Of Books and Brits: Literature at Swann

Today, the world crashes the wedding of Will and Kate through the wonders of digital media. And Swann celebrates the mother country in classic, and always collectible, print form.

Agnes Strickland, Lives of the Queens of England (detail), 16 volumes, 1902-03. Estimate: $2,000 to $3,000.

Our upcoming May 12th sale of Art, Press & Illustrated Books and 19th & 20th Century Literature, features a beautiful a 16-volume set of Agnes Strickland’s Lives of the Queens of England, with engraved plates and illustrations of English royal figures and their surroundings, bound in rich crimson morocco with colored calf onlays of English coats-of-arms and crowns. 

Charles Dickens, The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club, 1930. Estimate: $600 to $900.

Victorian England’s most famous literary son, Charles Dickens, makes numerous appearances in the sale, with a first edition set of Dombey and Son in original parts, a lovely set of the famous Nonesuch Edition of the Works containing an original woodblock for one of the illustrations, a charming edition of The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club in an illustrated leather binding, and celebrating England’s first literary great and the other famous William—Shakespeare—a gift Dickens inscribed to his friend Charles Kent shortly before his death in June of 1870. 

And, of course no nursery—royal or otherwise—would be complete without a copy of the quintessential English children’s book of the 20th century, A.A. Milne’s Winnie-The-Pooh, with its iconic images of the bear and his boy Christopher Robin by E.H. Shepard. We are offering one of the scarce signed limited first edition copies for the princely sum of $5,000 to $7,500.