Heritage Auctions book sale spans Renaissance to 1950s, April 2

Unusually fine copy of the Ray Bradbury’s ‘Fahrenheit 451,’ New York: Ballantine Books, 1953. First edition, number 102 of 200 copies signed by Bradbury and bound in ‘an asbestos material with exceptional resistance to pyrolysis.’ Estimate: $17,500 - up. Heritage Auctions image.

Unusually fine copy of the Ray Bradbury’s ‘Fahrenheit 451,’ New York: Ballantine Books, 1953. First edition, number 102 of 200 copies signed by Bradbury and bound in ‘an asbestos material with exceptional resistance to pyrolysis.’ Estimate: $17,500 – up. Heritage Auctions image.

NEW YORK – One of the finest known signed copies of the first edition of Ray Bradbury’s seminal 1953 masterpiece, Fahrenheit 451 in the original asbestos binding, – to ensure that the book would survive burning – is expected to bring more than $17,500, anchoring the deep selection of fine literature and Americana in Heritage Auctions’ Rare Books Signature® Auction on Wednesday, April 2.

LiveAuctioneers.com will facilitate Internet live bidding.

“Bradbury’s 1953 futuristic parable of a world without books is as relevant and readable as ever,” said James Gannon, director of Rare Books at Heritage.” We’ve sold several copies of the first edition of this book, as collectors are always looking for it, but this superb copy is the finest we’ve yet encountered.”

With more than 1,000 lots crossing the block in the auction, highlights from two prominent private collections – one from North Carolina, one from New Orleans – offer works at a variety of price points and genres curated to suit any collecting taste.

The auction also features another excellent offering of rare books and unique manuscripts in the Armenian language, including a complete set of 29 fine art collotype prints of masterpiece paintings by Hovsep Pushman (estimate: $40,000-plus), Pushman’s entire output, the first 10 examples of which are very difficult, if not impossible, to obtain. An Armenian illuminated manuscript of the Four Gospels (estimate: $20,000-plus) contains six miniatures, illuminated concordances, marginal illustrations and ornamented letters to make up a fantastic offering.

A hand-colored plate of the Great Horned Owl by Havell (estimate: $12,500-plus), from Audubon’s double-elephant folio first edition of The Birds of America, is attracting significant collector interest, while a rare 1835 edition of The Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of Latter Day Saints (estimate: $30,000-plus), a cornerstone of Mormon theology, carries a direct line of provenance back to an early Mormon family with a contemporary ownership inscription.

A fine private collection from North Carolina both begins and ends the auction, including a fine first edition of Ian Fleming’s first James Bond novel, Casino Royale (estimate: $20,000-plus), a series of prints titled Flights: Unforgettable Exploits of the Air (estimate: $5,000-plus), each signed by a legend of aviation, including Orville Wright, Charles Lindbergh and Richard E. Byrd, and a limited edition, one of only 10 signed presentation copies of the “Author’s Autograph Edition” of Amelia Earhart’s first book, 20 Hrs. 40 Min. Our Flight in the Friendship (estimate: $8,000-plus), with one of the original American flags that was on her plane during her flight affixed to the front pastedown.

A private collection in New Orleans provides Heritage Auctions with a special offering of books with important provenance with highlights focusing on French enlightenment and history, French and European royalty, Napoleonic Wars, European and Middle-Eastern travels, and Americana. An example of both French history and fine binding in this collection is a copy of l’Office de la Semaine Sainte (estimate: $6,000-plus), with a contemporary royal binding and a handwritten note that the copy was presented to Louis XIV at Versailles. Also included are works of English literature including first editions by Dickens and Milton; and American works by Capote and Agee.

Other highlights include, but are not limited to:

– Sir Isaac Newton. The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy. London: Benjamin Motte, 1729. First edition of the Principia in English. Estimate: $35,000-plus.

– Raphael Holinshed. The Chronicles of England, Scotlande, and Irelande. Three volumes in two. A fantastic, complete copy in excellent condition of this important Shakespeare sourcebook. Estimate: $10,000-plus.

– Charles Dickens. The Christmas Books. London: Chapman and Hall, 1843-48. First editions of all five of Charles Dickens’ Christmas Books, chief among them a first issue of his immortal A Christmas Carol. From of a private collection of over sixty fine books in this auction from a gentleman of New Orleans. Estimate: $7,500-plus.

– Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes, Vincent Starrett. Baker Street Irregulars Plaque Commemorating the Publication of Starrett’s 221B: Studies in Sherlock Holmes. Estimate: $15,000-plus.

– Gettysburg Address. Edward Everett. An Oration Delivered on the Battlefield of Gettysburg. New York: Baker & Godwin, 1863. The first appearance of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in book form. Estimate: $20,000-plus.

– Stephen King. In a Half World of Terror. Published in Stories of Suspense #2. Flushing, New York: MW Publications, [1966]. A rare and early fanzine appearance from the King of Horror. Estimate: $2,000-plus.

– Eric Carle. The Very Hungry Caterpillar. New York: The World Publishing Co., [1969]. A rare first edition of one of the most beloved children’s books of all time, signed by Carle. Estimate: $13,500-plus.

The auction will be conduced at Heritage Auctions’ New York gallery, 445 Park Ave. (at 57th Street).

View the fully illustrated catalog and register to bid absentee or live via the Internet as the sale is taking place by logging on to www.LiveAuctioneers.com.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE


Unusually fine copy of the Ray Bradbury’s ‘Fahrenheit 451,’ New York: Ballantine Books, 1953. First edition, number 102 of 200 copies signed by Bradbury and bound in ‘an asbestos material with exceptional resistance to pyrolysis.’ Estimate: $17,500 - up. Heritage Auctions image.

Unusually fine copy of the Ray Bradbury’s ‘Fahrenheit 451,’ New York: Ballantine Books, 1953. First edition, number 102 of 200 copies signed by Bradbury and bound in ‘an asbestos material with exceptional resistance to pyrolysis.’ Estimate: $17,500 – up. Heritage Auctions image.

Complete set of fine art prints of Armenian-American artist Hovsep Pushman, most prints signed [Hovsep Pushman, artist]. Complete set of 29 fine art collotype prints of masterpiece paintings by Hovsep Pushman. Estimate: $40,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

Complete set of fine art prints of Armenian-American artist Hovsep Pushman, most prints signed [Hovsep Pushman, artist]. Complete set of 29 fine art collotype prints of masterpiece paintings by Hovsep Pushman. Estimate: $40,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

Armenian illuminated manuscript of the Four Gospels with six miniatures, illuminated concordances, marginal illustrations and ornamented letters. The Armenian date 1122 corresponds to the year 1673-1674. Estimate: $20,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

Armenian illuminated manuscript of the Four Gospels with six miniatures, illuminated concordances, marginal illustrations and ornamented letters. The Armenian date 1122 corresponds to the year 1673-1674. Estimate: $20,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

John James Audubon's large hand-colored engraving of the Great Horned Owl- Plate XLI (Havell Edition). Estimate: $12,500-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

John James Audubon’s large hand-colored engraving of the Great Horned Owl- Plate XLI (Havell Edition). Estimate: $12,500-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

Ian Fleming’s ‘Casino Royale,’ London: Jonathan Cape, [1953]. First edition of the first James Bond novel, in first issue dust jacket. Estimate: $20,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

Ian Fleming’s ‘Casino Royale,’ London: Jonathan Cape, [1953]. First edition of the first James Bond novel, in first issue dust jacket. Estimate: $20,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

Rare first edition of a cornerstone of Mormon theology, the 1835 edition of ‘Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of Latter Day Saints.’ Estimate: $30,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.

Rare first edition of a cornerstone of Mormon theology, the 1835 edition of ‘Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of Latter Day Saints.’ Estimate: $30,000-plus. Heritage Auctions image.