Early Printed Books: May 5, 2022 Auction Highlights

Lot 122: William Shakespeare, Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies, the second impression, London, 1632. Estimate $100,000 to $150,000. 

The Collection of Ken Rapoport

This spring’s Early Printed Book sale will feature the first part of the complete library of noted bibliophile and collector Ken Rapoport, who over a collecting career of more than fifty years amassed hundreds of sought-after rarities in literature. Inspired chiefly by the works of Rabelais, Cervantes, Shakespeare, and Molière, his collection also includes much in Spanish and English poetry and drama. Rapoport’s books also encompass important highlights in the early chivalric tradition that gave rise to Don Quixote, along with the work of Spanish contemporaries of Cervantes. Rapoport’s high standards of condition and broad-reaching collecting will keep our attention in this sale with more to come in the fall and following spring.
Lot 97: Lancelot du Lac, Le Premier Volume de Lancelot du Lac Nouvelleme[n]t Imprimé à Paris, Paris, 1533. Estimate $15,000 to $20,000. 

Swann is also pleased to offer a book from the library of bibliophile Jean Grolier, bound by the Royal Parisian bookbinder to François I, Etienne Roffet. With the provenance of Lucien Goldschmidt and a letter from Howard Nixon accompanying the volume, it presents a very rare opportunity to own a book once shared by the famed Grolier with his friends.

Lot 309: Thucydides (c. 460-400 BCE), De Bello Peloponnensium, Bound for Jean Grolier, Cologne, 1527. Estimate $30,000 to $50,000.

The History of Economics

We are also very pleased to offer a section dedicated to the study and history of economics, which includes many first editions by Nobel laureates in the field, a presentation copy of Adam Smith’s The Theory of Moral Sentiments, a first edition of Milton Friedman’s Capitalism and Freedom and several works by John Maynard Keynes. 

Lot 36: Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, Author’s Presentation Copy, London, 1790. Estimate $3,000 to $5,000. 

Related Reading: As Seen in Books — A Glossary for Items Found in the Pages of Early Printed Books

Lot 198: Carmelite Breviary, Manuscript on Parchment, Italy, early 15th century. Estimate $8,000 to $12,000. 

Related Reading: Lies in Publishing — Collecting False Imprints