BERKELEY, Calif. – PBA Galleries announced it will hold an auction of Antiquarian Books on December 2. The sale comprises nearly 250 lots featuring children’s books, works from the golden age of illustration, posters, decorative and graphic arts, and antiquarian books. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers.
Highlights include a custom-made art deco chandelier from San Francisco’s premiere movie palace, the Fox Theater; a three-sheet color lithograph poster from magician Carter the Great; a complete set of William Pickering’s Book of Common Prayer; and several classic works of the Western canon.
The aforementioned William Pickering’s printing of the historical Book of Common Prayer, consists of a complete set in seven volumes of typographic facsimiles of the original black letter editions as issued by the different English monarchs. It is estimated at $3,000-$5,000.
A number of documents related to the Napoleonic era will be offered, led by a Napoleon-signed letter. Penned in August of 1797 during the Italian Campaign in which Napoleon, then General in Chief of the Army of Italy, gained much of his early fame, Napoleon directs the procedure for the confiscation and distribution of rations and other goods, requests an intelligence officer for a planned raid, and names other specific tasks for his officers. The letter is estimated at $1,000-$1,500.
Also of note is a unique manuscript ledger and cutlery design book from the Argyle Cutlery Works in Sheffield, England, illustrated throughout with pen and ink knife designs. Dating from the early 20th century, the lot also contains other bits of ephemera including an invoice and business card from the business. The Argyle Cutlery Works was one of numerous Sheffield businesses that exported pocket knives, soldiers’ knives, and cutlery to the world market. It is estimated at $1,000-$1,500.
Non-book lots in the sale are led by a custom chandelier from San Francisco’s landmark Art Deco movie palace The Fox Theater, estimated at $5,000-$8,000; a pair of vintage Art Deco lighting fixtures with opaque glass, estimated at $3,000-$5,000; and a Beaux Arts era Paris streetlight floor lamp with bronze casting, estimated at $3,000-$5,000. Also in the auction are two beautiful Seguso Family Murano glass vases from the glass making dynasty, each estimated at $1,500-$2,000.
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