• <b>Bonhams New York, FINE BOOKS & MANUSCRIPTS, 10 Dec 2014.</b>
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 5. FESTBUCH: Procession Following Charles V's Coronation as Holy Roman Emperor by Pope Clement<br>VII. Est. $120,000-180,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 6. GUTENBERG BIBLE. [Bible in Latin. Mainz: Johann Gutenberg and Fust, 1455.] Est. $40,000-60,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 21. CORONELLI, VICENZO MARIA.<br>1650-1718. [Atlante Veneto.]<br> Est. $25,000-30,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 33. GIGAULT DE LA SALLE, ACHILLE ÉTIENNE. 1772-1840. Voyage pittoresque en Sicile. Est. $25,000-35,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 50. ROTTERDAM. [DE HOOGHE, ROMEYN, AND JOANNES DE VOU.] Album.<br>Est. $50,000-70,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 77. JOSEPH, MICHAEL. A Book of Cats. Covici Friede, 1930. Est. $20,000-30,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 124. DICKENS, CHARLES. 1812-1870. The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club. Est. $20,000-25,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 145. SHAKESPEARE, WILLIAM. 1564-1616. Shakespear's Comedies, Histories and Tragedies. Est. $40,000-60,000.
    <b>Bonhams Dec 10th: </b>Lot 160. JOYCE, JAMES. 1882-1941. Pomes Penyeach. Paris: Obelisk Press. [September] 1932. Est. $45,000-75,000.
  • <b>19th Century Shop</b>. 30th anniversary catalogue of landmark rare books, autographs and manuscripts, and historical photographs of all ages.
    <b>19th Century Shop</b>. Abraham Lincoln, "a previously unknown portrait of exceptional quality." From the collection of John Hay.
    <b>19th Century Shop</b>. <i>The Federalist</i> (1788). An important association copy in original boards, untrimmed.
    <b>19th Century Shop</b>. Isaac Newton. <i>Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica</i> (1687).
    <b>19th Century Shop</b>. Shakespeare's <i>Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies</i> (1632).
    <b>19th Century Shop</b>. John Rockefeller. Ambrotype, the earliest known photograph of Rockefeller.
    <b>19th Century Shop</b>. Muybridge, <i>Animal Locomotion</i> (1887) subscriber's copy.
  • <b>Christies South Kensington:</b> Lot 7: A collection of letters and documents of Scottish industrialist & politician<br>D. J. Macdonald, 1922–1939.<br>£3,000–5,000
    <b>Christies South Kensington:</b> Lot 9: MARCONI WIRELESS TELEGRAPH COMPANY – A collection of material relating to the evolution of broadcasting in the early 20th century. £3,000–5,000
    <b>Christies South Kensington:</b> Lot 27: Francesco Maurolico (1494–1575). <i>Martyrologium … Francisci Maurolyci … multo quam antea purgatum, & locupletatum</i>. Venice: Lucas Antonius Giunta, 1568. £6,000–9,000
    <b>Christies South Kensington:</b> Lot 39: Henry Purcell (1659–1695). <i>Orpheus Britannicus</i>. A Collection of all the Choicest Songs for One, Two, and Three Voices. London: for Henry Playford, 1698–1702. £3,000–5,000
    <b>Christies South Kensington:</b> Lot 111: Abraham Ortelius (1527–1598). <i>Theatrum oder Schwabüch des Erdtkreijs</i>. Antwerp: [Jan Baptist Vrients], 1602. £10,000–15,000
    <b>Christies South Kensington:</b> Lot 138: W. L. Wyllie and H. W. Brewer. <i>Bird's Eye View of London as seen from a balloon</i>. London: The Graphic, 1884. £3,000–5,000
    <b>Christies South Kensington:</b> Lot 202: John Speed (1552–1629). <i>The Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine</i>. London, 1627–[46]. £15,000–25,000
  • <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Bill Wilson, Alcoholics Anonymous. Stunning first edition in original dust jacket.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Valentine Davies, Miracle on 34th Street. A holiday favorite.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility. Austen’s first published novel.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Seeking to purchase fine books and collections.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Jack Kerouac, On the Road. The Beat generation bible.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Print catalogues regularly issued, call or email for a copy.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Arthur Miller, Death of a Salesman. An exceptional first edition.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace. Rare London edition, the first in English.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> William Wordsworth, Poems. In a charming full-morocco binding.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Print catalogues regularly issued, call or email for a copy.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451. In the publisher’s asbestos binding.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian. McCarthy’s best book.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Hound of the Baskervilles. A Fine copy.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Seeking to purchase fine books and collections.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Robert Bloch, Psycho. A lovely copy of a fragile book.
    <b>Whitmore Rare Books.</b> Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. A perennial favorite.

AE Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - February - 2007 Issue

A Sold Out Catalogue from deHartington and Weiss

Onanism

The thankfully unillustrated catalogue on onanism.


By Michael Stillman

Here is a catalogue unlike any others we have reviewed. It is unique both for its subject and the fact that it is the first catalogue which sold out before we even received it! More about that and the buyer later on, but first we take a look at the catalogue itself. It is offered by Michael DeHartington of London and Burton Weiss of Berkeley. The title is simply Onanism. For most, that term probably is not understood. Those who know are smirking.

The subheading enlightens us: The masturbation panic 1756-1973. It must have been serious, as that's an awfully long time for a panic to go on. Actually, you might think a topic like this would not have been discussed that much in public. You would be wrong. As this catalogue elucidates, the topic was the subject of much discussion, or at least of much literature. Why is a mystery. For whatever reason, the practice became a sin in the eyes of prudish theologians and others, which in turn led to a field of quackery "science" which attempted to convince young people it would result in all sorts of medical catastrophes. Of course there was no evidence for this, but as with patent medicine, no evidence was required. So, we have this body of literature, designed to scare people, either with quack medical claims or hellish theological threats. Of course, none of this had any impact, people behaving as they always did, but it is still interesting to listen to the hysterical writers tilt at their chosen windmill. Here are a few samples from these works.

Pastor Sylvanus Stall attempted to instill fear in the hearts of young men in 1897 in What a Young Man Ought to Know. Along with undermining physical powers, destroying health, and bringing on ruin, regret and remorse, Stall informs his readers the "evil practice" can, "in some instances bring softening of the brain, weakening the intellect, and convert its unfortunate victim into an imbecile, thus preparing himself either for the insane asylum or an early place in the cemetery." One wonders if this was the cause of Stall's own imbecility.

While young men were usually the target audience for these publications, women were not spared. Augustus Gardner, an MD no less, informs us in Conjugal Relationships as regards Personal Health... (1918), "much of the worthlessness, lassitude and mental and physical feebleness attributable to the modern woman are to be ascribed to these habits as their initial cause." I always wondered what made modern women this way.

As long as we are picking on women, another MD, John Cowan, in The Science of a New Life, quoting a Dr. J.C. Jackman (seriously), observes, "I never knew a girl to eat lime off the wall, or to chew up her slate-pencils, who was not to a greater or less extent a victim of this practice." Come to think of it, I have never known any girls who ate lime off of walls who weren't either. Is this why they call the British limeys?

AE Monthly


Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions