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The Joslin Hall Rare Books Newsletter
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March 6th, 2007.

It’s going to be Saint Patrick’s Day soon, and since it involves food and beer, it’s one of the Book Elves favorite holidays. They’ve always thrown a big party to celebrate, but after last year’s “mishap”, and the ensuing court costs, they decided to do a dry run a few weeks ahead of time this year. Now here’s the thing- it’s never a good idea to pair the phrases “Book Elves’ unsupervised party preparations” and “30,000 gallons of green, vegetable-based food coloring”, especially if you live within a quarter mile of the Connecticut River...

But before the squadron of helicopters from the EPA Rapid Response SWAT Team descended and started fingerprinting everyone, the Book Elves finished this new catalog of books-


catalog_296.jpg (18132 bytes)"RECENT ACQUISITIONS for March, 2007" is now available on our website or in printed format. It features 201 books and catalogs on furniture, silver, ceramics, glass, textiles, art, architecture and related fields, with highlights including-

-A nice 1782 book of decorative cyphers for silversmiths & engravers.

-Several important 19th century color books by George Field.

-A lovely Victorian facsimile of a 1677 London Merchant directory.

-A 1698 catalog of ancient Egyptian amulets.

-A 1750 poem about raising silkworms, with a marvelous engraved frontispiece.

-An important 1837 book of designs for gate houses and lodges, owned by a founder of the Boston Society of Arts & Crafts (Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's nephew!).

-An uncommon 1862 collection of Renaissance silver designs.

-A fascinating and detailed 1840s survey of trades and manufactures in Britain.

-and much, much more!

Request a printed copy, or browse the catalog on our website.


fakes1.jpg (25597 bytes)This month's catalog also has a special feature on fakes, forgeries and frauds, a topic which has always fascinated me. What’s real and what isn’t? As Frank Arnau notes in his book ‘The Art of the Faker’-

"According to the enlarged edition of his oeuvre catalogue, Corot painted over two thousand pictures. Of these, more than five thousand are in the United States".

We issued a catalog a few years ago completely devoted to this topic (fakes, not Corot), and are looking towards a new issue of it, but in the meantime, we hope you enjoy this month’s special section (items 35 through 71).

We recently got two great new publisher-overstock titles in about Japanese copper smelting and caviar-


Tsuna, Masuda. "Kodo Zuroku. Illustrated Book on the Smelting of Copper" Norwalk; Burndy Library: 1983. This is a facsimile edition of Masuda Tsuna's 1801 treatise on copper smelting, with its original color woodcuts by Niwa Motokuni Tokei. It is translated by Zenryu Shirakawa and edited and introduced by Cyril Stanley Smith, with a preface by Bern Dibner. This volume is from the Burndy Library of books on the history of science and technology, founded by engineer and industrialist Dibner at the Burndy Engineering Company in Norwalk, Connecticut. Softcover. 8”x10.5”, 96 pages, color and b/w illustrations. New. [95071]

Available for a limited time for $15.00

Carey, Richard Adams. "The Philosopher Fish. Sturgeon, Caviar, and the Geography of Desire" New York; Counterpoint: 2005. “Since the days of the Persian Empire, caviar has trumpeted status, wealth, prestige, and sex appeal. In this remarkable journey to caviar’s source, the author immerses himself in the world of the sturgeon, the fish that lays the golden eggs. Ancient, shrouded in mystery, inexplicable in several of its behaviors, the sturgeon has a fascinating biologic past- and an uncertain future...” Hardcover. 6.5”x9.5”, 333 pages, dj. [95072]

Published at $26.00.
Available for a limited time for $10.00

We’ve finally begun to get some Winter weather here at Foggygates, with several snow storms in the last three weeks. As soon as it gets cold enough for the local bears to start hibernating, we put bird feeders out in the side yard and by the back deck. (We know it’s time to take them away in the Spring when we find one of the pole feeders flattened and ripped up by the bear, but that’s another story).

cardinal1.jpg (14063 bytes)At this time of year we have a huge crowd of birds at the feeders, from early in the morning until dusk. But the three pairs of cardinals, several woodpeckers, bunches of wrens, finches, doves and other assorted little birds (plus half a dozen fat squirrels) are now being joined on a regular basis by a young red-tailed hawk. He first showed up a week or so ago, sitting in the tall tree behind the carriage house, and has lately taken to sitting on the railing of the deck, or in the small fruit tree we hang the feeders on just beside it. I am afraid he may not be here for the seeds...



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at Foggygates, our bookselling blog!



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