Taking place in a week's time, the sale will present 169 lots including two antique natural history guides:
A complete set of 17 volumes (plus four supplemental) of Encyclopédie, ou Dictionnaire Raisonné des Sciences, des Arts et des Métiers by Denis Diderot and Jean le Rond d'Alembert was first published back in 1751.
"A monument in the history of European thought; the acme of the age of reason … and a classic example of how not to arrange a work of reference." was one description of the eclectic but beautiful work. It is expected bring £10,000-15,000 (up to $24,600).
The top lot however is likely to be William Curtis's The Botanical Magazine, bound in 167 volumes representing editions from as early as 1793 and as late as 1983. It includes 10,569 plates, of which 9,684 are hand-coloured engravings or lithographs and the remainder colour-printed.
Uniformly bound in half morocco, the publication was:
"The first and most important botanical magazine made up of 'figures' of plants and their descriptions. Provides a storehouse of exotics paralleling the indigenous plants similarly treated in Smith and Sowerby's English Botany." according to expert Hunt. It could make an interesting alternative investment.
It is expected to achieve £15,000-20,000 (up to $32,800) in the sale which takes place on June 14 in London.
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