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the necessaries of life that could be bought then with a piece of gold, and to contrast them with the meagre display such a sum would purchase now. The truth, perhaps, is that, although education was less widely diffused in the days of the Stuarts, it was more deep and thorough. A savant was then like a huge octopus that devastates whole districts and daily grows fatter and more bloated at the expense of everything that moves within reach of its spreading tendrils.

To this effect are we taught by these ancient catalogues, which, however, do not exhaust all their interest in mere matters of prices and fashion. We can learn much from their pages and advertisements of the manners and customs of our ancestors in Bookland. It seems that there were traveling auctioneers a couple of centuries ago who prefaced their remarks with eulogies of the Mayor and Corporation of each town at which they stopped, by way, no doubt, of securing their patronage. Sales began at 8 o'clock in the morning then, and went on, with a midday interval for refreshment, until late at night. Sometimes the auctioneer sold by the candle-end-that is to say, lit a morsel of candle on putting up some coveted volume for competition, and knocked it down to him who had bid the most when the light flickered out. This was, distinctly, an excellent method for bolstering up excitement, for every splutter must have been good for a hasty advance, regretted very possibly when the modicum of tallow entered on a fresh lease of life. When not selling by the candle-end, an auctioneer would dispose of about thirty lots in the course of an hour, and was quite willing to accept the most trifling bids. Business is more rapidly conducted now, for few auctioneers stop to curse their fate or to regale their audience with anecdotes, as one George Smalridge, who in 1689 wrote and published a skit on the prevalent way of doing business, says it was quite the usual custom in his day. His tract is written in Latin, under the title "Auctio Davisiana," and gives a fanciful account of the extraordinary proceedings that took place at the sale of the books of Richard Davis, an ancient bookseller of Oxford, who had fallen into the clutches of the bailiffs. The auctioneer commences with a dirge said, or perhaps sung, over the miserable Davis: "O the vanity of human wishes! O the changeableness of fate and its settled unkindness. to us," etc. Each book is extolled at length, and there are pages of lamentation and woe as Hobbes of Malmesbury, his "Leviathan," "a very large and famous beast," is knocked down, by mistake, for the misearable sum of five pieces of silver.

An exhaustive chapter on early book auctions would necessarily commence with the dispersion of the stock of Bonaventure and Abraham Elzevir at Leyden in April, 1653; but the Elzevirs must

look to themselves, nor as these remarks intended to be even approximately full. Rather are they discursive and in praise of catalogues in the mass; intended merely to put some one else with more space and time at his disposal in the way of rescuing them from the neglect into which they have fallen. The next chapter is more specific, for in that we will take a very famous sale of less antiquity and endeavor to draw comparisons between then and now. And these comparisons will per haps be very odious, for it will necessarily appeal directly to the cupidity of every bookworm that breathes, to every book hunter who prowls around in search of rarities, and returns home-empty handed.

endeth I. From "The Romance of Book Collecting," published by Elliot Stock, London.]



The public always takes an interest in the methods of literary people. The modes in which men write are varied. Where one thinks night and solitude conducive to the flow of thought, another takes the cold light of day to jot down ideas that occur to him. The consensus of opinion among writers themselves is that it is hard work, and the reading public has little or no idea of the time and labor expended in the preparation of a book.

Balzac recommended the night for the artist's work and the day for the author's drudgery. Southey used the evening for poetry and creative power, and Schiller not only sat at his desk at night with champagne near him, but was often heard declaiming while every one was in bed. He found it impossible to work in a room except it was filled with the scent of rotten apples, which he kept in a drawer in his writing desk.

Byron was another night hawk. He always wrote at night and was a late riser. He would return from ball or theater and scribble for hours before retiring. As a As a man he was eccentric, ate little, smoked much, and drank green tea in the evening. Meat and wine he avoided.

Daudet's secret as a novelist was his close study of actual life, and he confessed that the characters in his political novels and those of other works were drawn from nature. He wrote rapidly, and while the ink was still wet would toss sheet after sheet to his wife for criticism.

Bulwer was another rapid writer; the novel "Harold" was written in less than a month, but the writer had scarcely any rest by day or night. He often rewrote before publication, and it is interesting to know that the "Lady of Lyons" was written in only ten days.

The publishers of Henry Ward Beecher's works

are accredited with saying, "He wrote with rapidity, in a large, sprawling hand, the lines were wide apart and thinly scattered."

Wilkie Collins was one of the greatest of novel plotters. He would make a skeleton and proceed to clothe it, and when he started to write would keep on until the fit left him.

There is a story told of Hawthorne, that he made out notes of eccentric persons and places, and always wiped his pen on his dressing gown. His wife noticed it, and one day, bringing his pen to the accustomed spot, the author found stitched thereon a butterfly pen wiper with red and black wings. This was removed and a fresh one stitched on as occasion required.

Unlike Hawthorne, who desired to be alone when he wrote, Burns composed while walking in the open air. When he felt he could imagine in verse he retired to his room and committed his thoughts to paper. A bowl of punch also helped him to court the muses. Wordsworth liked to compose aloud, and did it to such an extent that the peasants questioned his sanity. This habit of talking aloud was also peculiar to Southey.

Of Dickens we are told that "some quaint little bronze figures over his desk were as much needed for the easy flow of his writing as blue ink or quill pen." Method was everything to this prolific writer. He would walk all over town at night, and, as a rule, worked in the morning.

Probably the most industrious of writers was Sir Walter Scott. He arose early and did much work while others were in bed "Woodstock" was completed in less than two weeks after his bankruptcy, he worked so rapidly. His literary labors brought him in $50,000 a year.

"Marmion" was composed while the author was with his cavalry and sitting on a charger. By far the greater part of "The Bride of Lammermoor" and "Ivanhoe" were dictated while under the terrible stimulus of physical pain which wrung groans from the author. Scott would turn on his pillow with a groan of anguish, but would keep on dictating, and would often arise in excitement, walk up and down and act the part. He led a temperate life, but died carlier than Balzac, who lived abnormally. Poor Scott used to say he envied the people that could walk on all fours, meaning that the continuous exercise of his imagination tired him. De Quincy believed that any writer who took artificial methods for stimulating the intellect would work longer than the more temperate man and stimulants are used by many. Eating while at work is a favorite custom with authors. Addison kept his bottle of wine, Schiller drank coffee, and Shelly munched bread while composing.

Kant used to look at an old tower while composing and when the trees grew and hid it from

sight he had the branches cut, as he found himself unable to think at all. We read that Buffon could not think unless in full dress, and he had a hair dresser call twice a day to arrange his hair, as the working on his head acted as a stimulant.— How to Write.


A number of years ago many of the best books in the library of Henry Probasco, of Cincinnati, were purchased privately for the Newberry Library, of Chicago. Lately Mr. Probasco decided to dispose of the remaining portion of his book collection, and accordingly the final part was sold at auction during last winter (January 16-20), the sale being a most successful one, a large and interested audience attending each session. There were 1773 lots in the sale catalogue, and the total, though not announced, must have been large.

The most important of the Probasco books was Purchas' "Pilgrimes," 1625-26, bound in red morocco, by Bedford. It was a fine copy, though it did not have the right map on page 65 of Vol. I., of which Quaritch says but three copies are known. Most copies, including the Probasco, have on this page a small map of the world entitled "Designatio Orbis Christiani" and headed "Hondius his Map of the Christian World," which is but a duplicate of that on page 115 of the same book. The right map, which is in the Grenville copy in the British Museum, in the Ives copy sold here in 1891, and in a copy catalogued by Quaritch in 1890 at £80 (there may be other examples) is entitled "Typis Orbis Terrarum" and is headed "Hondius his Map of the World." But the "Pilgrimes," with either map, is a book of importance to collectors of Americana by reason of its great historic value, Samuel Purchas having let, as Winsor says, over twelve hundred separate narrators of the world's explorations tell their own story, including those who had been on the New England coast. Vols. I.-IV., dated 1625, contain these accounts, and Vol. V., dated 1626, with the title "Purchas his Pilgrimage," is the fourth edition of a work first issued in 1613 and contains an historic account of the customs and religions of the different countries of the world.

The Probasco copy of Purchas brought the fair price of $375. Rice's copy, the first sold in the United States, fetched in 1870, $375, Menzie's, the Sobelewski copy, sold in 1876 for $425, Murphy's, the Duke of York's copy, bought $265 in 1884, Kennedy's $475 in 1889, Barlow's $325 in 1890, Ives', with the right map, $450 in 1891, and Bancroft's $350 at the Lenox Library duplicate sale in 1895. The "Pilgrimes" has rarely approached these prices in the London market, the best recent price, according to records, being the £73 paid in

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July, 1887, for a copy containing the right map "Typis Orbis Terrarum," of which (vide catalogue) "Mr. Grenville's is the only other known." spring in Boston the Pequot Library, of Southport, Conn., secured for $382.50 Charles Deane's copies of the "Pilgrimes," the "Pilgrimage" of 1613, 1614, 1617, and Thomas Prince's own copy of Vol. IV. of the "Pilgrimes," all sold together in one lot, The Lenox Library has four copies of the "Pilgrimes," there is a copy in the New York Historical Society Library, and Judge Sewall's copy is in the Library of Harvard College. None of the great private collections of American books in this country is, we believe, without a copy of Purchas' conglomerate work.

A book of great beauty was the Probasco copy of Hamilton's "Memoires du Comte de Grammont," London (1793), vellum printed, the portraits being proofs before letter on satin, in a handsome binding (green morocco), by Staggemeier. Lowndes, who apparently describes this very copy, makes the error of stating that the portraits were colored. In 1796, he says, Edwards wanted £50 for this copy, which during the one hundred and three years that have since elapsed has done its share of wandering. Last week the sum of $230 was paid for it. No other copy on vellum seems to be known.

Hakluyt's "Voyages," edition of 1599-1600, in three volumes, red morocco, by Jenkins and Cecil, title-pages mended and that to Vol. III. backed, sold for $75 at the Probasco sale. The first volume contained the rare "Voyage to Cadiz," which does not belong in this edition, having been suppressed after the volume dated 1598 was issued, the reprinted 1599 title-page not mentioning it. Needless to say, the seldom seen map of Emeric Mollineaux was not in this copy, which does not compare favorably with others sold in late years.

Many fine art and illustrated books were to be found in the Probasco collection, and all were in the very best condition. Remarkably fine were the copies of Montfaucon's "L'Antiquite," 1719, five volumes in ten, with the "Supplement," 1724, five volumes, and "Les Monumens de la Monarchie Francoise," 1729-33, selling for $165. Gould's "Trochlidiae, or Family of Humming Birds," 1861, brought $225; Shaw's "Dresses and Decorations of the Middle Ages," 1843, one of twelve copies on large paper, $50; "L'Imitation de Jesus Christ," one of 103 copies published for the Paris Exposition in 1855 and beautifully bound by Cape in red morocco (the copy once owned by M. le Comte de Saint Georges), $117; Roberts' "Holy Land," 1642-49, $132; the Halliwell Shakespeare, 1853-65, No. 56 of the 150 printed, $176; Boydell's "Collections of Prints illustrating the Dramatic Works of Shakespeare," 1803, two volumes bound

in one, $60; Corneille's "Euvres," 1854, on Holland paper, with two sets of the plates, $69; Jones' "Alhambra," 1842, $48; Walpole's "Anecdotes of Paintings," 1828, the Yemeniz copy, $51.25, and Crowe and Cavalcaselle's "History of Painting in Italy," 1864-72, $91.50.

A Horn Book, one sheet mounted on a wooden tablet and containing the alphabet, the vowels, the Lord's Prayer, etc., sold low at $147, Walton's Polyglot edition of the Bible, London, 1657, six volumes, with the "Lexicon," 1669, two volumes, brought $98, and Touson's edition of Cæsar, London, 1712, went for $50, The latter, which Lowndes considered the "most sumptuous" classical work England has produced, was at one time highly regarded by collectors. The Probasco copy contained the forty-second plate, representing a bull, which is often lacking.

Whittier, who did not write for the mere glory of writing, but used his gift in the manner he thought was best, frequently withheld his name from what he had written. This reticence is especially annoying to bibliographers, who do not always understand the feelings of writers who hide their authorship of certain books, and it is the despair of collectors who fancy the collections of their works are complete and then discover that a previously unknown publication has turned up. The discovery of Whittier's "Narrative of James Williams" caused the revision of several bibliographies, and now it has been found that the modest poet wrote a history of Haverhill, Mass., which was published in 1832 as the work of an imaginary "B. L. Mirick," and a copy sold on January 19 in Boston fetched $32.

On March 27th, 1830, Whittier advertised in the Haverhill Gazette that he proposed publishing a history of Haverhill, Mass., the price to be 87% cents if the number of pages did not exceed 200, but $1 if over 200. On the editorial page of the same issue he asked the countenance of his friends and neighbors in his undertaking and, in addition, said: "Our present situation affords us an ample opportunity for a thorough examination of the town records, and for obtaining such information connected with the early history of the town as may be necessary for the accomplishment of our design." Though he signed the advertisement in 1830, he did not give his name as author of "The History of Haverhill, Mass.," which A. W. Thayer published in 1832 in Haverhill, but used the pen name of "B. L. Mirick" instead. The "History," which is a duodecimo, contains 227 pages (Sabin says 277 in his "Dictionary"), and was issued in boards, with a folding plate. Collectors and dealers have always known the book as one of the rarest of town histories, though they have never suspected Whittier's authorship. Brinley's copy, boards, sold for $3 in 1879, Guild's, boards, for $8

in 1887, Coburn's, half morocco, for $5.75 in 1888, and Bartlett's boards, for $5.25 in 1895. The copy sold last week was in the original boards.

At the same sale Swift's "Gulliver's Travels," London, 1726, first edition, morocco, by Riviere, sold for $42, the Rusch Bible, 1478-80, four volumes, for $76, Thackeray's "Vanity Fair," first edition and with the Lord Steyne portrait, but bound in calf, for $16, the Aldine Ovid, 1502-3, for $22.50, and Latimer's "Sermons," 1546-48, outer portion of first title page restored, for $12. The Kelmscott Press books sold fetched these prices: "The Wood Beyond the World," 1894, $17, "Syr Percyvelle of Gales," 1895, $15.50, Herrick's "Poems," 1895, $15, and "Child Christopher and Goldilind the Fair," 1895, $15, and "Laudes Beatæ Mariæ Virginis," 1896, the first book printed in three colors, $16.50.

On January 12 there was sold a copy of Keith's "Notes of the True Church with the Application of them to the Church of England and the Great Sin of Separation from Her," which Bradford had printed in New York in 1704. This was but a fair copy of a rare Bradford imprint, the title-page and a few margins being repaired, and it sold for $50. The same copy had brought $76 on November 22, 1897, in the same auction room.

Mitchell's "Picture of New York," 1828, fetched $19 on January 13, $2 less than the last copy sold had brought (Feb. 21, 1898, $21). The "Acts" of New Jersey from 1702 to 1776 sold for $15, the "Votes and Proceedings of the Assembly of New York from 1777 to 1778," for $19, and "An Account. at the Conflagration of the Principal Part of the First Ward of the City of New York," 1835, for $23.50. The price paid for the latter, a little paper pamphlet once thought of slight value, is significant as showing the interest taken by collectors in early New York matter.-Literature.


Is it necessary to say, by way of preface, that the little treatises which in French are called Civilites, correspond to our manuals of Polite Society, of Correct Conversation, of Behaviour, and so forth? The English opuscule is lightly esteemed by superior reviewers (perhaps the French one of the present day is not thought much of by reviewers on the Temps and the Debats), but the next and succeeding centuries will divert themselves over it, and the first historian who can be induced to take a proper view of his functions will find it a useful sidelight upon social history. The best, the most entertaining, and the most informing parts of the historian's business continue to be done for him by the humble writer of mono

graphs on subjects which are neglected or glozed in the text-books as in the tomes. Still, one has the satisfaction of observing that, whereas history" is little read by the general, the vogue of the monograph increases.

The old Civilites-those of the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries (there are earlier ones, of course; and the Romaunt of the Rose is, in very many parts, a Civilite of the fourteenth century) are becoming rare; but they are not impossible as "finds," and cheap finds, on the bookstalls of the Paris Quays, and now and again a Civilite crops up in the catalogue of a French dealer. Of the two that are before me, one is dated 1695 and the other 1782. They are both occupied with the civilities of the table, and one may see in them, with no great trouble of reading between the lines, precisely how Paris dined in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. There are differences between the two treatises, but they are not important; and the sage who writes only seven years before the Revolution is still hammering away at the same points of etiquette which engaged his predecessor. At the very close of the eighteenth century it is still necessary to remind your host that he should not chastise his servants at table, and the guest that if he swallows his wine too rapidly he may choke himself, "which is impolite and inconvenient."

In the eighteenth century (and within eighteen years of the nineteenth) you sit down to table with your hat on-removing it only if your health is toasted by "a person of quality," or if you are constrained to rise before the meal is over-and every Civilite enjoins upon you to go to dinner with your hands clean. Apparently there is only one towel, for the Civilite requests that "a dry corner be left for the person who is to use it afterwards." Grace being said, and the guests tabled, there is a whole code for the employment of the napkin. It is to be unfolded in a leisurely way, and not as if the guests were in a hurry to pounce upon the viands. It is to be spread over the knees, and carried up to the chin. You may wipe your knife and spoon on it after every course, but the napkin is not to be used as a pocket-handkerchief, nor as a toothpick. It is equally an unpoliteness to wipe your face or to scour your plate with it.

The first dish being served, it is recommended to the guest "not to gaze at it as if he wished it all for himself," not to thrust out his plate "as if it were impossible for him to await his turn in decency," and "on no account to smack his lips." The first dish is a potage, in which there are probably some solids floating. If one of these burns your mouth badly, "make as little fuss over it as possible," remove it quietly, with your napkin over your mouth, and "pass it quickly behind

TWO QUAINT BOOKS ON 17TH AND your back" to the waiter. "Politeness requires that these things be done politely, but you are not expected to commit suicide" (mais elle ne pretend pas que l'on soit homicide de soymeme).

With the arrival of the solids on the table, the rules for the polite diner-out need a little explanation, for at first sight they seem to be addressed to a dinner-party of savages. What, for instance, should one make of the following: "Nothing is more improper than for the guest to lick his fingers, or to wipe them on the tablecloth or the bread." This to the raffine who sups habitually with royalty! But the truth and the explanation are that until the seventeenth century was well advanced everybody in France ate with his fingers. It was so at the "magnificent" Court of Francis I, at the Courts of Henri II and Louis XIV, the glass of regal fashion, thrust his hand into the platter like the trooper feeding in camp. Touching this matter, there was but one point of difference between the tables of the great and those of the unlearned; at the former, you advanced three fingers delicately to the dish, and took a morsel quickly at hazard; at the latter, you went a-hunting in the dish till you had made a prize of your favorite piece. Observe that the fork was not unknown in mediæval France, but in those days it was rather admired as a work of art than polished for the uses of the dinner-table. The dandies and mignons of the depraved Court of Henri III were the first to use it in the modern style, and there is private mention of a proposal to poison the King by means of a hollow fork, from the prongs of which the liquid should trickle into his plate. But the innovation was "tres mal recue," and the moralists proclaimed it indecent. From the seventeenth century, nevertheless, the advance of the fork (which the savage finds in the pronged twig, as he finds the bowl in the gourd and the plate in the broad leaf and the shell) may be dated; but the old habit clings, and the Civilite of 1695 is still admonishing the guest that he must not lick his fingers or wipe them on the bread, and the Civilite of 1782 is still dinning into the ears of the elegant that "viands are served with the fork and not with the hand." There are similar injunctions or prohibitions as to the licking of the spoon, and these again are echoes from the era when each guest dipped his private spoon into the tureen, and when, in consequence, it was recommended not to lick that instrument before plunging it in a second time. The brilliant notion of the ladle is due to a certain Duc de Montausier, and that reformer was set down as a person who sought too much refinement at the board.

Other rules as to eating, with which the Civilites bristle, surprise us at this day by their seeming naivete. "Avoid putting a second morsel into the mouth before the first is swallowed. It is im


proper to make two mouthfuls of one spoonful. Persons of good breeding never swallow without masticating. If the plate before you is not quite clean, do not scrape it with your fingers; ask for another. It is impossible to admire the guest who regards his neighbors with a sidelong glance to see if their plates are better filled than his. Do not try to eat soup with a fork. The plate should not be scraped with the spoon or fork as if the guest expected never to dine again. Make as little noise as possible in swallowing. Do not pile up your plate till it will hold no more. Do not on any account clutch your plate with your left hand, as if you feared that some one would snatch it from you. Meat should not be dipped in the salt-cellar or the mustard-pot; take a little salt and mustard on your plate. No one of good breeding beats a bone on the table, or shakes it, to extract the marrow; it is better to leave the marrow alone."


It would seem to have been no less necessary to instruct the guest as to what he should and should not say at the table on the subject of the viands that were served to him. Guard against a toocandid criticism, is the perennial counsel of the sage. If, on the other hand, the host seeks your voice as to the dish that is before you, "you will then reply cheerfully and politely and as advantageously as possible." tageously as possible." But "there is no occasion to launch out in complaints, as, that the dish contains too much pepper or too much salt, or is too hot or too cold, or not properly served. Such discourses are liable to give pain to the host, who is usually not to blame, and who has perhaps not noticed that anything is wrong with the dish." An opposite fault which the Civilite is at pains to correct is the breaking out into extravagant praise of every dish that is placed on the table. The person who does this will always be set down as too much sujet a son ventre."

For wine and drinking, there is another set of prescripts. In the Civilites of the seventeenth century you will generally read that it is proper and preferable to take off your glass at a draught. This counsel glances at the epoch when one glass served the whole table, in which circumstances it was not polite to leave a heel-tap for your neighbour. Up to the middle of the sixteenth century, and even in good company, the host and his guests had rarely more than a single glass between them, and when a lady drank it was customary for an attendant to stand at either side of her, holding a napkin under her chin. In the early seventeenth century it was only at the tables of the wealthy that every guest had his glass, and at this date the glasses were not placed on the table, as with us, but ranged on a sideboard, so that you must call for drink at your need. The glass found its place at the guest's right hand not

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