Sotheby’s Paris – Livres et Manuscrits

October 28th, 2011 by

Opening with a collection of 70 books on the history of sciences and ideas, this sale features works from Descartes to Pvlov, including the Napoleon Civil Code printed on vellum paper and a manuscript on early photography signed by Niépce. Each outlines a new contribution in the field of knowledge and expression.

An important selection of 20th century decorative arts books will also be offered. This includes L’Histoire de l’adolescente sucre d’amour, in a wonderful binding by Schmied with Dunand embedded lacquer, and a rare version of the History of the Princesse Boudour printed on Japanese paper, which was formerly part of the Abdy collection.

These are joined by some manuscripts and memorabilia of Serge Gainsbourg, including the autograph songs Sorry Angel  and Love on the Beat, one of the singer’s shirts, and a 500 Franc note, torn up by Gainsbourg and mailed to his friend Fulbert.

The sale also includes literary masterpieces such as an original edition of Du côté de chez Swann, posted by Proust to his editor Bernard Grasset; some love letters from Marie Dorval to Alfred de Vigny; a group of letters by Verlaine to Edmond Lepelletier; and an exceptional copy of La Prose du Transsibérien and La petite Jehanne de France, stenciled by Sonia Delaunay on Japanese paper with mailing to Abel Gance.

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