small photograph image of the head of Peter Joseph Hegglin, pasted on to replace original image; some light spotting and browning, otherwise very striking. An enchanting and unique ‘souvenir’ from the famous health resort of Bad Schönbrunn in Menzingen. Sadly anonymous, and seemingly executed at the turn of the century, the striking broadside comprises an appealing central watercolour vignette of the Spa buildings, set against an idyllic background of rolling hills, woodland and distant snow-capped mountains. This vignette is surrounded by a series of black and white silhouette vignettes, seemingly engraved, though resembling pen and ink drawings. Through this series of enchanting scenes, we are shown a number of the diversions, healthy activities, and treatments, on offer at the Spa. Those at the head of the broadside represent some of the outdoor and leisure activities available to patrons, including gentle walks in the countryside, a game of skittles, three men enjoying a game of billiards, musical soirees, painting, and nature watching. The silhouettes below the central oval focus more upon the treatments, a rather startled looking figure enduring various cold showers, towel wraps, and cold water hosing.
    Two figures can be seen at the tail of the image - one seemingly taking the pulse of the other, as he is holding a pocket watch in his hand. Above the two figures flies a wreath-bearing dove. Of added appeal, the head of the ‘doctor’ has been replaced with what appears to be a very small original photograph image. We presume this to be that of Peter Joseph Hegglin (1832-1893) himself, the founder of the Spa in 1857, although it could also be his son Joseph Hegglin-Kerckhoffs (1862-1920) who appears to have taken over the running of the establishment. It eventually closed in 1926.
    Sadly anonymous, the impression is that this wonderful ‘souvenir’ has been created by a previous patient ‘now on the mend’, and who has perhaps had a small number of these engravings published to give as gifts to his fellow patients and the good Doctor. A unique and most charming depiction.
    Two further attractive watercolour depiction's of the Spa are included with this image.

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  • How to Prevent hospital cross-infection
    INTRODUCTORY NOTES ON LYING-IN INSTITUTIONS. by [NURSING.] NIGHTINGALE, Florence.
    [NURSING.] NIGHTINGALE, Florence.
    INTRODUCTORY NOTES ON LYING-IN INSTITUTIONS. Together with a proposal for organising an Institution for Training Midwives and midwifery nurses. London: Longmans, Green, and Co.

    1871. 8vo, pp. xvi, 10; with fiven engraved architectural plans (one folding), and smaller plans within text, and numerous statistical tables; a number of early preliminary leaves discretely strengthened at gutter; lightly browned throughout, a couple of the plates slightly shaved along fore-edge clipping a couple of letters; ex-libris from Battersea Public Library, with their stamp on verso of plates, and at head of p. 1, tail of p. 99, and on final leaf; in modern black cloth, with red morocco label lettered in gilt on spine; with later book-plate of Margaret Yvonne Williams mounted on verso of title-page. First edition of this rare volume. In 1860 Nightingale laid the foundation of professional nursing with the establishment of her nursing…

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    1871. 8vo, pp. xvi, 10; with fiven engraved architectural plans (one folding), and smaller plans within text, and numerous statistical tables; a number of early preliminary leaves discretely strengthened at gutter; lightly browned throughout, a couple of the plates slightly shaved along fore-edge clipping a couple of letters; ex-libris from Battersea Public Library, with their stamp on verso of plates, and at head of p. 1, tail of p. 99, and on final leaf; in modern black cloth, with red morocco label lettered in gilt on spine; with later book-plate of Margaret Yvonne Williams mounted on verso of title-page. First edition of this rare volume. In 1860 Nightingale laid the foundation of professional nursing with the establishment of her nursing school at St Thomas’ Hospital in London. It was the first secular nursing school in the world, now part of King’s College London. The following year Nightingale secured funding to train midwives for service among the poor, and arranged for suitable young women to receive six months practical training in midwifery by professional physician-accoucheurs. This training programme continued for six years but was abandoned after an epidemic of puerperal fever – the greatest post-natal killer of the nineteenth century. A vicious and usually fatal form of septicaemia, puerperal or childbed fever was known to occur in maternity hospitals far more frequently than at home births, and to spread faster in crowded wards than in those with fewer patients. Its cause was unknown.
    Already interested in hospital design, this unfortunately event, along with the discovery that no trustworthy statistics of mortality of ‘lying-in institutions’ existed, prompted Nightingale to embark on gathering the facts presented in the current rare volume. From 1868 she constantly badgered Douglas Galton, Sutherland, Farr and many others to obtain the necessary facts and data to produce this, the most detailed work on the subject to have been published up to that time. In this precise statistical analysis of the facts, gathered from several sources across the major cites of Europe, Nightingale explores the mystery of puerperal fever and its possible causes. The work discusses the maternal death statistics of lying-in institutions and makes suggestions, with accompanying plans, for changes to hospital layouts to help prevent cross-infection between patients, and thus reduce maternal deaths, in particular stressing the necessity of good ventilation and condemning those hospitals with overcrowded wards. Published in 1871, just before Pasteur’s work on germ theory proved that the problem could be all but eradicated if doctors washed their hands more rigourously, this work remains clear, scholarly and engaging, and was widely well received, and proved instrument in helping popularise the graphical presentation of statistical data.

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    Bibliography: Bishop & Goldie, Bio-Bibliography of Florence Nightingale, 102.

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  • With 107 Coloured Film Samples
    LE FILM VIERGE PATHÉ. by [PATHÉ FILM.] [DIDIÉE, Louis].
    [PATHÉ FILM.] [DIDIÉE, Louis].
    LE FILM VIERGE PATHÉ. Manuel de Développement et de Tirage. Édite par les Établissements Pathé-Cinema … Paris,

    1926. 8vo, pp. xii, 155, [1] blank, with an initial blank; title-page printed in red and orange, text printed on a pale yellow ground; with numerous photographic illustrations and diagrams in the text, and six tables on three folding card mounts with a total 107 small samples of developed film (some slight oxidation to a number of examples, but overall in good condition); small tear at tail of p. 100 & 105, with some soiling to outer margin of p. 60, and some light marginal browning throughout; a good copy in contemporary quarter maroon morocco and marbled boards, spine ruled and lettered in gilt, tail of spine slightly nicked with minor loss, with small hole at tail of lower joint,…

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    1926. 8vo, pp. xii, 155, [1] blank, with an initial blank; title-page printed in red and orange, text printed on a pale yellow ground; with numerous photographic illustrations and diagrams in the text, and six tables on three folding card mounts with a total 107 small samples of developed film (some slight oxidation to a number of examples, but overall in good condition); small tear at tail of p. 100 & 105, with some soiling to outer margin of p. 60, and some light marginal browning throughout; a good copy in contemporary quarter maroon morocco and marbled boards, spine ruled and lettered in gilt, tail of spine slightly nicked with minor loss, with small hole at tail of lower joint, extremities a little rubbed and bumped. First edition of this important primary source book in the history of early cinema and film production. Published by Pathé, this extensive technical manual on the development of Pathé film for motion pictures was one of a small number of such manuals published during the 1920s by the leading producers of film stock, and contains not only technical information on the colouring systems used at the time by the motion picture industry, but is notable for including sets of illustrations made of actual pieces of original nitrate film. ‘These books, together with a handful of other primary sources, constitute the basis of our knowledge of a relatively neglected topic in the study of early cinema: the effects achieved by colouring film stock’ (Paolo Chechi Usai, 'The Color of Nitrate' p. 22, in Richard Abel, ed., Silent Film, 1996).
    Four basic methods of producing coloured films existed before the introduction of technicolour. These were: hand colouring (the earliest and most basic), stencil-colouring (pathécolor was a refined version), tinting (staining the film uniformly) and toning (redeveloping in a chemical bath to tint the darker, developed portions of the film only). All are illustrated here, as is the combined use of tinting and toning; 'only a relatively small section of the Pathé text deals with film coloring, but the three foldout cardboard tables of illustrations with 107 individual nitrate frames are the most complete ever published' (Paolo Chechi Usai, 'The Color of Nitrate' in Richard Abel, ed., Silent Film, 1996). Samples show the influence of under- and over-exposure; the effect of temperature on development; films with a coloured base and/or chemically toned; mordanting (for intensification); pathécolor, etc. Also included are samples of the 9.5mm home-cinema film introduced by Pathé in 1922 as Pathé-Baby. The text includes details on the use of Pathé machinery and the chemical recipes for development.

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  • A comprehensive work with appealing naive woodcut illustrations
    TRACTATUS DE AQUAEDUCTU by PECCHIO, Francesco Maria.
    PECCHIO, Francesco Maria.
    TRACTATUS DE AQUAEDUCTU Quomodo constituatur. Ex quibus Aquis. Quot modis. Quis possit constituere. De praescriptione decennali, vicenalis, & immemorabili. De Possessorio, & Petitorio in materia Aquarum. Opus curiosu, et valde exoptatum. Omnibus Jurisprudence Professoribus in soro versantibus ad quotidianas Aquarum controversias iustè dirimendas utile, ac necessarium... Ticini Regii, [Pavia] Ex Officina Jo. Andreas Magrii, Impress. Ciuit in Via nova...

    [1670]-1673-1680-1686. Four volumes, small folio, pp. [xxxviii], 412, [62], possibly without initial first blank; [xl], 466, lxxvi; [xxxii], 291, [1] blank, [68]; [xii], lxxix, [i] blank, 570, [9]; with engraved frontispiece portrait of the dedicatee Bartholomeo Arese in Vol II, engraved vignette at head of his dedication, woodcut printer’s devices, copious woodcut head- and tail-pieces and 39 appealing woodcut diagrams and illustrations (of which 25 are full-page, 6 of which are folding); overall quite clean and crisp, with some occasional faint marginal dampstaining, a few small stains, and some gatherings somewhat browned, Vol IV with some noticeable foxing, small tear in text of Vol II at p. 351 due to paper flaw but with no, with slight loss of text…

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    [1670]-1673-1680-1686. Four volumes, small folio, pp. [xxxviii], 412, [62], possibly without initial first blank; [xl], 466, lxxvi; [xxxii], 291, [1] blank, [68]; [xii], lxxix, [i] blank, 570, [9]; with engraved frontispiece portrait of the dedicatee Bartholomeo Arese in Vol II, engraved vignette at head of his dedication, woodcut printer’s devices, copious woodcut head- and tail-pieces and 39 appealing woodcut diagrams and illustrations (of which 25 are full-page, 6 of which are folding); overall quite clean and crisp, with some occasional faint marginal dampstaining, a few small stains, and some gatherings somewhat browned, Vol IV with some noticeable foxing, small tear in text of Vol II at p. 351 due to paper flaw but with no, with slight loss of text due to abrasion on p. 417, upper margins of few few leaves of Vol III with stab mark, Vol IV p. 145 with old repair at upper margin, and small hole with minor loss at p. 344; with contemporary inscription ‘Ex libris Malsoni’ on titles and half-titles; in contemporary vellum, spines in compartments with raised bands, with author and title in brown ink in contemporary ms, previous paper labels at head of Vols I and II (and evident on Vols III and IV), spines somewhat worn with loss of vellum along bands, with further splits at head and tail of joints, most prominent in volume I, Vol III with small stab hole in upper cover, covers a little soiled and stained, extremities rubbed and somewhat worn; overall an appealing unsophisticated set. First edition of this rare and exhaustive 17th century scientific, technical and legal work on aqueducts, highly comprehensive in scope and covering a wide range of topics including the regulation of rivers, problems of hydraulics, and water rights and supply.
    Francesco Maria Pecchi (1618-1693) was a professor of canon law at Pavia from 1659 to 1687 and Archdeacon of the Cathedral of Pavia, where he is buried. As a result of Italy’s mountainous geography and extensive coastline, the science of training and regulating rivers developed to its highest degree in Italy by the end of the 17th century. It was in this field that Pecchi was to make his name, and in the history of law he is known as the father of modern water legislation as a result of this important treatise on civil and cannon law, together with his other extensive work ‘Tractatus de Servitutibus’ (1689).
    The numerous woodcut diagrams and tables illustrating cases of water rights have a beautiful and most appealing naivety. It was reprinted in 1707, and again in 1840 - a testament to its importance and unsurpassed pertinence and scholarship.

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    Bibliography: Riccardi, II, 254. Sotheran, First Supplement, 6874–“rare.”; OCLC locates copies at Berkeley, Yale, and Harvard Law libraries, Iowa, Michigan and Chicago.

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  • FRAMED FRENCH MANUSCRIPT PERPETUAL CALENDAR, by [PERPETUAL CALENDAR.]
    [PERPETUAL CALENDAR.]
    FRAMED FRENCH MANUSCRIPT PERPETUAL CALENDAR, Neatly penned in ink and finished in brown wash and hand-colour, with additional floral paper collage laid down. Signed on the outer volvelle ‘Florent Chausson, Fecit. [n. p but France, and n.d. ca. 1800.]

    1800. Heavy card sheet, 396 x 265 mm, with eight cut-out windows, neatly drawn in pen and ink (with draughtsman’s pin and guide marks faintly visible), finished by hand in brown wash, with additional green coloured collage of a flower in bloom, with two internal dials/volvelles, the inner 155 mm in diametre, the outer 215 mm in diametre, both neatly lettered in manuscript in brown ink, the inner dial with additional charming hand-coloured illustrations of the signs of the zodiac, volvelles held in place by a later metal disk and brass screw; the calendar itself is quite heavily browned and soiled, notably in the centre of the upper margin, with some small abrasions, slight loss to the collage, small loss…

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    1800. Heavy card sheet, 396 x 265 mm, with eight cut-out windows, neatly drawn in pen and ink (with draughtsman’s pin and guide marks faintly visible), finished by hand in brown wash, with additional green coloured collage of a flower in bloom, with two internal dials/volvelles, the inner 155 mm in diametre, the outer 215 mm in diametre, both neatly lettered in manuscript in brown ink, the inner dial with additional charming hand-coloured illustrations of the signs of the zodiac, volvelles held in place by a later metal disk and brass screw; the calendar itself is quite heavily browned and soiled, notably in the centre of the upper margin, with some small abrasions, slight loss to the collage, small loss to 1cm at lower left margin, the volvelles with signs of rubbing where turned, inner volvelle with evidence of what appear to be contemporary corrections; the calendar set within a heavy oak surround, behind hinged glass ‘lid’ fixed in place with a metal clasp, in an old gilt wood frame 435 x 305 mm, retaining two hanging hooks at the upper margin, frame somewhat knocked and worn, with prominent wood knot internally with some loss, and visible from the rear and which leaves a hole along the top edge of the frame and has led to the central darkening and soiling of upper calendar edge; despite the evident signs of use, nevertheless a charming, neatly executed, and scarce survivor. An evocative and, despite its signs of use, striking example of a paper perpetual calendar, of particular appeal having been skilfully done by hand in ink, brown wash, and hand-colour, seemingly the work of ‘Florent Chausson’, who has signed both of the inner volvelles. The outer ‘clock-face’ has been neatly drawn in pen and ink and finished in brown wash. A closer inspection reveals and small pinned guide-marks used by Chausson with his draughtsman’s tools. An ornate arch design is supported by twin columns on a faux-marble base, and is surmounted by a finial and a fine armillary sphere and globe. A green paper collage of a flower in bloom has also been added. Eight ‘windows’ have been neatly cut out. Attached by a later central pin, are two ‘dials’ or volvelles, the outer marked by hand with days of the month which can be set against a fixed scale of days of the week marked on the front board, this latter scale noting both the day, its corresponding planetary symbol, and planet name. The inner volvelle rotates independently, and is set to the month. Relevant information is then visible in six windows: the time of sunrise (being the average for that month), time of sunset, length of day, length of night, Zodiacal sign symbol (beautifully drawn and hand-colored), and list of the principal feast days. An unusual, charming, and skilfully executed work of art and science. By its very fragile nature and design, a rare survivor, despite the signs of wear: proof, if needed, that it was indeed well used and served its’ purpose!

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  • ANLEITUNG ZUM GEBRAUCHE DER GANZ NEUERFUNDENEN... by [PUBLISHING HISTORY]. [MANUSCRIPT PROOF COPY.] DOBNER, Johann.
    [PUBLISHING HISTORY]. [MANUSCRIPT PROOF COPY.] DOBNER, Johann.
    ANLEITUNG ZUM GEBRAUCHE DER GANZ NEUERFUNDENEN... Berechnungs-ab und Aufstragsaparate von Spiegelglas... Mit drei lithographierten tafeln, und vier tabellen, Malczka,

    1842. Bound manuscript in German, 4to; pp. [ii], xii, 128; with three folding illustrations and two double-sided folding tables; some occasional light browning and soiling, but otherwise clean and crisp; in contemporary green publisher’s decorative moired cloth, spine lettered in gilt, light wear to head and tail of spine with minor loss, covers very slightly soiled and scratched; a most attractive copy. A unique and finely written author’s fair copy, ready, and intended for printing as is shown by the note on the title page which refers to the plates as lithographs. The work was published in the same year (we have located only two copies), and it describes in detail a sophisticated surveyor’s table which, through a mirror system…

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    1842. Bound manuscript in German, 4to; pp. [ii], xii, 128; with three folding illustrations and two double-sided folding tables; some occasional light browning and soiling, but otherwise clean and crisp; in contemporary green publisher’s decorative moired cloth, spine lettered in gilt, light wear to head and tail of spine with minor loss, covers very slightly soiled and scratched; a most attractive copy. A unique and finely written author’s fair copy, ready, and intended for printing as is shown by the note on the title page which refers to the plates as lithographs. The work was published in the same year (we have located only two copies), and it describes in detail a sophisticated surveyor’s table which, through a mirror system and sliding rules, enables topographical features to be directly plotted and reduced or enlarged to any desired scale. This ingenious device, was available for purchase from Dobner himself, and indeed he subsequently patented his invention (a photo-copy of the abridgement is included with the work), and which was duly recorded in the 1844 ‘Sammlung der Gesetze für das Erzherzogthum Oesterreich unter der Ens’ (Collections of laws for the Archduchy of Austria)’ (Vol. 53, pp. 460-461). According to the patent specification, the instrument was designed for copying, enlarging or reducing maps, plans or charts, with greater accuracy than with the use of a pantograph, and would enable the user to produce a permanent record of a surveyed area, and can be used without having to puncture existing maps with a compass. A contemporary review in the Oekonomische Neuigkeiten und Verhandlungen, whilst deploring the clunkiness of the author’s writing style, which he attributes to Dobner’s Hungarian origin, nevertheless recommends the benefits of the invention.
    In his preface, Dobner cites the work of Georg Winckler of Mariabrunn, who in 1809 devised and publicised his ‘Spiegel-lineals’ instrument, and which may well have inspired Dobner to create his own direct plotting topographical instrument, with the aim of reducing the need for manual drawing and calculation when surveying.
    The work is dedicated to Anton Karl, Count Pallfy von Erdol (1793-1879), a member of a notable Austro-Hungarian family, with estates at Malaczka. Dobner describes himself on the title page as an ‘Engineer’, and indeed the ‘Sammlung’ notes that Dobner, a noble from ‘Dettendorf und Rantenhof’ was engineer to the Pallfy family. We have been able to find little further biographical information about him, but it seems possible that he was born János Dobner de Rantenhof et Dettendorf in Győr in Hungary 1807, only 70 miles from Malaczka.

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    Bibliography: OCLC locates only one copy at Frankfurt at the Johann Christian Senckenberg University Library, with KVK locating one further copy at the Austrian National Library (available online).

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  • Innovative and compact merging of word and image offering an unprecedented vision of the human body
    THE EDINBURGH STEREOSCOPIC ATLAS OF ANATOMY by WATERSTON, David and Edward BURNET.
    WATERSTON, David and Edward BURNET.
    THE EDINBURGH STEREOSCOPIC ATLAS OF ANATOMY New Edition. Section I Abdomen. Contents 50 Plates. [- Section V Lower Limbs]. [Copyright T. C. & E. Jack, Edinburgh, & 34 Henrietta Street, London. W.C.] [n.d. but ca.

    1907.]. Together five boxes, Sections I-V, 240 x 190 x 80mm, and with the accompanying wooden and metal viewer; I. Abdomen containing 50 thick cards with mounted stereographs on each; II. Perimeum, Pelvis, and Thorax, containing 50 thick cards with mounted stereographs on each, box without the internal cloth tie; III. Thorax, containing 52 thick cards with mounted stereographs (Axilla no 1 stained); IV. Central nervous System, containing 52 thick cards with mounted stereographs (a couple or cards with ink underlining); V. Lower Limb, containing 46 thick cards with mounted stereographs; in all, 250 cards; cards all a little browned and lightly foxed, but otherwise good, stereographs all good; in the original dark pink cloth boxes, all five with title…

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    1907.]. Together five boxes, Sections I-V, 240 x 190 x 80mm, and with the accompanying wooden and metal viewer; I. Abdomen containing 50 thick cards with mounted stereographs on each; II. Perimeum, Pelvis, and Thorax, containing 50 thick cards with mounted stereographs on each, box without the internal cloth tie; III. Thorax, containing 52 thick cards with mounted stereographs (Axilla no 1 stained); IV. Central nervous System, containing 52 thick cards with mounted stereographs (a couple or cards with ink underlining); V. Lower Limb, containing 46 thick cards with mounted stereographs; in all, 250 cards; cards all a little browned and lightly foxed, but otherwise good, stereographs all good; in the original dark pink cloth boxes, all five with title and explanatory labels on fore-edges (labels are somewhat browned, scuffed and faded in places), all five boxes somewhat faded, frayed and worn, with some splitting to joints, Box 3 most noticeably worn; some wear evident on viewer. ‘New edition’ of this remarkable, graphic, and at times gruesome pathological atlas of anatomy prepared under the auspices of the Department of Anatomy at the University of Edinburgh, and of particular appeal in retaining the original wooden and metal stereoscopic viewer, most often now missing. The five ‘volumes’ of boxed illustrations (resembling books with spine titles and designed to fit library shelves), contain some 250 thick cards each mounted with stereoscopic images together with accompanying explanatory text, and provide a vivid, realistic and unprecedented three dimensional view of the entire human body, helping students to gain important insights into the structure and spaces of the body.
    The invention of photography had a big impact on anatomical teaching, but, like drawings, was limited by being a two dimensional representation. Stereoscopy in fact predates photography, but its mass appeal depended entirely upon the development of photographic processes. Originally little more than an optical toy, once it was amalgamated with photography it became a uniquely powerful medium. ‘Stereo photography combined the work of two Victorian inventors, Sir Charles Wheatsone and Sir David Brewster, who used photography to popularise their discoveries. Stereo negatives when exposed in a camera produced two almost identical photographs which were then placed in a viewer that enabled them to be seen three dimensionally’ (Powerhouse Museum). Stereographs, double images (taken from positions equivalent to those of the left and right eyes) presented side-by-side on a flat card and looked at through a special viewer, were displayed to great effect at the Great Exhibition in 1851, and quickly became something of a phenomenon. Initially largely for domestic use, the educational opportunities, especially for the medical profession, were soon recognised. Improved photographic technology in the second half of the 19th century further simplified the production of stereographs. The first first atlas of medicine was produced by Albert Neisser (1855-1916), who between 1894 and 1911 produced 57 boxed sets.
    The date of the original edition of The Edinburgh Stereoscopic Atlas of Anatomy is unclear though is believed to be around 1905-1906 (based on contemporary reviews, although Roberta McGrath in ‘Seeing Her Sex’ p. 144 suggests 1890), with this, the ‘New Edition’ thought to date from 1907. David Waterston, was a lecturer and senior demonstrator at the Anatomical Department of Edinburgh and prepared the anatomical dissections. The first edition was issued by the Caxton Publishing Company. Over time, it was expanded to ten volumes, that included 324 stereographs, with issues also produced in the US and Canada. An equally graphic ‘Edinburgh Stereoscopic Atlas of Obstetrics’ was issued in 1908-1909, edited by George Simpson and Edward Burnet.

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  • A veritable Who’s Who of European High Society at the height of the Belle Époque
    LARGE OBLONG SOUVENIR ALBUM OF CALLING CARDS COMPILED BY THE NOTED VICTORIAN CONCERT PIANIST by [WOMEN IN SOCIETY.] DIETZ, Catinka de.
    [WOMEN IN SOCIETY.] DIETZ, Catinka de.
    LARGE OBLONG SOUVENIR ALBUM OF CALLING CARDS COMPILED BY THE NOTED VICTORIAN CONCERT PIANIST Catinka Mackenzie de Dietz, containing over 400 calling cards, greeting cards, printed menus, invitations, mourning cards, and post cards, from friends, colleagues and associates from across European High Society. [n.p.], [n.d. but ca.

    1890-1901.]. Large oblong album, 270 x 420 mm; ff. 33 leaves of thick paper 264 x 410mm; with 399 late Victorian calling cards, greeting cards, menus, invitations etc neatly mounted and organised, with a further 7 items loosely inserted, front and rear endpapers also used, four pages unused, and one calling card blank; a number of the cards signed or with manuscript messages of greeting, several of the mounted items with neat manuscript annotations penned below by Dietz; some light foxing, soiling throughout, with some offsetting and see-through caused by the glue, a few cards now a little faded, one or two slightly creased, and with a couple of small marginal tears; An extraordinary turn of the century personally compiled…

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    1890-1901.]. Large oblong album, 270 x 420 mm; ff. 33 leaves of thick paper 264 x 410mm; with 399 late Victorian calling cards, greeting cards, menus, invitations etc neatly mounted and organised, with a further 7 items loosely inserted, front and rear endpapers also used, four pages unused, and one calling card blank; a number of the cards signed or with manuscript messages of greeting, several of the mounted items with neat manuscript annotations penned below by Dietz; some light foxing, soiling throughout, with some offsetting and see-through caused by the glue, a few cards now a little faded, one or two slightly creased, and with a couple of small marginal tears; An extraordinary turn of the century personally compiled album of printed calling cards and correspondence, received over a number of years by Catinka [also Cathinka] Mackenzie de Dietz (1813-1901), noted concert pianist and former pianist to the Queen of Bavaria. As such, it throws a fascinating light upon her social circle, forming a veritable ‘Who’s Who’ of European Royalty and High Society, and made even more appealing by her acerbic and often slightly scandalous annotations! in the original ribbed brown publisher’s cloth, ruled in blind with ‘Souvenir’ in gilt on upper cover, lower joint split at tail, spine somewhat sunned, small loss of cloth on upper cover, rear cover crinkled and stained at tail, with some wear along upper margin, corners a little bumped and worn. Dietz ‘made her Paris debut on 7 February 1836 at the Salle Pleyel with the first movement of Hummel's Concerto in A Minor and Kalkbrenner's staple debut piece - his Grand Duo in D for two pianos, Op. 128 - with Thalberg. Her career revolved around placements at royal courts. By 1840 she was pianist to the queen of Bavaria; the following year she played at the French court and was appointed pianist to the queen of the French in 1845. She composed salon pieces, played regularly for Queen Victoria, and was reported to have written an oratorio for which Queen Victoria accepted the dedication. Her pianistic style was Classical, firmly within the Kalkbrenner tradition. She sometimes published under her married name, Mackenzie von Dietz.’ (Katherine Ellis, "Female Pianists and Their Male Critics," Journal of the American Musicology Society Vol. 50 2/3, p. 359). She married William Mackenzie Shaw, Managing Director of the Antwerp and Rotterdam Railways, and they apparently divided their time between Paris and Saint Germain, no doubt entertaining quite extensively, if the present array of cards is anything to go by. Amongst the small number of loosely inserted additional material, are the two black-edged mourning invitations printed by Catinka for her husband after his death on December 7th 1890.
    The souvenir album houses predominantly elegantly printed calling cards, though Dietz has also retained and mounted a handful of greeting and Christmas cards, invitations, menus, and clippings. European Royalty are well represented, with several cards given by Princes, Princesses, Counts and Countesses, Viscountesses, and Barons. A high percentage of the cards have been given by other women. Others reveal her various artistic relationships, and as a whole, the album provides a wonderful snap-shot of social connections and late Victorian high society. A number have been inscribed by the giver with messages of esteem, whilst of particular appeal, Dietz herself has frequently added a little note below the card (usually in French, though sometimes English), and which often prove to be quite humorous and sometimes a little acerbic, adding some delicious flavour to this Who’s Who of the Belle Époque.
    Under the card for ‘Le Comte de Barck’ she has written ‘c'est dangereuse de s'embarquer avec lui?; Alderman Wilson of Beckenham apparently gave very good dinners; Mrs Crawford Bromehead apparently ‘found the tenors kinder than her husband,’; Mrs Baker ‘was a prim lady’; Mrs R. E. Hamer ‘Her pretty face greeted her two husbands’; under the card for Lady Caroline Murray ‘Sa famille ne payait pas ses dettes’; under the card for M. & Madame Ernest du Fresnel ‘Out of sight, out of mind’; for the painter James Frutier she notes that he ‘sells spinach’; E. Nathan, ‘miaule sur son violoncelle et fait le tendre auprès du beau sexe’, whilst Camille Philipp ‘est sourd et pourtant la déesse de la mélodie lui prodigue ses faveurs’ (is deaf and yet the godess of melody lavishes him with favours). The lawyer Malioche apparently ‘does business with lost funds’, whilst she describes Georges Stigelli as ‘a heavy German who made himself an Italian singer by adding an i to his name’; whilst Albert Anschutz, a professor of piano, ‘gives music lessons, cleans, composes lullabies and prepares baths for Madame’.
    Increasing attention is being given to the study of Victorian card ephemera, including calling cards, of which the present album provides a comprehensive and unique example. As the 19th century progressed, rules of deportment became more rigid, and cards helped define the complicated new social code and express its growing sentimentality. Barbara Rusch provides some insight into their importance in her essay ‘The Secret Life of Victorian Cards’ on the Ephemera Society of America’s website. ‘Cards were the ambassadors of social convention, and their subtle, covert messages were well understood by those who used them as tools in the creation of an image of respectability in an increasingly demanding and judgemental world. Particularly noteworthy are cards of social and cultural significance such as the visiting card. In Our Deportment, published in 1890, John Young observes: “To the unrefined or under-bred, the visiting card is but a trifling and insignificant bit of social paper; but to the cultured disciple of social law, it conveys a subtle and unmistakable intelligence. Its texture, style of engraving, and even the hour of leaving it to combine to place the stranger, whose name it bears, in a pleasant or a disagreeable attitude, even before his manners, conversation and face have been able to explain his social position.”... The use of cards in 19th-century daily life represented and helped define class, breeding, and status. They were a form of social contract, a common language, and ideology through which the Victorians communicated with one another, maintained moral standards and disseminated popular culture’ (Rusch).

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