An extremely rare survival: an uncommonly tall and large wooden training mannequin, called in Japan do-ningyo (“copper doll,” even those no longer made of bronze), in very good condition. It is most unusual to have such a mannequin of a female; the male figure is usually presented. Certain motifs of the model suggest it was carved in the Chinese or Indian style.
The first examples of similar models originated in 11th-century China, where life-size human acupuncture figures were cast from bronze. “The metal walls of the figures were pierced with small holes corresponding to the principal loci for...
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Two manuscript volvelles, each with a rotating paper disc & diagrams in the text. 51 folding leaves. 8vo (230 x 165 mm), orig. aubergine wrappers, new stitching. [Japan: mid- to later 18th cent.].
Shuhaku Asai (1643-1705), was a fellow student with Ippo Okamoto of the prominent doctor Sanpaku Ajioka. Asai was the court doctor to the fiefdom of Owari and was considered to be one of Japan’s leading authorities on traditional Chinese medicine. His secret writings on acupuncture have all remained in manuscript, and his private lectures were copied by several generations of students.
This manuscript begins with a discussion of the yin and yang of the five organs and the acupuncture meridians. There is an explanation of kotsudo (how to determine the pressure points by measurement of the bones). In ancient China, bone length measurement was widely used as the basis for positioning of acupuncture points, a system called the bone length method. This process of using body landmarks and a relative unit of measurement called a “body inch” was developed in ancient China and has remained in use to the present day.
2 p.l., 94 pp., 11 pp. schedule of sale. 8vo (200 x 130 mm.), orig. marbled paper wrappers preserved in red morocco-backed marbled boards, black morocco lettering-pieces on spine. Paris: Lebrun, 1784.
A rare sale catalogue, priced throughout in two distinct hands and with many buyers’ names, of the first Dubois sale, in which paintings by contemporary French artists and Northern old masters were almost equally represented. The second sale was also conducted by Lebrun, on 20 December 1785 (Lugt 3965), and the third, organized by Paillet, took place on 18 December 1788 (Lugt 4367).
“It was during the 1780s that, for the first time, a number of collections came onto...
126 pp. 8vo (195 x 130 mm.), late 19th-cent. blue sheep-backed marbled boards, spine gilt. Paris: Lebrun, 1788.
A rare auction catalogue, priced throughout in a contemporary hand, of a formidable collection of paintings. Although Lugt attributes this to Montesquiou (1739-98), it seems that most of the lots did not belong to him. Jean Baptiste Pierre Lebrun (1748-1813), this sale’s expert, was known to add his inventory and lesser consignments to prestigious sales for which he was responsible. Montesquiou, member of the Académie Française and a general, was close to many of the physiocrats.
The present catalogue describes 276 lots of paintings by artists such as Giulio Romano, Guercino, Tintoretto, Veronese, Albani, Velazquez, Panini, J. Brueghel the Elder, Bril, Rembrandt, Brauwer, Hals, Teniers, Rubens, A. van Dyck, J. Ruysdael, Potter, Jordaens, A. & I. van Ostade, Metsu, Wynants, Wouwerman, C. Netscher, Miel, N. Berghem, Lairesse, Maes, J. Steen, Lancret, Weenix, Bega, Le Nain, Vouet, G. Poussin, S. Bourdon, Watteau, Coypel, C. Vanloo, F. Boucher, Natoire, Lagrenée aîné & jeune, H. Robert, Greuze, Fragonard, Norblin, etc., etc. The remaining lots consist of ceramics, sculpture, Japanese lacquer and porcelain, ornate pieces of furniture, chandeliers, clocks, and girandoles (for a grand total of 417 lots). The Dutch and Flemish paintings sold for extremely high prices. The annotations also show which lots were bought-in.
Numerous woodcuts in the text. 35 parts in 16 vols. 8vo, orig. wrappers, new stitching. [China]: Xue ku shan fang, 1890.
Second edition (1st ed.: 1880) of the compiler Gu’s collection of writings by Zewei Bu and Bingzhong Liu (both Tang dynasty, 618-907) on feng shui, divination, geomancy, and Chinese astrology. Both the 1880 edition and our edition are very rare. The texts, which first appeared in the 17th century, have remained very popular, and there is also a 1970 (quite wretched) reprint.
Our edition was edited by Zhimo Xu, who lived in the Ming dynasty (1368-1644). The texts include Bu’s Xue xin fu, which...
[China: 18th-19th cent.].
A fine example of a woodblock executed in China, with images on both sides, of the Chinese god Guanyin or Guanshiyin, the Buddhist Bodhisattva associated with compassion, and Cong shen, a Chinese mythological figure.
Minor wear to borders on one side, but in fine condition.
One scroll measuring 277 x 3830 mm. Ink, brush, & wash in red, blue, black, and brown, on paper newly & expertly backed. Japan: after 1853.
A contemporary copy of an official report concerning Commodore Perry’s first expedition, when he attempted to land on Japanese shores in 1853. Much of the scroll is wonderfully illustrated and contains a map tracking the American squadron’s path through Uraga Channel on its way to Edo. The scroll dramatically depicts two American steamships and concludes with the text of four internal government documents concerning the arrival of these foreign ships that contain the contents of high-level discussions on the...
18 p.l., 123 pp. 8vo, cont. marbled wrappers (minor browning). Amsterdam: 1731.
First edition of a very uncommon book. Fourmont (1683-1745), “was the first scholar in France to deal with Chinese matters. He started his career in the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres as a Hebraist and had written several small books on Hebrew matters, but he left this discipline and turned to Chinese in 1711. At that time he met a young French-speaking Chinese man by the name of Arcadio Huang [(1679-1716),] in the Bibliothèque Nationale; Huang was the only Chinese speaking-person in France. Fourmont seized the opportunity to be introduced...
Illus. in the text (Vol. 6 has 13 full-page illus.). Six vols. 8vo, modern wrappers (first leaf of Vol. IV with small defect obscuring one or two characters, Vol. VI with two natural paper flaws touching a few characters of text), new stitching. [China]: two Prefaces dated 1644.
First edition of this influential Chinese ophthalmological work, which records 108 types of eye diseases and has more than 300 prescriptions as well as illustrations and plentiful data. The book discusses medical records of ophthalmology and the theory of five orbiculi (illustrated in the first volume), the eight regions of the whites of the eyes...
Two parts in one vol. 60 folding leaves. 8vo, orig. aubergine patterned wrappers (covers a little defective), orig. block-printed title label on upper cover (label soiled & rubbed), new stitching. Osaka: Harimaya Risuke, 1843 [colophon of the first part is dated 1667; the second part is dated 1816; & the colophon on the rear pastedown is dated 1843].
Second edition of two classic works of Japanese bibliography; the texts were essential guides. Razan Hayashi (1583-1657), was a Japanese neo-Confucian scholar, diplomat, translator of Sinitic texts, and shogunal adviser. He, and his third son Gaho, wrote and edited a number of important chronicles and histories of Japan. One...
Eight columns per page; 17 characters per column. 65; 50; 52; 52; 45; 54; 48; 43; 38; 45; 65 folding leaves. 20 parts & table of contents in 11 vols. Large 8vo (285 x 205 mm.), orig. chestnut-colored semi-stiff wrappers, orig. block-printed labels on upper covers, new stitching. Japan: ca. 1596-1620.
One of several moveable type editions printed in Japan of the collected poetry of Huang (1045-1105), calligrapher, painter, and poet of the Song dynasty. The founder of the Jiangxi school of poetry, he is known as one of the Four Masters of the Song dynasty, along with Su Shi, Mi Fu, and Cai Xiang. Yuan Ren (fl. 1144), has provided a commentary.
This is a finely printed moveable type edition, and this copy was offered in Shigeo Sorimachi’s remarkable catalogue of moveable type Japanese books of 1972, item 173 (in trans.): “ca. 1596-1620 (Keicho, mid-Genna), large typeface, refined and correct type, layout is classic and impressive, has the prestige of Keicho editions. Every volume uses the same size of typeface and therefore harmonious. The red annotations are carefully placed and are reminiscent of the old days of high esthetics. It is rare to have all the labels on the upper covers. On the first leaf are the provenance seals of the Kokushoji [temple] in Bizen, Okayama, and the Horei Bunko collection of Frank Hawley [d. 1964].”
Two full-page woodcuts serving as frontispieces & a full-page woodcut on final leaf. 1 p.l., 38, 38, 29 folding leaves. Three parts in one vol. 8vo, orig. blue wrappers, manuscript title label on upper cover, new stitching. [Guangzhou]: Yao Shi, .
A very rare illustrated printing of the translation by Kumarajiva of the Vimalakirti Sutra, one of the fundamental texts of Chinese Buddhism. Kumarajiva (344-413), Buddhist monk, scholar, missionary, and translator, who came from the Silk Road kingdom of Kucha, was famous for his encyclopaedic knowledge of Indian and Vendantic learning. He was the greatest translator of Buddhist scripture from Sanskrit into Chinese, and it...
Many full-page woodcut illus. Nine columns per page; 20 characters per column. 21; 32 folding leaves. Two vols. incl. addendum. 8vo, orig. wrappers, remains of block-printed title labels on upper covers. Osaka: Bun’eido, [19th century? or earlier?].
This book presents several mysteries. The title-page states “Seppu shoshi Bun’eido shi” [“Osaka publisher Bun’eido published this book”]. In spite of this, the book has all the qualities of a Chinese publication: the text paper and wrappers are clearly Chinese. There is no colophon. It would seem that this book was printed in China for the Japanese market.
The history of the literati scholar in China dates back to the Tang and Song dynasties (A.D. 618-907 and 960-1279, respectively), when the court implemented meritocratic civil exams for the selection of bureaucratic officials. The tests assessed the candidates’ knowledge and ability in a wide range of subjects, including Confucian thought, law, agriculture, and the arts, especially calligraphy, painting, and music. An entire class of intellectual and artistically trained scholars was thus created, many of whom built studios filled with beautiful calligraphy and painting tools, furniture, musical instruments, implements for preparing and consuming tea and wine, and antiques.
Ten columns per page, 18 characters per column. 2, 37, 34, 1 (=74) folding leaves. Two parts in one vol. Small folio (350 x 228 mm.), orig. wrappers (wrappers rather rubbed & somewhat soiled), later stitching. [Jeolla Province: the Governor’s Office], from the colophon: July 1797.
A most uncommon Korean woodblock (?, see below) book, which reproduces the finest of the Korean moveable metal typefaces, the kabinja. “Selections from the memorials of Lu Chih (754-805), the great statesman of the T’ang dynasty. The selections were edited by King Chongjo in 1794 and first printed in mid-1797 by the Royal Printing Office with type from the kabinja font of 1777...
One brush & ink illus. in the text. 9; 7 folding leaves. 8vo (230 x 168 mm.), orig. wrappers (text rather wormed with some relative minor loss of text, carefully repaired), new stitching. [Japan: early mid-Edo].
A most interesting collection of texts based on Chinese writings on the pulse. “Dosan Manase (1507-1594 or 95), [was] perhaps the most famous of the early Japanese physicians, and prolific writer in the entire field of medicine as then practiced in Japan.”–Mestler, Old Japanese Medical Books, I, p. 300. His writings covered all aspects of medicine, including a treatise on diagnosing disease by taking the pulse. Manase “became a....
33; 29; 30; 31; 30; 28 folding leaves. Six vols. 8vo, orig. pale brown wrappers, orig. block-printed title labels on upper covers (in Manchu & Chinese), new stitching. Jingdu: Long fu si Ju zheng tang, 1890.
First edition of this Manchu–Chinese dictionary of terms and phrases, arranged by subject, starting with astronomy and continuing through geography, architecture, medicine, anatomy, rituals, religion, music and musical instruments, literature, education, bibliography, military words, livestock, veterinary medicine, agriculture, natural history, gastronomy, measurements, numbers, transportation, etc., etc. At this time, Manchu was the imperial language of the Qing dynasty.
Many woodcuts & diagrams in the text. 27 vols., including one vol. of Preface, bibliography, & index; three vols. of the Nanjin & Shou Wa’s commentary; three vols. of illus. & remarks on the illus.; & 20 vols. of Morimoto’s commentary. Large 8vo, orig. semi-stiff wrappers (some rubbing & wear, occasional worming), orig. block-printed title labels on upper covers (some missing or worn), new stitching. [Japan]: Preface dated 1678; [according to the Union Catalogue of Early Japanese Books, publication date is 1695, but on what basis, we do not know].
First edition of this rare (not in WorldCat) and extensive commentary on the Nanjin (Classic of Difficult Issues...
Some illus. in the text. 86; 64; 57 folding leaves. Three vols. 8vo (237 x 164 mm.), orig. wrappers (some worming), orig. manuscript title-labels on upper covers, new stitching. [Japan]: on final leaf of third vol.: “1786” & “1791.”
A most unusual manuscript: a collection of texts, both Chinese and Japanese, entirely devoted to moxibustion, its theories, and its practices. Most Japanese manuscripts and books include acupuncture along with moxibustion. What is particularly interesting to us about this manuscript is that many of the texts by these authors seem not to have been published but passed on by word of mouth.
Moxibustion, or the burning of moxa, comes under the rubric of counter-irritation. It is the process burning of a combustible plant, usually mugwort, on or against certain areas of the skin.
Three text leaves with Chinese characters, final conjugate leaf a full-page woodcut with about 65 Chinese characters, & a large folding engraved plate printing in Chinese characters the Kangxi Emperor’s edict of 1716. 58,  pp. Large 4to, orig. decorative wrappers, uncut. Nuremberg & Altdorf: Monath & Kussler, 1802.
First and only edition of an extremely uncommon book. Murr (1733-1811), a resident of Nuremberg, was a scholar with polymathic interests. He edited several intellectual journals, published on libraries and art museums, etc.
This work is, in large part, concerned with the Chinese Rites Controversy and the famous “Red Decree.” The Jesuit missionaries who came to China in...
A richly illustrated manuscript, important and influential in the history of medicine and surgery in Japan, revealing the introduction of European medical knowledge in Japan, through Ambroise Paré’s Chirurgie, Scultetus’s Armamentarium Chirurgicum, and Spigelius’s Opera. This is a luxury copy (only one similar set survives, at Nagasaki), in oblong folio format, and written and finely illustrated on fine thick mulberry paper. Our manuscript contains 134 exquisitely drawn and richly hand-colored illustrations.
Chinzan (or Eikyu) Narabayashi (1648-1711), belonged to a family of professional interpreters in Nagasaki and became proficient in the Dutch language. He had contact with several Dutch...
About 40 finely drawn & colored illus. 16 folding leaves. 8vo (264 x 180 mm.), orig. wrappers, new stitching. [Japan]: late Edo.
This is an extremely finely executed album of illustrated natural history specimens collected from throughout Japan; the nearly 40 illustrations are very well drawn and painted, many with mica or three-dimensional techniques, used in traditional Japanese painting, to make the drawings more realistic. The specimens include botanical, mineral, and animal examples.
The first leaf of the album contains the title and an index of the 22 specimens. These include: a special kind of ivy from Nikko (with Chinese names and where found), a “four-eyes”...
34 folding leaves. Small 4to (237 x 166 mm.), contemporary wrappers, new stitching. [Japan]: at end of orig. Preface & end of scribe’s introduction: “1813.”
Tongue and lip diagnosis has been a vital tool used in traditional Chinese medicine for both assessing the current health of a patient and providing a basis for prognosis. Our text is based on a portion of Zhongjing Zhang’s late 2nd-century work Shanghan lun. “Zhang is known to have compiled this text after an epidemic swept through his hometown of Changsha (in present-day Hunan province), killing numerous family members and decimating the general population. Over the next two centuries...
About 250 black & white woodcuts (about 170 are double-page, a few in red ink). Six vols. Large 8vo, orig. wrappers (quite rubbed, occasional unimportant worming), orig. block printed title label on each upper cover, new stitching. Kyoto: 1806.
First edition of this finely illustrated work of the landmarks, famous sights, art works, and the chief cultural buildings of China in the late 18th century. The illustrators are the well-known Japanese artists Okada Gyokuzan (d. 1808), Yugaku Oka (1762-1833), and Toya Ohara (1771-1840). Okada was the first to create such detailed woodcuts in Japan.
In the meisho travel guide tradition, which had become so popular in Japan at this time, the author discusses and the artists depict in finely detailed woodcuts, many of which are double-page, the historical landmarks, topographical views, palaces, and archaeological and sacred sites of China during the Qing Empire. Maps of China and Korea are included as well as many city views including those of Beijing, the Forbidden City, and the Great Wall’s gates. Additionally, there are illustrations of ceremonial costumes and uniforms, musical instruments, measuring instruments, flower shows, seating arrangements and menus for banquets, government ceremonies with the Emperor, porcelains, the five holy Buddhist mountains, members of the royal family, Tiananmen square, markets with merchants at work, water clocks, parades, etc. There are also many “daily life” woodcuts of the people, their clothes, military formations, weapons, and regular activities.