BLTC Press Titles


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The Revolt of the Netherlands

Friedrich Schiller


Tao Te Ching

Lao Tzu, James Legge (trans.)


Some Experiences of an Irish R. M.

Edith Somerville and Martin Ross


The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

A. Conan Doyle


A brief description of New York

by Daniel Denton

Excerpt:

T

I

INTRODUCTION

Bibliography is the biography of books.—John Ferguson, Some Aspects of Bibliography.

In the middle of November, 1900, there was sold at auction in London by Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, a part of the library of Lord Ashburton * that was especially rich in scarce and unique books, and the sale attracted, therefore, considerable interest among book-collectors. The highest bid reached — £400, or $2000 — during the sale, which lasted four days, was for a tract of only twenty-one pages text, i. e., (the title is given abbreviated) Daniel Denton's Brief Description of New York, formerly called New Netherlands, London, 1670.

This pamphlet is always considered by connoisseurs, and with good reason, as one of the most sought after Americana, not only as it seems to be the first printed relation of New York in English, but also on account of its excessive rarity.

Denton's Description has been twice reprinted, and, curiously enough, the two reprints happened to appear in the same year. The first reprint was issued in No. 1 of the "Proceedings of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania," Philadelphia, March, 1845,* with a very brief introduction by John Pennington.

* Catalogue of a portion of the valuable library of the Rt. Hon. Lord Ashburton, sold by Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, Nov. 14-17, 1900.

The second forms Vol. 1 of "Gowans's Biblio- theca Americana," f published in New York, 1845, with introduction and notes by Gabriel Funnan. There is also a third partial reprint in the "Library of American Literature," % edited byE. C. Stedman and E. M. Hutchinson, Vol. 1, pages 419-426.

I have been able to trace, of the original, up to date, the following copies:

A. Mentioned in Auction and Second-Hand Catalogues

1 copy mentioned in Evans's "Auction Catalogue of the Library of George Nassau," London, 1824.** 1 copy mentioned in O. Rich's "Catalogue of Books Relating Principally to America," London, 1832.*

Proceedings of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Vol. i, No. i, March, 1845. Philadelphia, printed for the Society, 1845.

f Gowans's Bibliotheca Americana, Number i. New York, William Gowans, 1845.

% A Library of American Literature, from the Earliest Settlement to the Present Time, compiled and edited by Edmund Clarence Stedman and Ellen Mackay Hutchinson. n volumes. New York, William Evarts Benjamin.

** Catalogue of the Choice, Curious and Extensive Library of the Late George Nassau, Pt. i, No. 1094. Sold by auction by Mr. Evans, beginning February 16, 1824.

1 copy mentioned in Evans's " Auction Catalogue of the Library of Richard Heber," London, 1835. f

1 copy mentioned as recently imported, by Gabriel Furman in the introduction to the reprint of Daniel Denton's Description, New York, 1845.

1 copy mentioned, 1846, in the "Auction Sale Catalogue of the Library of Gabriel Furman." J

1 copy mentioned in Henry Stevens's " Historical Nuggets," 1862. **

1 copy mentioned, 1873, as belonging to John F. McCoy, in Sabin's "Dictionary of Books relating to America." ff

1 copy mentioned, 1875, in the "Auction Sale Catalogue of the Library of William Menzies." *

* Catalogue of Books Relating Principally to America, arranged under the years in which they were printed. London, O. Rich, 1832.

f Catalogue of the Library of the late Richard Heber, Pt. 7, No. 1842. Sold by auction by Mr. Evans, May 25, 1835.

\ Catalogue of an extensive and valuable private library, collected during many years with great labor and expense, consisting of a very choice collection of rare, curious and valuable books. Sold at auction by Royal Gurley & Co., November 30, and the five following days. New York, 1846.


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