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Documents & Manuscripts

Discover hand written letters, original manuscripts, historical documents, diaries, and so much more in this section. There's even a sub category for Illuminated Manuscripts, for those who search for gold! As the world's largest independent marketplace for new, used and rare books, you always get the best in service and value when you buy from, and all of your purchases are backed by our return guarantee.

Documents & Manuscripts Books & Ephemera



    St. John's Church, Truro, N.S. by Dunphy, Clifford R. And MacPhee, Harvey W

    Truro, N.S.: St. John's Centennial Committee, 1973 Grey photocover stapled booklet. Not a history, but a retelling of the story of construction in 1873. Some original manuscript notes by Archdeacon J.A Kaulbach and a manuscript by Rev. W. P. Robertson from 1913 are cited. Bibliography. . First( No Additional Printings). Soft Cover. Very Good/No Jacket. Illus. by Photos. 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall.



    Bolinas Eyewash by Berrigan, Ted, and Tom Clark

    Bolinas, CA: Ted Berrigan and Tom Clark, undated [written 1971]. 1st edition. Soft cover. Fine/No Jacket (as issued). Fine. 4to,105 leaves (printed one-side), spiral-bound with color reproduction of the original Ted Berrigan MS cover. An exceedingly scarce reproduction of the original manuscript of this 1971 collaboration between Ted Berrigan and Tom Clark.



    The register of the Guild of Knowle in the county of Warwick 1451 1535 from the original manuscript in the Public Reference Library Birmingham - Warwickshire by Bickley, W.B. [ed]

    Walsall: For the Archaeological Section of the Birmingham and Midland Institute, printed by W.H. Robinson, 1894 xlii, [vi], 272, xxxix pages + plates. Numbered 62 and signed by the publisher. Leather spine and green cloth covered boards, some wear. Ink owner's name to the front pastedown. A heavy volume, extra postage will be required to send outside the UK. Browning to the pages adjoining the plates. Binding a bit shaken and rear hinge loose. Pages top edge gilt, others untrimmed which are browned and soiled.. Hard Cover. Good.



    The life of Mr Robert Blair, minister of St. Andrews, containing his autobiography, from 1593 to 1636, with supplement to his life, and continuation of the history of the times to 1680, by his son-in-law, Mr. William Row, minister of Ceres by Blair, Robert 1593-1666.; M'Crie, Thomas 1797-1875

    Edinburgh: Printed for the Wodrow Society, 1848. Mr. Blair was born at Irvine anno 1593. This is a copy in the original black embossed cloth, with gilt decoration to centre of the upper cover and with gilt titles to spine. Very lightly rubbed at the extremities, light chips to spine head,itself a little dulled. Firm, tight square copy. Text block very nice indeed. Edited for the Wodrow Society, from the original manuscript. ; By Thomas M'Crie, D.D..Printer details from verso of title page: James Walker, Printer, 6. James's Court, Edinburgh. xxiv, 627, [1] p : ill. ; 22.1 cm. Includes bibliographical references and index. [ Location: BR2 / 1 ]. First Edition. Hard Cover. Very Good - See below/images. 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall.



    ORIGINAL TYPSECRIPT OF UNTITLED STORY (Published as Geometry of Love) by Cheever, John

    Near Fine. Quarto. Offered is a near fine twelve page unbound typed manuscript typed recto only. There are several holograph corrections, probably by the author, but this MS is not signed. A working title, this story later appeared under the title "Geometry of Love" in the Saturday Evening Post and "The Stories of John Cheever." With "Russell & Volkening, Inc., Literary Agents. 551 Fifth Avenue, New York, N. Y. 10017" red ink stamp on cover page. Typscript pages are age toned.



    A Report of Divers Cases in Pleas of the Crown, Adjudged and Determined . . . With Directions for Justices of the Peace and Others . . . From the Original Manuscript, under his own Hand [etc.] by John Kelyng

    London: Printed for Isaac Cleave, next Door to Serjeants-Inn [etc.], 1708. Contemporary calf, quite worn, rebacked, embrowning; a sound copy First edition of the first reports exclusively devoted to English criminal law, reflecting Kelyng's career both while a criminal lawyer and after becoming Chief Justice of King's Bench; seen posthumously through the press by Lord Holt



    Manuscript on paper on mine surveying, with 12 large & fine folding manuscript plates, heightened in grey, blue, pink, & yellow wash by (CLAUSTHAL: MINE SURVEYING)

    40 leaves (the final blank). Small folio (332 x 210 mm.), orig. paste-paper boards (spine & extremities somewhat worn), uncut. [Clausthal?: ca. 1815]. A fine and legible manuscript instructional manual on techniques and problems of mine surveying. The text is divided into five chapters: "Von der Vorbereitung zum Markscheiden" ("On preparations for measuring the area in which mining may be carried out"), "Von Bennenung der Gänge und Klüfte" ("On the naming of seams and fissures"), "Vom Observiren" ("On Observations"), "Vom Vermaß oder Verbestimmung eines Grubenfelds" ("On measuring and defining a mining claim"), and "Von Wasserfällen, Wasserleitungen und Tiefbau" ("On waterfalls, water conduits and underground mining"). This manuscript was probably prepared in 1815 - plate X has the entry "Markscheide 1.7.15" - at the newly founded mining school at Clausthal, the famous mining town of the Harz Mountains in Lower Saxony (the fine plates name mining locations in the area). The most attractive plates - all of which contain a number of figures - depict mine shafts, mine surveying methods, cartographical considerations, techniques of prospecting and identification of mineral deposits, problems of ownership rights, and the constant problems of flooding. All the plates are finely drawn in black ink and have been heightened in grey, blue, pink, and yellow wash. Internally fine. Stamp of Georg Riemschneider (1888-1946), "Oberbergrat" of Clausthal-Zellerfeld.



    Firstfruits [First Fruits] Signed] by Astley, Charles

    Published by Elliot Stock 7 Paternoster Row, London First edition 1919. 1919., 1919. First edition publisher's original paper covered card wraps, scarlet stamping to spine and upper panel. 8vo 7¼" x 5" 64 pp. SIGNED by the author to title page. Also includes the original manuscript of "On a Chestnut Falling at Our Feet", written on the back of an envelope, post mark 1910, with heavy pencil annotation by the author, and SIGNED. This letter is tipped next to the poem as it appears in the book. Also includes a SIGNED insert of 'Afoot in Kent', reprinted from the "Kent Supplement to One and All", July 1950. Small paper tears to proud overlap around book. In Very Good condition. Member of the P.B.F.A.



    TLS Thomas Parkinson to his wife, Ariel Reynolds Parkinson, January 25, 1973. RE: family by Thomas F. Parkinson (1920 - 1992)

    Berkeley, CA: Thomas F. Parkinson, 1973. Typed letter signed, Single Page, 8.5" x 11". Very Good. Written while Ariel Reynolds Parkinson was on a trip to NYC & elsewhere. Provenance: Peter Howard, Serendipity Books, Berkeley, Thomas Parkinson archive.



    The Illuminated Manuscript by Backhouse, Janet

    Oxford: Phaidon, 1979. First edition. Hardcover. Fine/fine. 4to. Boards. Pp. 80. Illustrated. Over a thousand years manuscripts were illuminated. Here is a history of them, along with a description of how they were made.



    The Seats and Causes of Diseases, in three volumes by Morgagni, John Baptist

    Birmingham, Alabama: Gryphon Press for the Classics of Medical Library, 1983. First Edition Thus. Hardcover. Near Fine. Numbered 2137 (on laid-in bookplate in Volume III, from the library of Ronald Litvack, M.D.) of a Limited Edition contribution to the series, The Classics of Medicine Library - Gryphon Editions, published in Birmingham, Alabama, and handsomely produced up to their usual high standards, taking classics from medicine and society, from laboratory and surgical clinics, from the Ancient Greeks and Egyptians to the late 19th and early 20th centuries, printing in facsimile, and typically also with scholarly edifice, including full bibliography, index, notes and illustrations where first published, sometimes also with scholarly commentary on the provenance and meaning of the original manuscript. Full gilt-embossed rust-colored leather, all edges gilt. Sewn-in linen ribbon bookmark to all three volumes. Volume I: xxxii + 868 pp.; Volume II: vi + 770 pp.; Volume III: 604 pp. + Index. Additional postage may be required for oversize or especially heavy volumes, and for sets.



    Sir William Monson's Naval Tracts in Six Books by Monson, William

    London: Printed for A. and J. Churchill, 1703. First edition. Title continues: "Containing, 1. A yearly account of the English and Spanish fleets during the war in Queen Elizabeth's time; with remarks on the actions on both sides. 2. Actions of the English under King James the First, and discourses upon that Subject. 3. The office of the Lord High Admiral of England, and of all the ministers and officers under him, with other Particulars to that purpose. 4. Discoveries and enterprizes of the Spaniards and Portuguese; and several other remarkable passages and observations. 5. Divers projects and stratagems tender'd for the good of the kingdom. 6. Treats of fishing to be set up on the coast of England, Scotland, and Ireland, with the benefit that will accrue by it to all His Majesty's three kingdoms; with many other things concerning fish, fishing, and matters of that nature. The Whole from the Original Manuscript Never before Published." The best contemporary account of the British naval status during the time of Elizabeth the First and King James. The Naval Tracts are Sir William Monson's (1569-1643) historical narratives and proposals for the reform of abuses to improve the naval resources of Britain. Six books in one, disbound. Small folio, 163-560pp (page numbering error skips the page numbers 538-49). Boards lacking, spine present but chipped. As is.



    Rois De France. Original Manuscript by Fort, Paul

    Paris, 1930. Unbound. Paul Fort's original manuscript, neatly and beautifully written in ink; quarto, 79 leaves of heavy cream paper and laid loose into a green portfolio. Paul Fort drew much of his inspiration from the Middle Ages, and the aballad form that he used almost exclusively was taken from the same period. He filled some forty volumes with his delicate ballads. He was also active in the theatre, even before the turn of the century, writing some plays himself and producing what were considered "difficult" plays by some of his contemporaries. In 1956, he received the Grand Literary Prize of the City of Paris for his works. Fine. Together with the limited edition of the book (#48 of 200 copies), Inscribed to Madame Christian Schram Senior and with an 11 line holograph poem, initialed "P. F." and dated Paris, May, 1931; and with an excellent 4 page autograph letter signed and dated October 8, 1930. A near fine copy.



    Framed Autographed Letter and Photo Portrait of Clara Barton by Barton, Clara

    CT Book. Illus. by with Photograph. Fine. No Binding. Signed by Author(s). Handwritten letter of introduction signed by Clara Barton. Mounted together with a classic photographic portrait. Archival matte in a 20x24, 2 1/2" wide hardwood frame. Makes an excellent presentation..



    To Mary in Heaven by Burns, Robert

    The Bibliophile Society, Boston, 1916. Edition Unstated. Hardcover. Very Good+/No Jacket. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Text body is clean and free from previous owner annotation, underlining and highlighting. Binding is tight, covers and spine fully intact. Ivory paper over boards, gilt stamped title on front cover, deckle edges, some pages uncut, 26 pages, title page in red, blue & black, embossed with Bibliophile Society's seal, facsimile fold-out of original manuscript of poem; remainder of text consists of quotations about Burns and his poetry by Swinburne, Whitman and more. Spine toned, cover toned in streaks, otherwise a nice copy. In a slipcase which is soiled and half of "spine" is missing and remainder is only attached on one edge. Quantity Available: 1. Shipped Weight: 1 lb 14 oz. Category: Poetry; Inventory No: 002011. .



    The Decorated Letter by ALEXANDER, J.J.G

    New York: George Braziller, 1978. First Edition. Hardcover. Folio. 118p. with 40 full color plates illustrating the history of decorated initials or letters in Medieval manuscripts. Practically as new. Tiny bumps or spots of wear on rear upper edge of dust jacket.



    Descent of the Sun, The; A Cycle of Birth - Translated from the Original Manuscript by Bain, F. W

    Methuen & Co. Ltd; London., 1914. Good. Lacking dust jacket. Average wear. A little toning to endpapers. Prev` owner name neatly penned to fly-leaf. Laid paper. Uncut pages. A nice little book.. Originally published by Messrs. James Parker & Co.. Hard. 12mo.. Good. Illus. by Tissue-guarded frontispiece. .



    Russian Old Believer Manuscript containing two texts: Istoriia o otsekh i stradal'tsekh, and: Slovo vospominatel'noe o sviatykh chudotvortsekh v Rossii vozsiiavshikh by [Denisov, Semen, 1682-1740, and Andrei, 1674-1730]

    Russia, 1870. Folio (35 × 22 cm). Late nineteenth-century quarter calf; gilt-tooled leather spine label; edges green; 233 leaves. Two decorative headpieces and a few decorative initials. Paper with stamp of the "Troitskaia Fabrika Govarda, no. 6" to upper left corners, indicating that the paper was made around 1850 (Klepikov 1959, no. 36). Private exlibris and shelf mark of P. F. Simson to front pastedown and his (?) hand-written notation to front free end paper. Boards rubbed and scuffed; some wear to upper spine extremity; hinges somewhat tender, but binding intact and text very good. Nineteenth-century manuscript of numerous Russian Old Believer narratives, compiled by the brothers Andrei (1674-1730) and Semen Denisov (1682-1740), two major early leaders of the schism from the official Russian Orthodox faith. Andrei served as leader of the Vyg Old Believer community in the Russian northwest. Together, the brothers authored approximately two-hundred historical and liturgical texts. The longer of the texts included here relates the martyrdom of Russian Old Believers held at the Solovetsk monastery. The work could not be published in the Russian Empire, where Old Believer liturgical texts and secondary materials were only permitted after the partial abolition of censorship in 1905. This mid-nineteenth century manuscript copy comes from the library of Pavel Fedorovich Simson (1845- ca. 1920), a historian, pedagogue, and collector from near Moscow, who was active in Tver' and Kaluga. His primary interests were medieval Rus and Russian religious manuscripts. Simson also founded the Rzhev archaeological museum. in 1902 he published a descriptive catalog of his collection of manuscripts; the present manuscript is no. 75 (Opisanie rukopisei, prinadlezhashchikh P. F. Simsonu, p. 135). It is stated to have been bought in Kaluga. Evidently the collection was later dispersed; books with this provenance are occasionally seen in the trade and at auction.



    Illuminated Manuscript: Coronation of the Virgin Mary by Illuminated Manuscript

    France: np. 1st Edition. Very Good. Beautiful 15th-century leaf from a French Book of Hours with large miniature of the Coronation of Mary. On recto: Miniature of the Virgin kneeling before the enthroned God the Father, with an angel holding the crown of Mary. Behind them is a canopy. Miniature measures 100 mm x 65 mm (3.9 x 2.6 inches). The image is surrounded by a foliate border with red, blue, and pink flowers with green leaves; border also contains blue and gold acanthus leaves and penwork along left margin. One triple-line illuminated initial (the letter "C") in burnished gold and red with white details. One single-line initial in burnished gold and blue. The text, in gold-brown Latin gothic script, is from Psalm 84:5. On verso: 20 lines of text in gold-brown Latin gothic script on vellum. One double-line illuminated initial in burnished gold and blue with white details. 11 single-line illuminated initials in burnished gold and red/blue with white details. The text is from Psalm 69:2 and Psalm 128. Northern France (probably Normandy): c. 1475. Size: 155 mm x 105 mm (6.1 x 4.1 inches). Some residue on extreme margin of verso; very minor tiny bits of flecking. In decorative wood frame. The text in Latin: On recto (Psalmus 84:5): Converte nos Deus salutaris noster: et averte iram tuam a nobis. On verso: Psalmus 69:2: Deus in adiutorium meum intende: Domine ad adiuvandum me festina. Psalmus 128: Sæpe expugnaverunt me a iuventute mea: etenim non potuerunt mihi. Supra dorsum meum fabricaverunt peccatores: prolongaverunt iniquitatem suam. Dominus iustus concidit cervices peccatorum: Confundantur et convertantur retrorsum omnes, qui oderunt Sion. Fiant sicut fœnum tectorum: quod priusquam evellatur, exaruit: De quo non implevit manum suam qui metit, et sinum suum qui manipulos colligit. Et non dixerunt qui præteribant: Benedictio Domini super vos: benediximus vobis in nomine Domini. English translation: On recto (Psalm 84:5): Convert us, O God, our Savior, and turn your anger away from us. On verso: Psalm 69.2: O God, reach out to help me. O Lord, hasten to assist me. Psalm 128: They have often fought against me from my youth, yet they could not prevail over me. The sinners have made fabrications behind my back. They have prolonged their iniquity. The just Lord will cut the necks of sinners. Let all those who hate Zion be confounded and turned backwards. Let them be like grass on the rooftops, which withers before it can be pulled up: With it, he who reaps does not fill his hand and he who gathers sheaves does not fill his bosom. And those who were passing by have not said to them: "The blessing of the Lord be upon you. We have blessed you in the name of the Lord.



    The manner of holding parliaments in England by Elsynge, Henry 1606?-1656

    Dublin: Irish University Press, 1971. Facsimile reprint of 1768 ed., London, T. Payne, 1768; and of the original manuscript text of c.1626. - xix,xx,298,(275)p ; 28cm. Title page imprint, Shannon. - Parallel manuscript and printed text. A nice clean copy, just a bit dusty to fore edges of the block, not affecting greatly or to the facing pages.( Images to follow ). Hard Cover. Very Good. 4to - over 9¾" - 12" tall.



    THE PRODIGAL VIRGIN by Thomas, Homer G

    Dijon, France [New York?]: Intercontinental Classics, 1960. Original wrappers. Perfect-bound, externally side-stapled. Light shelfwear; some rubbing to covers. Else very good. 211pp. An erotic novel, originally published in a limited editon of 700, at Dijon (in reality, New York) by Percy Shostac in 1935. Verso of the title page reads "In our opinion this book is the greatest ever written. Sold for $50.00 a copy in its original manuscript form now available for the first time at this price $2.25."



    The Tailor of Gloucester A Facsimile of the original manuscript & Illustrations by Beatrix Potter

    Frederick Warne and Company, Ltd, 1968 Black cloth book in very good condition. Limited edition of 1500 copies this being number 14. Slipcase has some edgewear and foxing. Book has a plastic cover over the black cloth boards, has a few pieces missing.. Scuff on the back of the slipcase.

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