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153 items found:

Isaac Newton. Kawanabe Kyosai & Nakagane Masahira. - [Sekai Fuzoku Orai - gai hen]. Tokyo, 1873 (Meiji 6). 230x155mm publisher's wrapper (a bit used); two full page colour woodblock prints by Kyosai. Minor signs of use, pretty good. Au$750

Could there be a better portrait of Isaac Newton? I doubt it. Where else have you seen the fierce intellect and the majestic dignity of the warrior king of science so well embodied? In one piercing moment he has seen into the secret heart of all things, made his ruling and brought order to an unruly universe. Having decreed how that apple had moved through space and where it now rests he defies it to move again.
The other picture is of the young James Watt making his first steam powered discoveries. The myth of child Watt and the kettle seems to date from 1839 with Arago's Eloge of James Watt and in picture a few years later; the earliest I found is an 1844 wood engraving in Jerrold's Illuminated Magazine illustrating a fanciful retelling by Angus Reach. Kyosai's picture is closer in form to Buss's 1845 painting than Marcus Stone's 1863 reworking of the story but it is clear that he has worked - as with Newton and the apple - from the story rather than any pictorial model.
OCLC finds only the Diet Library copy of this but Waseda University has a sadly chewed copy they illustrate online. Included with this is the companion but separate work 'Sekai Fuzuko Orai hatsu hen'. This has no title label and has some pretty insignifcant worming at the beginning; with two full page woodcuts.


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Hashizume Kan'ichi. [Zokuzoku Sekai Shobai Orai]. Tokyo 1873? 180x120mm publisher's wrapper with title label (a bit used); 26 double folded leaves; one double page illustration and several small illustrations through the text, title page framed in a blue barrel. A nice copy. Au$350

First edition? of this handy bilingual vocabulary of world trade giving the English, with Japanese explanations, of a wide range of terms, quantities, goods, professions, and so on. Hashizume, who specialised in handbooks on trade and on foreign languages, produced, I think, maybe four of these guides for merchants with similar titles; the first in 1871 following it up with at least two more in 1873. There are more than three but the variants in copies ostensibly of the same book make it all a bit confusing.
Curious about this one is that the English text has been cut in wood, it isn't type. There are several endearing spelling mistakes, mishapen or reversed letters and odd truncations but more puzzling than these are some of the chosen terms for Japanese traders to learn. Sublemate of mercary [sic] makes some sense, as do gloziers, hornessmakers and portruit-painters - but how often did anyone have to discuss velocipedes and grave-diggers?


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Hashizume Kan'ichi. [Zokuzoku Sekai Shobai Orai]. Tokyo 1873? 180x120mm publisher's wrapper with title label (a bit used); 26 double folded leaves; one double page illustration and several small illustrations through the text, title page framed in a blue barrel. A nice copy. Au$350

First edition? of this handy bilingual vocabulary of world trade giving the English, with Japanese explanations, of a wide range of terms, quantities, goods, professions, and so on. Hashizume, who specialised in handbooks on trade and on foreign languages, produced, I think, maybe four of these guides for merchants with similar titles; the first in 1871 following it up with at least two more in 1873. There are more than three but the variants in copies ostensibly of the same book make it all a bit confusing. Curious about this one is that the English text has been cut in wood, it isn't type. There are several endearing spelling mistakes, mishapen or reversed letters and odd truncations but more puzzling than these are some of the chosen terms for Japanese traders to learn. Sublemate of mercary [sic] makes some sense, as do gloziers, hornessmakers and portruit-painters - but how often did anyone have to discuss velocipedes and grave-diggers?


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Hashizume Kan'ichi. [Sekai Shobai Orai Hoi]. Tokyo 1873 [Meiji 6]. 180x120mm publisher's wrapper, missing the title label; 23 double folded leaves; one double page and numerous small illustrations throughout. A rather good copy. Au$275

Hashizume made a specialty of handbooks and vocabularies introducing the Japanese to the notion of international trade trade and western languages in the early Meiji period. In 1871 he published a handy Japanese-English vocabulary of world trade for Japanese merchants dealing with westerners and in 1873 followed up with two companion works. This one, as I understand it, concentrates on sales.


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CROSLAND, Newton. Apparitions; An Essay, Explanatory of Old Facts and a New Theory. To which are added, sketches and adventures. London, Trubner 1873. Octavo publisher's cloth (a little rubbed and flecked); [8],166,[2]pp. Au$165

Uncommon; a crusade in the cause of Spiritualism, bellicose but not unfair according to the author: "If I have punished my adversaries, ... [I fight] with the spirit of the pugilist or fencer, and not with the feelings of an enemy". Crosland published a version of his essay in 1856 and has reworked it here, given the developments in Spiritualism - and opposition to Spiritualism - in the intervening years. Appended are three short pieces of fiction, the first, 'Hartsore Hall' is a ghost story.
Crosland's career, in literary terms, is overshadowed by that of his wife - Mrs Newton Crosland oddly enough - but his works were not unambitious; they include his 'New Principia' (1884) in which he overturns Newtonian theories of the universe. He did publish an autobiography late in life (1898) but that has so far eluded me as effectively as his 'Principia'.


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DAVIES, Charles Maurice. Heterodox London: or, Phases of Free Thought in the Metropolis. London, Tinsley 1874. Two volumes octavo publisher's brown cloth blocked in black and gilt. A quite good pair. Au$250

First edition. I must admit I took no notice of Davies' more successful books 'Orthodox London' and 'Unorthodox London' in the past, dismissing them as church stuff. Thanks to an article by Arnold Hunt in the Book Collector, in their handy occasional series 'Uncollected Authors', I learnt that both Davies and his books are more interesting than that.
Davies was an Anglican cleric who turned to scribbling and ended up a disgrace. His 'London' books are frontline, occasionally undercover, reportage of the wild and woolly boomtime spiritual life of London. In 'Heterodox London', apparently the least successful of the series (it never made it into a second edition - the Freethought crowd bought and remaindered a fair number of copies), he has turned to the secularists, the free-thinkers, working-men's associations, radicals, atheists, vegetarians, socialists, spiritualists ... rabble rousers of all creeds. He attends a debate of the Dialectical Society on cremation, listens to Bradlaugh argue away the existence of God, attends a Positivist school. Davies is chatty, amiable, tolerant and thorough and the reader gets the impression that the further he travels from the acceptable the more he likes it. And it seems to have been true.
His final disgrace in the church was not due to any forgiveable heresy - he was accused of the attempted rape of a teenage girl - but he continued to regard himself as a churchman; just the minister of an increasingly bizarre personal church. Hunt's article obliges with excerpts from reviews of his books, appreciative to the first but increasingly scathing or indignant as each book appeared. This one was "vulgar, often offensive" and evil in "the undue prominence it gives to nobodies and their very unimportant opinions" (Pall Mall Gazette and Tinsley's Magazine respectively).


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[HOBSON, Benjamin]. [Hakubutsu Shinpen]. Tokyo, 1874 (Meiji 7). Three volumes, 255x173mm, publisher's yellow wrappers with title labels (a bit smudged); wood cut illustrations in all three volumes. Rather good with the original printed outer wrapper loosely inserted and untorn. Au$300

Third edition, it seems, of this adaptation of Hobson's Bo Wu Xin Bian first published in Shanghai in 1855 and in Japan in 1864. Hobson wrote a few primers on science and medicine for the Chinese which were then adapted by the Japanese. This covers physics in the first volume - including such things as optics, electricity and hydraulics; astronomy in the second; and zoology in the third.


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HANDS, Joseph. Will-Ability; or, Mind and its Varied Conditions and Capacities. A dissertation and explanation of the mystery of Will-Ability, Mind-Energy, or Mental Volition, as exercised in controlling ourselves, or the thoughts, feelings, and acts of others; exemplified, especially as to the latter capabilities, by the faculty of Electro-Biology, or Animal Magnetism, and the Influence of Fascination. Illustrated by facts. Also observations on the consequences effected in us through the quality or dominion of Faith and Belief, or Self-Will Operation, as influenced by the phrenological organ of hope, and called into active being, through the agency of education and persuasion, and other means, as Charms, Spells and Amulets, to which are added essays on Free-Will and Fate, Destiny and Inevitable Necessity. London, J. Burns [1875]. Octavo publisher's green cloth blocked in black & titled in gilt; viii,158pp. With a grateful inscription from the author to Miss M. Wait, who transcribed the book; Hands has also made a few additions to the text. Au$300

Can you think of any mid-Victorian fad, hobby-horse or loony fringe preoccupation not covered in the title? Clairvoyancy? Perhaps so but that appears on page two as part of Hands' work treating patients by animal magnetism. Anything missed here probably appears in two of his other books, one on beauty and the laws of its attainment, the other seems to cover the rest of the laws of the universe. He also wrote on homeopathy, isopathy (?), dietetics and promised to write on vaccination (for the affirmative).
Hands was a London homeopath but, knowing nothing more whatsoever about him, all we can add is that this is humanitarian reform; Hands is convinced that practical application of his principles would sweep away 'nearly every species of crime'. Punishment having proved worse than useless, leniency, benevolence and education are necessary.


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PLEASONTON, Gen. A.J. The Influence of the Blue Ray of the Sunlight and of the Blue Color of the Sky, in developing animal and vegetable life, in arresting disease, and in restoring health ... Philadelphia, Claxton, Remsen &c 1876. Octavo publisher's blue cloth blocked in gilt and blind; iv,38,185pp, frontispiece printed in blue and black and a couple of illustrations through the text (which is blue). An outstanding copy. Au$350

Pleasonton won his way from Captain to Brigadier-General during the Civil War but I gather from his multitude of unadmirers it was not due to heroism or competency in the field. Still he was not satisfied and resigned from the army in a huff. In the meantime he had decided to apply his scientific bent to agriculture and built a glass-house paned with blue glass panels to "test the chemical power of the solar ray" with wondrous results. He extended his experiments to husbandry and before long blue light was curing ailments and saving the lives of both animals and humans.
The craze made it into song in 1877 with The Blue Glass Galop, The Blue Glass Scottische and maybe others. Pleasonton published his first lecture in 1871 and this 1876 book seems to be the definitive collection of lectures, letters and writings.
His experiments are now not so easy to read - to alleviate the glare caused by black print on white paper under gaslight this is printed in blue on tinted paper. I have seen a couple of American books of the period printed in a similar manner and had presumed that it was just an unfortunate aesthetic choice - now I know it was progress at work.


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SHAW, Eyre M. Fire Protection. A complete manual of the organization, machinery, discipline, and general working, of the fire brigade of London. London, Charles and Edwin Layton 1876. Octavo publisher's cloth; xiii,332pp and an illustrated 64 page "Appendix of Manufacturers' and other Advertisements, having reference to Fire Protection", numerous illustrations and diagrams, a plate and a double page map. Some foxing at the ends but a rather good copy. Au$800

First edition. Essential in fire fighting history. As far as Shaw was concerned, this was the first attempt in any language "approaching to a complete or comprehensive scheme" to embody the essential principles and practice of fire fighting. In other countries printed manuals "of some kind or another have been in use for many years .. but they are meagre in the extreme and .. altogether useless for the instruction of fire brigades charged with the protection of great commercial cities". Shaw was of course responsible for the modern London fire department, in turn the model for fire departments around the world.


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RICHARDSON, Benjamin Ward. Hygeia a City of Health. London, Macmillan 1876. Octavo disbound; 47pp. Last leaf loose. Au$200

The sanitary reformer's outline for an utopian city of 100,000 people which he is confident that, within two generations, will reduce mortality to five per thousand. An outline it is, but a closely worked one; from the laying out of streets - with subway trains beneath - to their paving and camber. It is to be, more a less, a garden city but the detail is in the details, to coin a paraphrase.
Housing is treated particularly: nothing is to be below ground; the brickwork is to be impermeable but laid with removable wedges that allows cavity air to be flushed or heated; the interior walls and arched ceilings are to be of glazed brickwork (of colours and patterns to the inhabitants' taste and purse) which makes unnecessary the poisons of glues, papers and distempers - and allows the complete interior to be washed down with water. Each room is worked out - by purpose, placement and design; communication and ventilation provided.
Outside, factories, sanitation works, abbatoirs and suchlike are removed some distance from the city and trades (tailoring, shoe-making, lacework) are taken out of the homes to convenient blocks of offices and workrooms. Small, almost portable, model hospitals are provided every few blocks and the insane, infirm and incapacitated are cared for in houses indistinguishable from the rest. Given the debate on cremation vs burial, Richardson plumps for tradition but not current practice. The dead are to be interred in shrouds only into artificial carboniferous soil where they can return to dust in no time at all; monuments can be erected in some hall or temple.


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RICHARDSON, Benjamin Ward. Hygeia a City of Health. London, Macmillan 1876. Octavo publisher's printed tangerine wrapper (rubbed, worn along the spine); 48pp. A bit used; pretty good. Au$350

The sanitary reformer's outline for an utopian city of 100,000 people which he is confident that, within two generations, will reduce mortality to five per thousand. An outline it is, but a closely worked one; from the laying out of streets - with subway trains beneath - to their paving and camber. It is to be, more a less, a garden city but the detail is in the details, to coin a paraphrase.
Housing is treated particularly: nothing is to be below ground; the brickwork is to be impermeable but laid with removable wedges that allows cavity air to be flushed or heated; the interior walls and arched ceilings are to be of glazed brickwork (of colours and patterns to the inhabitants' taste and purse) which makes unnecessary the poisons of glues, papers and distempers and allows the complete interior to be washed down with water. Each room is worked out by purpose, placement and design; communication and ventilation provided.
Outside, factories, sanitation works, abbatoirs and suchlike are removed some distance from the city and trades (tailoring, shoe-making, lacework) are taken out of the homes to convenient blocks of offices and workrooms. Small, almost portable, model hospitals are provided every few blocks and the insane, infirm and incapacitated are cared for in houses indistinguishable from the rest. Given the debate on cremation vs burial, Richardson plumps for tradition but not current practice. The dead are to be interred in shrouds only, into artificial carboniferous soil where they can return to dust in no time at all. Monuments can be erected in some hall or temple.


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Shinoda Senka & Utagawa Yoshiharu, [Meiji Eimei Hyakueisen]. Tokyo, Murakami 1879? 18x12cm publisher's wrapper with title label; one double page and one full page colour woodcut, 120 half page woodcuts on 60 double folded leaves. Two clean tears across the paste down title page without loss, a well read copy but solid and decent enough. The illustrations, not so well printed, are by Utagawa Yoshiharu. Au$100

A popular, poetic, gallery of famous folk of the Meiji period - the first bit of it anyway. There are the expected statesmen and lords but there are also scholars, a handful of women and what look to to be unsavoury reprobates. Perhaps they are great statesmen. I'm equally ignorant about the verse with each portrait. I presume these aren't cheeky limericks or Clerihews.


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Shinoda Senka & Utagawa Yoshiharu, [Meiji Eimei Hyakueisen]. Tokyo, Murakami 1879. 18x12cm publisher's wrapper with title label; one double page, one full page colour woodcut, 120 half page woodcuts - all but a couple coloured - on 60 double folded leaves. Inscription on the back cover; a nice copy. The illustrations are by Utagawa Yoshiharu. Au$400

First edition and a deluxe coloured copy of this popular, poetic, gallery of famous folk of the Meiji period - the first bit of it anyway. There are the expected statesmen and lords but there are also scholars, a handful of women and what look to to be unsavoury reprobates. Perhaps they are great statesmen. I'm equally ignorant about the verse with each portrait. I presume these aren't cheeky limericks or Clerihews. I don't know how rare coloured copies are but I haven't found another amongst the recorded copies.


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ALDRICH, T.B. The Stillwater Tragedy. Boston, Houghton Mifflin 1880. Octavo, excellent in publisher's brown cloth blocked in gilt, red and black. Au$175

First edition; classic detective fiction and an anti-labour novel, with a murdered corpse at the end of the first chapter and an unjustly suspected hero standing up to thuggish strike leaders. While barely inflammatory - the author and printer did not, after all, have to go into hiding - this novel did stir up more conversation than usual amongst his readers. His readers can't have been expected to take much exception to it: Twain wrote to Aldrich that he had enjoyed reading it in the notorious periodical of Howells and that Mrs Clemens was looking forward to it between baby feeds. The connections between Aldrich and the extreme anti-labor literature of the late 19th century are not hard to trace.


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Sada Kaiseki. [Fukoku Ayumi Hajime]. Tokyo, Sada 1880 (Meiji 13). Woodcut broadside 36x52cm, stencil coloured? Expert repairs to the folds at each side and in the centre, some stains. Folded as issued with the outer wrapper woodcut mounted on old paper. Au$1750

This captivating woodcut which looks like an advertisement for imported treasures is instead a strident protest and attack on these gewgaws. Sada was a troublesome priest but no reactionary flat-earther. He developed complex theories of science, culture and economics and saw the opening of Japan to this slew of imports as the cause of inflation and hardship for the lower classes. This woodcut was produced to promote the boycott of foreign goods and lists specific targets. Sada spent the last years of his life organising boycott societies and died - in 1882 - on a lecture tour.
The presence of a wrapper with this print suggests to me this was not given away, it was sold. Worldcat finds no copy. Waseda University illustrates two copies, one in better shape but carelessly coloured compared to this. The other is fairly worm eaten. They do have a wrapper, which, according to the provenance, belongs to their better copy but it is separately catalogued without any mention of Sada.


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Photography - Japan. Portraits from photographs scrupulously hand painted to impersonate lithographs. n.p. [c1880-1890?]. Two sheets, 54x41cm and 60x48cm, with nine portraits all but one oval; each about 25cm - ten inches - high. Au$450

Are these the ultimate modern one-up-manship in family portraiture? Painted over photos are common enough and paintings from photos equally so but these are large scale, done from scratch purposely to mimic the grain of lithography. The stippling is so painstaking and exact that it would have been easier to make and print lithographs.
By the 1880's reaction to modernity and the west, by nationalists watching their tradition vanish, was strident and often powerful. Don't forget the western design of the residence of the new Imperial Palace was abandoned after earthquake damage to brickwork and the official carpenter took over. No small victory for superior Japanese traditions. The arguments over portraiture and photography are often unexpected, confusing and contradictory to me. Schools that I would think traditionalist welcomed the camera and realism - though some disliked photo portraits for moral or ethical reasons - but whatever the argument the photograph and its wedded industry - portraits painted in oils over or from photos - became ubiquitous essentials for the family shrine.
Our well to do family is not only on the side of western modernity, they go one step further by embracing the foreign technology of the lithographic print. So why hand painted on such a scale? Maybe partly because that's what a prominent family can afford but likely because portraits like this were still private family affairs. According to Conant (Challenging Past and Present), the painter Takahashi - portraitist of the Emperor - was thwarted in his 1880s project to paint portraits of the heroes of the Meiji by families refusing him use of their photographs.
The smaller set of portraits here is signed and sealed Hokushu. The other, clearly later, has an illegible, to me, seal.


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Public health, quarantine & sanitation. A collection of sixteen reports on vaccination, quarantine, disease and sanitation in Sydney. Sydney, Govt printer 1881-84. Foolscap, together in modern cloth. Signs of use, a few short tears, a couple of plans with repairs, minor but for the plan of the Little Bay Sanatorium (with report 12 - a revised version of that with report 6) which is in pieces but all there. Au$950

A modern binding but not a modern gathering: there is a contemporary handwritten list of contents at the front. This has every sign of being compiled by a body like the Board of Health. The Report of the Board on the small-pox epidemic has been extensively marked up and corrected by hand. Each of these is worth its own long maundering note, but. All these papers come in some way out of the small-pox outbreak of 1881-82 and you may not be surprised that it become political real fast. It was a debacle. First among the blameworthy were the Chinese, blamed for introducing the disease, then rightly came the officials, disorganisation, unreadiness and general incompetence top to bottom. The vaccination paper records the lengthy opinions of fifteen esteemed medicos and largely concerns small-pox - still the only vaccination there was. All but John Le Gay Brereton were in favour. He regarded vaccination an evil worse than disease.
Sixteen pages on schools versus 66 pages on wood pavements may seem unbalanced until you read the board's report and the evidence and realise that given how many roads were paved with wood it's a wonder that anyone was alive - not swept away by yellow fever. Thank heaven for Australian hardwoods. The Fijian representative to the 1884 conference couldn't make it - the steamer bringing the invitation was placed in quarantine.
(1) Compulsory Vaccination. Opinions of ... ; 55pp; (2) Report of the Royal Commission ... upon the management of the Quarantine Station, North Head, and the Hulk "Faraway"; (xiv),118pp; (3) Second Report ... Quarantine Station ... ; 13pp and folding plan; (4) Instructions to the Assistant Health Officer, stationed at Watson's Bay. 3pp; (5) Quarantine Station, North Head. (Report of Health Officer upon state and conditions ... ; 14pp and five plans, three folding; (6) Report of the Board of Health Upon the Late Epidemic of Small Pox, 1881-1882; 20pp and two large folding plans; (7) Quarantining of Steamship "Gunga"; 52pp; (8) Quarantine of Mail-Steamer "Rome" (Correspondence); 8pp; (9) Board of Health (Attendance of Members of, and Subjects ... ; 2pp; (10) Mortality on Board Immigrant Ships. (Report by Medical Officer ...); 2pp; (11) Management of the Sydney Hospital (Report of Committee of Inquiry into Certain Complaints); 27pp; (12) Hospital Accomodation and Position for the City of Sydney; 10pp and large folding plan; (13) Report of Dr. Clark on the Sanitary Condition of the Public Schools in the City of Sydney, and Suburbs; 16pp; (14) Wood Pavement Board. Report, minutes of proceedings, and appendix; 66pp; (15) The Australasian Sanitary Conference of Sydney ... 1884. Report, minutes of proceedings, and appendix. 70pp and five large folding maps and plans; (16) Ad Interim Report Upon Recent Cases of Small-Pox. 6pp.


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BUCHNER, Louis. Force and Matter: Empirico-philosophical studies, intelligibly rendered .. edited by J. Frederick Collingwood. London, Trubner 1881. Octavo publisher's cloth; vi,284pp & publisher's list. Au$50

Third English edition with the additional notes from the tenth German incorporated in the text. Buchner wrote an introduction specifically for the English translation.


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HANDS, Joseph. Beauty, and the Laws Governing its Development; with suggestions on education, relative to the attainment of beauty. London, E.W. Allen [1882?]. Slender octavo, very good in publisher's decorated ochre cloth blocked in black and gilt; 88pp. Au$475

Only edition and elusive, just like describing Hand's writings in a simple and clear way. Hands was a London physician cum homeopath, apparently still respectable - viz his membership of the Royal College of Surgeons presuming his claim is true - and wrote works best, or most easily, described as thoroughly Victorian lunatic fringe: on will-ability and mind-energy, on the laws of matter and motion, and here, on aesthetics. Hands begins with seven aphorisms, one of which was Hogarth's, all sensible enough; the last is quite noble. But from there he leaps from the ideal human form (5'10" tall for man; 5'6'' for woman) to electro-polar action to colour to the lapse of time like an ibex in the high alps and following him leaves us breathless and bewildered.


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Japan - gymnastics. [Taiso Kyohan - Manual of Gymnastics]. Ministry of War, 1884 (Meiji 17). 150x110mm in what appear to be original cloth backed boards (spine a touch nibbled); 37 double folded leaves (ie 74pp) and 73 full page illustrations (5 folding) numbered to 32 with several bis. A little worming, nothing notable, and a couple of small stains; a quite good fresh copy. Possibly lithographed throughout. Au$300

The Japanese first got in French experts on military physical training in the late 1860s and the first Japanese book I've been able to trace was a translation of part of an 1847 manual the French visitors brought with them. That is I've traced mention of it, not the book itself. This manual also has the look of coming from a French manual but, being light on in French gymnastic manuals of the mid nineteenth century here, I don't know which one. Certainly it models the fine mustachios that became de rigueur for dashing Japanese officers.
The Taiso Kyohan apparently also became the model for gymnastics in secondary schools as the idea of physical education was introduced into Japan. There were many editions of the Taiso Kyohan, presumably updated and changed as the decades went on but I'm unable to trace any copy this early in a library catalogue.


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OKAMOTO, K.S. [Konseki]. Ancient and Modern Various Usages of Tokio Japan. . Tokyo, Morito 1885. 23x15cm publisher's wrapper with printed title label (wrapper somewhat grubby, label chipped and another old label on the front); 62 double folded leaves, colour woodblock illustrations throughout, one double page, three full page. Used but a most acceptable copy. Au$850

A beguiling and puzzling book. Is it a souvenir for tourists? a primer for westerners learning Japanese? a primer for Japanese learning English? It could be any or all of these. Apart from some hats, and despite the title, there are few signs of the modern world. So, obviously it's for tourists. But why is so much of the text, all the explanatory stuff, in Japanese? The sections on "Celebreted Article and Food" and "Names of Cake" are unillustrated Japanese text. And why are those hats there? So it isn't for tourists. Then why so old world? Is it for Japanese readers as a reminder of what they might lose in the rush to modernise? The opponents of westernisation - and there were plenty - didn't usually write books like these and Okamoto published an "Elementary Spelling Book" a couple of years after this. And why are those hats there? My guess is that it is an attempt to be all things to everyone but those hats still worry me.


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GEORGE, Henry. Protection or Free Trade. An examination of the tariff question with especial regard to the interests of labour. NY, Henry George 1886. Octavo publisher's cloth (a bit rubbed); 359pp. Au$50

First edition.


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Yamamoto G.S. [Tadashi]. The Conversations for Officers and Merchants, of the Japanese and English. [Eiwa Bunsho Kaiwahen]. Osaka, S.H. Okajima 1887. Small octavo (16x12cm) publisher's roan backed decorated boards (rubbed); [10],173,[1],[2 colophon]pp. Title page printed in red and black within a gold frame. Rear endpaper removed, rather good and fresh inside. Au$600

A pleasing little book with the usual amount of baffling and useless conversational gambits plus an emphasis on social niceties - dinners, drinking, dancing and so forth - and business. Worldcat finds only the NDL copy and so can I.


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Prisons. Report with Minutes of Evidence Taken Before the Board of Inquiry Appointed to Inquire Into the General Management of the Gaols, Penal Establishments, and Lockups of the Colony of Queensland. Brisbane, Govt Printer 1887. Foolscap, stitched as issued; lxxxii,307pp and four folding plans. Number scrawled on the title which is browned and the last plate a bit ragged but all there. Au$200

The turning point of the prison system in Queensland, this commission brought new prisons, general reform and the Prisons Act of 1890. The evidence contains a wealth of useful and intriguing detail; the commission examined prisoners, turnkeys, warders, surgeons, police, magistrates, and an architect.


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