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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Many small brush & black ink drawings in the margins throughout. 111 folding leaves. 8vo (232 x 157 mm.), later patterned wrappers, new stitching. [Japan]: (in trans.): “copied by Tanaka on 29 January 1830.”
The index on the first two pages describes the arrangement of the manuscript: by sections of the body. These include the upper section (head, eyes, nose, teeth, throat, and lungs), middle section (heart, abdomen, hips), and lower section (urinary tract, large intestine, rectum, and legs). This is followed by one page describing treatments, which are either fast-acting or long-term. There is a further division of treatments for women (including reproductive organs), children...
24; 46 folding leaves. Two vols. 8vo, orig. blue wrappers, orig. block-printed title labels on upper covers, new stitching. Osaka, Kyoto, Nagoya, & Edo: Kawachiya Kihei et al., 1848.
Second edition (1st ed.: 1770); both editions are very rare. This book, in Chinese with Japanese reading marks, is the commentary by Asai (1706-80), the famous painter of bamboo and court physician of the Owari fiefdom, on the biography of Bian Que (active sometime in 5th-3rd centuries B.C.), the founding father of scientific Chinese medicine. This biography first appeared in Shiji [Records of the Grand Historian], written by Sima Qian. The Shiji, completed ca. 94...
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...
80 pp. 8vo (216 x 135 mm.), early 20th-cent. cloth-backed marbled boards & orig. printed wrappers mounted on stubs, gilt title on spine. Paris: Bonnefons Delavialle, Ch. Paillet; London: Treuttel & Wurtz, Jarman; Amsterdam: Dufour & De la Chaux; Brussels: Danot; Berlin: Logier & Simon Schropp; Vienna: Schabacher, .
A fascinating and rare auction catalogue of an extensive and influential collection of Asian artifacts belonging to a “F. Sallé,” with many contemporary pencil annotations in the margins. We have been unable to ascertain his first name, but Sallé appears in numerous early 19th-century Parisian auction catalogues as the commissaire-priseur.
This was the greatest collection of Chinese materials after that of the renowned sinophile Henri Léonard Jean Baptiste Bertin (1720-92), powerful ministre d’Etat under Louis XV and XVI. Most of Bertin’s collection was dispersed in 1792 without a catalogue; in 1815, a catalogued auction (Lugt 8637) was held to sell off the final portion of the collection.
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.
Japan: [from first passage]: “Kae 6,” i.e., 1853, and at end “copied 1854.”
A rare type of “Black Ship Scroll”: our scroll is unusual as it has accounts of not only the first Perry expedition but also the competing Russian mission of August 1853. Moreover, it contains many finely rendered illustrations that do not appear in the majority of other extant “Black Ship Scrolls.”
The opening of Japan to trade was a goal of many European nations from the 17th century onwards. All attempts fell short until 1853, when the United States forced negotiations to open the island nation. These manuscript reports contain...
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...
12 full-page illus. in the text. 42 folding leaves. 8vo, orig. blue wrappers, block-printed title printed on upper cover, new stitching. [Beijing]: Zhen qun guo yin shu ju, [1921?].
First edition of this historical account of the astronomical instruments constructed by the Jesuits in the 17th century at the emperor’s request for the Beijing observatory. There are 12 full-page illustrations of the instruments. Chang has also provided a history of the observatory.
Chang (1874-1939), a graduate of the Northern Naval College in Tianjin, was a student of Yan Fu (1854-1921), scholar and translator, who is most famous for introducing Western ideas, including Darwin’s...
Full-page woodcut of a mathematician teaching two students & many woodcut diagrams in the text, including an abacus. 12 parts in six vols. 8vo, orig. wrappers (a little frayed), new stitching. [China]: Sao ye shan fang, 1883.
A late edition (1st ed.: 1592) of this important work on mathematical computation and the abacus; it contains 592 problems in 12 chapters. Cheng (1533-1606), was a government official and an avid collector of books on mathematics. The present work, while not particularly original, is important for its compilation of problems from earlier works. It is a practical book aimed at assisting those who need to calculate.
The original edition of this book is the “oldest now extant that contains a diagram of the form of the abacus, called suan-pan, and the explanation of its use…[and is also] famous for containing some magic squares and magic circles.”–Cajori, A History of Mathematics, p. 76.
Ten columns per page, 18 characters per column. 49; 55 folding leaves. Two vols. 8vo (280 x 198 mm.), orig. brown wrappers (upper cover of Vol. I somewhat soiled, wrappers of Vol. II a little wormed), new stitching. [Japan, perhaps on Mount Hiei: ca. 1600-40].
An extremely rare movable type edition; not in Kawase or Sorimachi. WorldCat locates only a copy, at Kyoto University. Our copy comes from the famous collection of Toshie Obama with his seal at the foot of the first leaf of Vol. I.
Chih yun was a disciple of Tiantai Zhiyi (538-97), one of the most influential monks in Chinese Buddhist...
[China: ca. 1862-74].
A rare and notable survival: a collection of ca. 1470 pieces of wooden movable type of the late Qing dynasty. These three cases of wooden movable type of Chinese characters come from the collection of retired Prof. Shiro Nakabayashi of the Daito Bunka University in Tokyo, where he taught Chinese literature for many years. On his website (see below), he describes and illustrates the largest font case, which contains the larger type (each 16 x 16 x 20 mm.), as having been cut ca. 1862-74. The smaller type measures 7 x 7 x 17 mm. and appears to be of the same period.
By the middle of the 19th century, Western printing technologies had completely replaced any need for wooden type in China. Its use was limited to print runs of 100 copies or fewer, mostly of privately published or forbidden books.
Two parts in one vol. Small folio, orig. wrappers (somewhat tired & a little soiled, some light staining & soiling here & there), manuscript title on upper cover, later stitching. [Hansong (Seoul): Kyujanggak (the Royal Library), Preface dated 1793 & 1796].
First edition of this handsome and large-format (323 x 217 mm.) royal publication. King Chongjo (1752-1800), was one of the most intellectual and enlightened of the Korean monarchs. Perhaps Korea’s greatest bibliophile, as royal patron he supported all aspects of the book: typographers, printers, authors, librarians, and lexicographers. A number of “royal” editions were published under his auspices. He founded the Kyujanggak Library in 1776...
32 fine full-page woodcuts. 42 folding leaves. Large 8vo, orig. blue wrappers (wrappers rather rubbed, minor soiling), modern manuscript label on upper cover, new stitching. [Japan]: from the Japanese colophon on the penultimate leaf: “Nakano Zesui had the woodblocks carved & published this book mid-July 1655.”
First edition to be published in Japan, printed in Chinese with Japanese reading marks. Yongming Yanshou (J.: Eimei (or Yomei) Enju, 904-75), was a Chan master who had a profound impact on the development of Buddhism in East Asia. Yanshou was a widely influential proponent of a scripture-based Chan, in opposition to the rhetorical and iconoclastic Chan of...
Ten vols. 8vo, orig. wrappers, orig. block-printed title labels on upper covers in Chinese, orig. stitching; orig. publisher’s chitsu with block-printed title label in both Chinese & Manchu. [China, probably Beijing]: from the “pillar”at the edge of each folded leaf: “Kong gu jushi”; end of Preface in Vol. I: 1869.
A reprint, with additions, of the “seminal” (Laamann) Chinese-Manchu dictionary first published in 1735 by the 18th-century scholar Mingduo Dongjia. It is a revised version of the great Chinese-Manchu dictionary first published under the sponsorship of Emperor Kangxi in 1708. As in the Kangxi edition, the material in Dongjia’s edition...
Many fine drawings, some double-page, some single-page, a few heightened in wash of several colors. 47 folding leaves. Large 8vo (298 x 217 mm.), orig. wrappers (wrappers somewhat soiled), new stitching. [Japan: early to mid-Edo].
A fine and well-illustrated equine medicine manuscript, based on the traditional Chinese veterinary medical theories of the five organs (liver, heart, spleen, lung, and kidney), their seven related personality traits (anger, fear, disgust, happiness, sadness, surprise, and contempt), and eight elements of pulse condition at the six locations. There is also a substantial section on the use of moxibustion for treating the liver, heart, lung, kidney, and other...
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...
52 vols. Small 8vo, orig. wrappers, orig. block-printed title labels on upper covers. [Shanghai]: Yu lin shu ju, .
First edition of this important collection of classic Chinese historical texts, all written in the jishi benmo style, in which particular historical events are arranged around certain central themes. We have listed the authors and texts below, and all quoted texts are taken from the online resource ChinaKnowledge.de, maintained by Dr. Ulrich Theobald at the Department of Sinology, University of Tübingen.
The authors and texts are:
75; 64 folding leaves. Two vols. 8vo (275 x 180 mm.), orig. pale blue wrappers (label on upper covers rather corroded but legible), new stitching. [Japan]: Preface dated March 1755.
A rare commentary by the Japanese Aizu(?) fiefdom doctor Setsuo Kagayama on Wan jin yi tong by Tingxian Gong (1522-1619), physician of the Imperial Medical Academy in Beijing. The Wan jin yi tong is part of a larger work, the Wanbing Huichun of 1585 [Restoration of Health from Myriad Diseases], the author’s most famous work, which had pharmaceutical recipes from about 240 different ingredients.
Gong came from a prominent family of physicians in Jiangxi Province. He became well known at age 71 after curing a case of severe abdominal distention suffered by the favorite concubine of the king of Lu. He wrote many medical books in his later years.
Many fine full-page woodcuts. 56; 51; 42 folding leaves. Three vols. Large 4to (337 x 260 mm.), orig. yellow wrappers, orig. block-printed title labels on upper covers (labels a bit frayed), new stitching (a little loose). [China]: from title-page in trans.: “woodblocks owned by Yi xue xuan, 1801.”
An important and uncommon large-format edition of the “first of all Chinese encyclopaedias, containing so much botanical and zoological terminology.”–Needham, Science and Civilisation in China, Vol. 6, Part 1: Botany, p. 191. This edition of the Er Ya contains the enlargements and commentary of Guo Pu (276-324), considered “the greatest commentator of the Erh Ya” (Needham, p. 188).
Guo, Chinese historian, poet, and writer, is best known as one of China’s foremost commentators of ancient texts and was a notable natural historian. Considered the most learned man of his age, he was also the first to define feng shui. Today, his edition of the Er Ya is considered to be authoritative and definitive, and without his glosses and commentaries, large portions of this text would be unintelligible.
40 parts in 12 vols. 8vo, orig. brown wrappers, new stitching. [China]: Liang yi tang, 1763.
A rare edition of this anthology of early Chinese writings, collected by Yu Han (766-824), “a major figure in the history of Chinese literature, comparable in stature to Dante, Shakespeare, or Goethe in their respective literary traditions. He was among that small group of writers whose works not only became classics of the language — required reading for all those with claims to literacy in succeeding generations — but whose writings redefine and change the course of the tradition itself. Although Han Yu is best-known as a....
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...
Many maps in the text. 500 parts in 60 vols. Small 8vo, orig. wrappers, stitched. [Hangzhou: Zhu jian zhai, 1897].
The famous Da Qing yi tong zhi was the government-sponsored survey and geographical description of the entire Qing empire. The first version, started in 1686, appeared in 1744. Changes in administration, particularly in the border regions, made necessary a new, enlarged edition, which was published in 1784, and additional changes required another, further enlarged edition in 1842. At the end of the 19th, our revised edition appeared.
“Beginning with the capital Beijing, the imperial geography describes every province and prefecture of the Qing empire, ending with the...