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Boycott these

Sada Kaiseki. 冨国歩ミ初メ [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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Specimen Hikifuda. 萬領乾物砂糖石油? [Yorozu to Kanbutsu Sato Sekiyu ...] n.p. [c1900?]. Colour woodcut 26x38cm. Rumpled with a couple of small repairs to the edges; quite decent. Stab holes in the right margin showing it was once in an album. Au$200

A bustling handsome print produced for merchants of imported goods. Exactly the opposite of the print above.
These hikifuda - small posters or handbills - were usually produced by publisher's with the text panel blank. The customer had their own details over printed. In some cases, like this, samples were were produced with generic text to show the finished product.


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FORD, Will. The Light of Mars. An Extraordinary Communication. Sydney, printed by the Co-operative Printing Works 1907. Octavo publisher's illustrated red boards; [64]pp in two sections, the first numbered to 52, the second erratically numbered but complete, portrait of the author and two small illustrations, two full page illustrations in the second section. Last page pasted down to the inside of the back cover. Signs of use but pretty good for this flimsy producion. Au$450

Is this the deluxe edition? The two libraries I found with copies - the Mitchell and the NLA - are both definite that their copies have 52 pages and don't mention the second section, Electricity the Health Giver. The price on the front cover here has been changed - one shilling is on a pasted slip. I don't know whether having the last page pasted to the inside cover was careless production, it has that look.
This does get a mention in various surveys of Australian science fiction but was missed by Stone's bibliography.
You might think this is all mere irreligious quackery but Ford's interview with a Martian is an example of Australian no-nonsense-get-busy-and-solve-the-problem gumption at the same time that Percival Lowell and his colleagues were hunched over blurry images, recognising canals and speculating about life on Mars. Our Martian puts the astronomers straight.
Despite appearances Ford's booklet is not a sales pitch for electrical devices. Ford attacks Christianity, nationalism, class, capitalism, and racial inequality - or rather his Martian friend points out the destructive foolishness of such concepts. Socialism is a small but significant step to be taken on the path to true understanding of Nature's laws.
Lightly pencilled next to Ford's name on the title is the name Paul Farris or Ferris - his real name? A Paul Ferris published a couple of pamphlets on palmistry in Sydney in the 1880s and a William Ford published a guide to personal magnetism and will power sometime towards 1900. If they are the same person - it seems likely - it shows a logical advance in ambition. From reading palms to a complete new system of belief.


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Racism. After Life's Fitful Dream. n.p. [Sydney, Yewen Publishing Co?] c1903. Printed photo postcard. Used, with message on the front and addressed on the back. Marked. Au$125

A bit of heedless insult is made breathtaking by Maisie choosing to scrawl her 1903 Xmas and New Year Wishes around this funeral image. Could there be a better marriage of insult and injury? I don't believe Maisie is one bit sardonic.
The A.A.A. All About Australians postcards must have been issued in conjunction with the magazine of the same name run by reformed socialist and journalist Alfred Yewen. As far as I can figure out Series A was mostly birds and animals and Series B Aboriginals but too few examples can be traced to be sure.
Of the handful located by Trove, four are also addressed to Miss Roberta Brown of Middle Brighton, Victoria. Most odd is they aren't from Maisie. I can't find another copy of this card.


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Blackbirding. Further Correspondence Respecting the Deportation of South Sea Islanders. London, House of Commons 1871. Foolscap, modern quarter calf; vi,212pp. Au$375

A compendium of outrage, murder, slavery and kidnapping according to the index. Bully Hayes is arrested for kidnapping on page 141 and escaped by p.143.


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Scholarly elitism and reactionary bourgeois idealism

Li Jie. 営造法式 [Yingzao Fashi or Ying Tsao Fa Shi]. [Shanghai, Commercial Press] 1954. Four volumes octavo, publisher's colour printed wrappers; hundreds of illustrations in volumes three and four, a few folding, some with the annotations printed in red. Some browning; the corner of the first volume bumped; quite a good set. Au$500

A reprint of the 1933 edition which apparently came in two formats, small and large, and is in turn, I think, pretty much a reprint with some revisions of the 1925 edition - the best edition of all.
The Yingzao Fashi is the 12th century building standards - the earliest and most extensive exemplar of classical Chinese architecture. It is interesting to plot the modern publishing history of the Yingzao Fashi alongside the career of Liang Sicheng, the first and foremost of the scholars of the Yingzao Fashi.
The earliest modern edition - 1919 - was taken from a manuscript that was criticised as hopelessly corrupted, which led to the exquisite 1925 edition. Liang Sicheng was given a copy by his father while in America studying architecture. It was reprinted in 1933, at the time that Liang Sicheng and his colleagues were making known their first essays at deciphering the work.
Next, after the war and liberation comes this third, modest, working or proletariat edition - just at the time when accusations of scholarly elitism and reactionary bourgeois idealism were laid against Liang Sicheng and historicism. Though denounced by others, and himself in 1955, he continued his studies until the cultural revolution put an end to him and his work. From 1966 until his death in 1972 he had a miserable existence. Only at the end of the cultural revolution, almost thirty years after this edition, were Liang Sicheng and the Yingzao Fashi revived - his collected writings began to appear and studies of the Yingzao Fashi blossomed.


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TAYLOR, George A. "There!" A Pilgrimage of Pleasure. Sydney, Building Ltd 1916. Large octavo (later?) cloth; [8],17-436pp (but complete), some 306 photo ills (two colour plates). This has the colour plate, not in all copies, with the three lurid views of the Salt Lake City Hotel Utah and Mormon Temple that was printed in the Hotel Utah Print-Shop. Inscribed and signed by Taylor, Xmas 1916. Au$375

Taylor must have been a pain to know - he was tireless, pushy, ebullient, self-confident, verbose, endlessly curious, opinionated - and he is a pain to read - this is written almost as a parable. But he is an essential figure, ever present in any discussion of technology, progress, architecture, urban or social planning in the first quarter of the century.
This is the architectural tour of America, made in 1914, soon after he helped found the Town Planning Association and while he was mired as much as he could be in the problems of Canberra. This tour inspired and fed many of the pre-occupations of the next decade and what is here recurs in his own work and that of his Australian contemporaries.
In Chicago he met Sullivan and Wright and though Wright was the more generous with gifts (another story, not in this book) his sympathies were with Sullivan. Wright he saw as something of a mountebank lacking the "strength of personal character needed to give stability to his work". Quite a bit of Wright's work is illustrated but not as examples of good architecture. He would have regretted his generosity had he read this.
Apart from this the book is one of the period's most detailed investigations of American architecture and urban planning by an outsider. Worldcat finds only two copies and a microfilm in US libraries. I can't find copies in the expected architectural libraries elsewhere in the world.


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Office Buildings [cover title]. A compilation of plates from the American Architect & Building News and some from the Architectural Review. n.p. [Boston 1885-1901]. Folio (34x24cm) contemporary half morocco (scuffed, front hinge cracking but solid enough); 146 plates mounted on stubs, some double page, a couple colour. Au$2250

A marvellous collection of high class plates from high class journals of new and planned buildings at the time America was busy inventing the modern city. The first plate is an 1899 elevation of the Boston Woman's Club designed by pioneer woman architect Josephine Wright Chapman in collaboration with her former boss, Charles Blackall. This was never built but the Worcester Woman's Club designed a couple of years later by Chapman is a truncated, refined version.
I'm near convinced this is a publisher's or bookseller's compilation, particularly since these are Boston plates in a Boston binding by Holzer. These plates were never disinterred from some pile of magazines. Plates could be bought singly or by subject from good journals, and publishers and proper booksellers offered compilations to order. What is special here is the office. I've never seen another like this and a run through the illustration lists of the journals through this period show that office buildings - despite transforming cities - were under represented compared with things like churches and country houses.


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Town Planning. Sydney. Planning Scheme for the County of Cumberland New South Wales. The Report ... Cumberland County Council, Sydney 1948. Small folio original cloth, front titled in gilt (a bit used, somewhat loose in the boards - which is usual, the hinges were flimsy); xxii,226,[6]pp, photo illustrations, diagrams and colour maps, two maps* in pocket. Part IV (pp199-223) stamped "Superseded" and the new section is in the back pocket.
*Without the map of proposed roads and railways.
Signed by nine of the ten council members on the half title. This was Sidney Luker's copy - the Chief County Planner - a reliable pencil note states this. Au$300

This is the only great scheme for Sydney that was ever implemented to any extent and so is essential to any understanding of the place but it is probably the least known of such documents. To all but the keenest students the Cumberland Plan is known by Winston's explanatory book published a decade after this.
It was a self confessed 'Limited Edition' and this copy is numbered 190 by hand on the front fly. I don't know how many copies were produced; I suspect 190 is getting close to the end. Other copies seen had the number stamped. This the third variant I've seen. Copy number 30 was in morocco and signed by the council members at the end; Part IV was untouched. Copy number 50 was in printed boards, unsigned; Part IV was stamped 'Superseded' but no new version supplied. Other copies seen have been in printed boards. These usually fell apart quick.


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Photo album of life on a station somewhere in northern South Australia. n.p. c1930? Commercial Australian Kodak photo album 19x31cm; 12 leaves each with four windows 5x10cm, 48 silver gelatine prints. Covers a bit dishevelled but solid. Au$600

From where I sit, a forbidding, gaunt rendering of outback life that makes your harshest Drysdale painting seem lush.
Unidentified but, from the landscape and the stone buildings, somewhere in upper South Australia where the sheep outnumber the grass and people outnumber the trees.
At the end are photos of what looks like a holiday jaunt down to the Murray River.


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Aviation game. The Sir Ross Smith Aeroplane Race Game. n.p. [Sydney printed by Fuerth & Nall, 1920?] Colour lithograph board game 35x46cm; title label on the other side chipped, game paper split down the hinge but the cloth firm; used but decent enough. sold

This might have been out in time for Christmas 1919 but as the Smiths did not arrive in Australia until the 10th of December it's likely it appeared the next year.


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Hattori Yoshio. 新案飛行雙六 [Shin'an Hiko Sugoroku]. Tokyo, Jiji Shinposha 1912 (Meiji 45). Colour broadside 55x40cm. A bit browned, minor signs of use. Au$600

A captivating aviation game with a touch of violence and disaster, what could be better?


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Kobayashi Eijiro. 大正少年双六 [Taisho Shonen Sugoroku]. Tokyo, Shonen Sekai 1915 (Taisho 4). Colour broadside 54x79cm. A touch browned and minor signs of use; pretty good. Au$250

A gift from the boys' magazine Shonen Sekai and, as always with boys' sugoroku, packed with excitement and adventure. Girls sometimes get to watch in awe.


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Hayashi Taidichi. 少年未来双六 [Shonen Mirai Sugoroku]. Tokyo, Nihon Shonen 1927 (Taisho 16). Colour broadside 54x79cm. Minor signs of use, pretty good. Au$450

This is a future to look forward to. Mostly. The gas warfare is not so inviting but at least the horses get protective suits. This was the new year gift from the magazine Nihon Shonen - Japanese Boy.
Hayashi redesigned Tokyo after the earthquake and fire - in 1924's new year sugoroku - to be a wonderful utopia for boys of all ages.
Mostly there is no Taisho 16 but this was produced the year before, before the change in emperors.


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Kobayashi Eijiro. 滑稽乗物競争双六 [Kokkei Norimono Sugoroku] Tokyo, Shonen - Shojo Tankai 1925 (Taisho 14). Colour broadside 54x78cm. Small holes in a couple of folds. Au$300

A vivid fun race through all the kinds of transport there are, from monkey's tail or airship to chauffeur driven motorcar. This seems to have been a bilateral new year gift to the readers of the boys' and the girls' Tankai - magazines that ran for decades from 1920 with a name change to Science and Defence during the war years.


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NEWCOMB, Josiah Turner. A Fight for a Throne. NY, Tennyson Neely [1898]. Octavo publisher's red cloth blocked in white and black (spine a bit darkened and rubbed). Inscribed and signed by Newcomb in December 1898. Au$400

Only edition of this scarce Pacific thriller; part lost race and part Ruritanian romance in which the exiled king and his glorious daughter must be restored to their south seas kingdom and our hero must atone for his father's crime. We won't question how the hero came across the heroine by chance on a remote Long Island beach just before his father drops dead leaving his confession of the crime that killed the queen and sent the king and baby daughter into exile in New York. Like the actual result of the self-immolating - presumably sardonic - remark of Holmes, once we have eliminated the impossible there is nothing left.
Newcomb was a New York newspaper editor at the time he wrote this, later he turned lawyer and politician; this seems to be his only book.


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JUNOR, Charles. Richard Brice, Adventurer. London, Everett 1902. Octavo publisher's decorated cloth blocked in gilt and maroon. Small, very small, hole in the spine; a bit of foxing; quite good. Au$1450

First edition of Junor's other book and rare; missed by Miller and Macartney and by Loder. Not the first appearance, a version was serialised with the title 'A Ruby from the Sea' in The Murrurundi Times and Liverpool Plains Gazette from March to November 1901. Junor's first book was, of course, 'Dead Mens' Tales' of 1898 and as he fell off a Sydney ferry and drowned while this was in the press there were no more.
Junor has aimed at an international market while keeping one foot in the home camp. The hero and narrator is Australian born but brought up in Argentina. Finding himself on the run after a misjudged coup d'etat he decides to head for London and then on to Australia. Manila is as close as he gets and long before he gets that far he has been through a multitude of perilous scrapes, subterfuges and double crosses. There is a possibility that some autobiography went into this. Maybe not the bloodshed and Spanish American war in the Philippines but many of the locations, from Argentina onwards.
Information on Junor is scant, here's what I've gleaned. According to the inquest report Junor was a South American born 37 year old journalist of North Sydney, and married - his "young and pretty" widow Minnie remarried in 1904. When he came to Australia is still mirky but his name begins to appear in Melbourne newspapers around 1890. Two pamphlets published in London in 1885 by the freethinking, and sometimes blasphemous, Progressive Publishing Co were authored by a Charles Junor. He would have been very young then but it is possible that this is our Junor; particularly since both pamphlets are in the SLNSW while only one can be traced in OCLC or Copac.
Junor was a Melbourne scribbler for newspapers until the late 1890s when he migrated to Sydney. He had occasional 'Comments of a Melbournian' published in provincial Victorian papers and stories that went into his 'Dead Mens' Tales' appeared in papers scattered all over the place. His most successful writing, in terms of exposure, were two testimonials he wrote for Clements Tonic. He had two other jobs: assistant to a politician in Melbourne and assistant secretary to the AAAS at Sydney University.
I suspect that reports of the inquest into his death are purposely close mouthed and coded - maybe loyalty to a fellow journalist but no mortal brain can ever comprehend why and what journalists choose to report or omit. Given he was on a late Saturday night ferry to Milsons Point, was woken on arrival by a friend, stepped over the ferry rail and went into the water I'd guess he was drunk. Or given that his employer testified he was noticeably absent minded perhaps we could say he was absent minded as a newt.
A search of all the likely catalogues finds copies in the four English deposit libraries, one belonging to the Mormons in Utah, and one recently added to the NLA.


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FRITH, Walter. The Sack of Monte Carlo. An adventure of today. Bristol, Arrowsmith; London, Simpkin Marshall 1897. Octavo publisher's maroon cloth blocked in gilt and red. The spine appears to have been retouched but still a rather good copy. Arrowsmith's 3/6 Series, no. XXIX. Au$285

First edition. Is this the first caper novel? The modern caper novel - parent to the caper film - I mean, forget Robin Hood and suchlike. Our young English gentleman narrator tells us how he, stymied in love for the while and unhappy and restless, comes up with the idea of looting the casino at Monte Carlo and sets out to enlist some chums - first among his sister's friends for some inexplicable reason, then among his own old school friends and members of his club - and rustle up a fast steam yacht for their getaway. His sister does sign up for the job.
Gentleman, and lady, burglars were thick on the ground within a few years, they must have been elbowing each other in Mayfair salons, country house ballrooms and the gaming rooms of Monte Carlo but I can't think of an earlier book having such fun with the planning, execution and scrapes of the big score.


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[DE MILLE, James]. A Strange Manuscript Found in a Copper Cylinder. NY, Harper 1888. Octavo publisher's illustrated cloth blocked in gilt, silver and brown; 19 full page illustrations by Gilbert Gaul. Some slight signs of use; a rather good copy. Au$450

First edition, English and Canadian editions appeared in the same year. One of the must-have Antarctic lost race thrillers, it has excited recent critical attention - something that it did not do on publication - largely due to De Mille's unique status as a Canadian author of such a fantastic novel at that time. Published well after his death in 1880, there is evidence that he wrote it in the 1860s. This excuses him from accusations of plagiarism of recent books . But there is little point in ransacking the sensational fiction of the 19th century for likenesses; the forms were well set out in the imaginary voyages of a century or two earlier.
De Mille's Antarctic society is a dystopia, an inversion of 19th century Christian society, but the book is a true thriller, with wondrous creatures, beauteous women and gruesome death. You can swap those adjectives around to suit yourself.
De Mille himself was a respectable academic who scribbled potboiling trash by the ton - all but this novel pretty well forgotten. It is suggested that he had to pay off the debt accrued through a youthful plunge into bookselling.


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BOUVE, Edward T. Centuries Apart. Boston, Little Brown 1894. Octavo publisher's gilt decorated blue cloth; x,347pp, two maps and six plates. Minor signs of use but quite a good copy. Au$175

First edition. An Antarctic lost race, this time of comparatively recent origin - Tudor England. Toward the end of the 19th century Antarctica was one of the busiest spots on earth, what with lost races tucked in every crevice and lost mariners crawling all over the place. They must have bumped into each other but - like real explorers in central Asia studiously ignoring each other's pack train quartered down the other end of whatever remote village, pretending they each were the only white men for thousands of miles - discretion was the better part of a thrilling narrative and silence was the tacit rule.


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COLVILLE, W.J. [William Juvenal]. The Throne of Eden. A psychical romance. Boston, Banner of Light 1902. Octavo publisher's cloth. A very good copy. Au$165

First edition, it was reprinted or re-issued the next year and an extract called Miss Catte's Impressions of Australia appeared separately in 1903. Colville, American spiritualist, wrote most of this in Sydney in 1901. He describes Australasia as "veritable hot-bed of Spiritualism and Occultism" and the book opens in Sydney with our introduction to Miss Cynthia Catte and Miss Julia Panther.
After a preface peppered with Psycho-Therapeutics, Spirit Communion, Etiopathy, heirophants, hypnotism, magnetism, Initiates and Anastasian Occults, I was tired and left Miss Panther on the Watsons Bay ferry on page six.


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電車ト乗物. Densha to Norimono. Osaka, Fujiya 1930 (Showa 5). 19x26cm colour illustrated wrapper; 12pp including wrapper; full page colour illustrations on each. The last page has cartoon gags. Minor signs of use, an almost splendid copy. Au$300

Once inside the hero of this book is the tram - or streetcar if you prefer. There is a page of ships, a train, lots of cars, barges in the river, but trams throng the streets.


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China. A photograph album of scenes and people in the area around Liangxi. n.p. [c1920?]. Cloth back album 23x15cm; eight card leaves each with four windows, 7.5x10cm; 30 loosely inserted photos, most identified in pencil on the mount. Four photos quite faded. Au$275

Possibly someone associated with a hospital in Liangxi district - west of Shanghai. Allowing for changes in orthography, this seems to be where our photographer was and a couple of photos are portraits of patients. Some photos are "near Soochow" - now Suzhou.

 


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Prisons - Tasmania. Correspondence on the Subject of Convict Discipline and Transportation ... presented to both houses of Parliament ... May 1848. London, William Cowes 1848. Foolscap publisher's printed wrapper (spine chipped); 144pp and seven folding plans (six with added colouring). A very good copy. Au$450

Much of this is, naturally, concerned with the concerted push by the colonies to end transportation which, in concert with a fair amount of practical detail about the state of the system and planned reforms and reductions, is not without interest. Added are items like the specifications for a new female penitentiary.
The real appeal here, though, is the detailed report on the Prisoners' Barracks at Hobart and plans for improvements by its superintendent James Boyd. Described and illustrated in plan and section are the present, and the proposed and improved cells and 'dormitories'; the appalling cells underneath the chapel; and the tread-wheel. The tread-wheel, punishment for refractory prisoners, was some 50 feet long in a room 68 feet long. Up to 150 prisoners at a time were in this room, "totally inadequate" as Boyd said. Of greater concern was that there was no separation of prisoners either on or off the wheel ("distressing evils") and Boyd proposes (illustrated in three of the plans) dividing the whole - the wheel and the room - into series of stalls and boxes, isolating the prisoners on and off the wheel.
This is less stable-like than you may think, the meanest stable is airy and commodious in comparison. The wheel seems to have been introduced into British prisons in the 1820s and lasted well into the 20th century despite the agitations of reformers throughout that whole time. Photographs of prison wheels at the end of the century show prisoners in stalls so, while I can't claim that Boyd originated the idea, there is no doubt that such plans were put into being throughout the prison system.


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Hikifuda. 信州松本東町上丁 [Shinshu Matsumoto Higashimachi Uetei]. n.p. [c1900?]. Woodcut broadside 28x24cm. A nice copy. Au$100

An intriguing and to me mysterious handbill from Matsumoto - a city in the Nagano prefecture in central Honshu. It seems clear it offers - in some rustic, or perhaps reverse way - what the well dressed man needs but I'm stumped by all those series of numbers. They don't make sense as measurements to me.


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Atom Bomb. Australian Army Journal Atomic Digest No.1. [cover title]. Military Board, Melbourne 1955. Octavo printed wrapper (a little grubby); 108pp, photos, illustrations, diagrams. Au$100

Australian Army Journal number 78, November 1955, not be communicated to the press or any other unauthorised person. A special issue containing Brogan on Tactics and Atomics, Mark Oliphant on Properties of Nuclear Explosions, Blunden on the Physical Effects of Atomic Weapons, Caplehorn on their effects on military operations, Blunden again on Simple Calculations for Tacticians in Nuclear War and Sloman and Baird on Medical Effects of Radiological Warfare.
Appended are some references and instructions for a Simulated Atomic Bomb: "Although there is no real substitute for an atomic explosion," we can make do with a 44 gallon drum of diesoleum and napalm.
Trove finds one copy - in a military collection - though doubtless there are other copies buried in runs of the journal.


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PIGGOTT, Sir Francis. Studies in the Decorative Art of Japan. London, Batsford 1910 [printed by the Box of Curios, Yokahama]. Quarto patterned cloth; 130pp & 32 plates (numbered to 33 but plate 16 does not exist; some colour), illustrations through the text. Au$100

A delightful and fairly esoteric enthusiast's study - like most of the best books - by the Chief Justice of Hong Kong; with chapters on the decoration of temples, of flat surfaces, wave and cloud forms, lattice work, the circular form, and a "special chapter" on the evolution of the key border in the east.


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Exhibition - Tokyo 1922. 平和記念東京博覧会事務報告 [Heiwa Kinen Tokyo Hakurankai Jimu Hokoku]. Tokyo Fucho 1924 (Taisho 13). Two volumes 26x19cm, publisher's embossed wrappers (browned); 681pp, heaps of illustrations: folding colour plans, architectural elevations and plans, photo plates, etc. Browning and foxing expected from the paper but still a rather good fresh copy. Au$1850

The official report on the 1922 Tokyo Memorial Peace Exposition is the very model of what an official report on an exhibition should be. You could just about rebuild the whole thing from this. The detail extends to measured drawings of light fittings, plans of the garden beds and coloured reproductions of the tickets and advertising.
The 1922 Peace Memorial Exhibition, celebrating the League of Nations and a bright future, was the most lavish national Expo ever held. The pavilions were a mix of stately, ultra modern and funfair fairy tale.
Worldcat finds no copies outside Japan, neither do searches of likely library catalogues.

*Click on the picture to see more in the gallery.


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Exhibition - Amsterdam 1883. Report of the Executive Secretary on the Amsterdam International Exhibition, 1883. Sydney, Govt Printer 1884. Foolscap modern wrapper; 53p, four photo plates and a folding colour plan. Some browning. Au$300

Amsterdam seems pretty much forgotten among the cavalcade of international exhibitions thronging the later 19th century. Even the Smithsonian collection - recorded in Books of the Fairs - has a scant gathering. This is a useful report on the fair, on everything New South Wales sent and how they fared. More than once Bonnard, who wrote the report, remarks on how carelessly some exhibitors packed their goods. These arrived unfit for display.


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Yamada Seijiro [ed]. 大江橋淀屋橋意匠設計図案集 [Oebashi Yodoyabashi Isho Sekkei Zuanshu]. Osaka, Shiyakusho Mikuraban 1924 (Taisho 13) Folio, 40x27cm, loose as issued in card portfolio with mounted label (a bit worn with some short tears); 36 leaves: a wrapper-like title, three leaves of text and 49 illustrations on 32 plates - perspectives, elevations, plans &c. Au$875

The three winning designs and five honourable mentions for the competition for a new bridge - or pair of bridges to flank the brand new Osaka city hall. That impressive pile was demolished by Godzilla in 1955 and by the city in the 1980s.
The winner, Otani Tatsuo, did design the built bridge but as is the way with competitions nothing as splendid - nor as peculiar - as these designs was built. What is there seems a drab, if dignified, patchwork of the least expressive particulars of more than one design. It took thirty years to get around to it, finished in 1954.
I can't find a copy of this anywhere outside Japan and not too many inside.


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CHAMBERLAIN, Houston Stewart. Immanuel Kant - a study and a comparison with Goethe, Leonardo da Vinci, Bruno, Plato and Descartes. London, John Lane 1914. Two volumes octavo publisher's cloth (spines faded); eight portraits. Au$90

First edition in English, translated by Lord Redesdale with Chamberlain's approval and assistance. Perhaps one of Chamberlain's more respectable works; it is usually held to exemplify the breadth of his erudition. Online research on Chamberlain brings up so many racist and neo-Nazi websites that I retired from the job feeling sick and anxious.
A small confusion with dates had me thinking that Redesdale was the father of the Mitford girls, a puzzle. Not his admiration for Chamberlain but any sign of scholarship. It isn't him, it's his father.


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Chinese in Australia. Report from the Select Committee ... on the Chinese Immigration Bill. Sydney, Govt Printer 1858. Foolscap, modern wrapper; 10,24pp. Au$500

The colony's first foray into what later became The Chinese Question. In comparison to parliamentarians of the following decades this bunch seems remarkably humane. Of couse "filthy and dirty habits"are never far away along with contagious disease. Most of this is the minutes of evidence - the testimony of ten witnesses including two Chinese residents: 'Henry Leau Appu' and 'Chin Ateak', shopkeeper and merchant respectively. The Assembly passed the restriction bill but the Council rejected it. Not, it appears, with any sympathy other than for landowners wanting cheap labour.
Now, while reading about the 1858 bill I came across this grand academic phrase: "the broader maieutic horizons of the nascent Australian colonies". Can anyone explain to me what the hell a maieutic horizon might look like?


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Chinese in Australia. Correspondence Relating to Chinese Immigration into the Australasian Colonies, with a return of acts passed by the legislatures of those colonies and of Canada and British Columbia on the subject. London, HMSO 1888. Foolscap, very good in a modern wrapper; x,87pp. Au$400

An essential Yellow Peril document gathering details of policy, procedure and personality during a particularly active, perhaps turbulent, period of antagonism and legislation. Collected here are official dispatches and unofficial enclosures, news from all parts of the world and protests from the Chinese.
Much of the proud tradition of strict quarantine in Australia has its origin in intercolonial co-operation in declaring ports of embarkation for Chinese immigrants as Infected Places. Prior to this attempts to establish a national quarantine policy had little success.


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Camel Sewing Machine Co. Ltd. Camel Sewing Machine ... Himeji Japan. n.p. [Japan c1930?]. Glazed colour lithograph 103x73cm with metal strips at top and bottom and hanging loop. A stain down the right edge and a few minor creases, a small nick in the left side; a good survival of an extra large shop poster. Au$400

It seems so obvious once you see it done - putting sewing machines and camels together - you wonder why early sewing machine manufacturers wasted their time with small birds and flowers.


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Mitsukawa Hisashi. 宇宙旅行 [Uchu Ryoku]. Tokyo, Seibundo Shinkosha 1940 (Showa 15). Octavo publisher's printed and embossed boards, printed slipcase; folding colour frontispiece and three colour plates, numerous b/w illustrations. A rather good copy of a book that didn't wear well. The design is by Hatsuyama Shigeru. Au$500

First edition. The volume on space travel is, I think, by far the best of the mostly mundane kids' series Bokura no Kagaku Bunko - a scientific library - published as the war was about to start in earnest. It's the hardest to find in decent condition, usually a good indicator of fascination.
Worldcat finds no copies outside Japan.


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Benedictine. Four fairy tales: Le Petit Chaperon Rouge; Cendrillon; Barbe Bleue; Le Chat Botte. n.p. n.d [Benedictine 190-?]. Four volumes octavo colour illustrated wrappers; each fourteen pages with six or seven colour illustrations. Each is numbered to have eight leaves but has seven - ie the last leaf does not have a conjugate at the front - but they are apparently complete. One with a tiny nibble of one corner, a few other signs of use, pretty good. Au$150

A set of advertising fairy tales properly fashioned to reflect how essential Benedictine is in the way of all things. If Cinderella's fairy godmother hadn't given her those two tiny bottles in case the feast was too rich we would never have a happy ending. Perfect lessons for every child.
I can't find a record of these anywhere.


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Sugoroku. 愛国婦人双六 [Aikoku Fujin Sugoroku]. Tokyo, Aikoku Fujinkai 1934 (Showa 9). Colour broadsheet 64x92cm. A nice copy with its original printed envelope. Au$750

A splendid large game from the patriotic women's association offering inspiration and lessons to the women of Japan as the increasingly military driven country dreamt of an expanding empire. From education to air defence, there is a place for every conscientious woman.
There are two near identical games with the same title issued in the same year - this laid out horizontally, the other vertical.


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Canberra. GRIFFIN, Walter Burley. Federal Parliament House Architectural Competition. [Melbourne], Govt Printer [1914] foolscap folio printed wrapp; [4],10pp, 6 plates of views, plans, elevations &c, folding colour plan. With the registration leaf (to be detached) intact. A bit rumpled and used, piece about an inch square torn from the bottom of the back cover; decent enough. Au$350

Conditions, specifications &c for the failed competition. The judges were to include Otto Wagner - after the outbreak of war Griffin suggested he could be replaced by Saarinen - and Louis Sullivan though it is seems clear that Griffin has all but set out the winning design here. Something between a ziggurat and a stupa. He is still working with the Preliminary Plan of his Report Explanatory without, as yet, further revisions. The department immediately set out to subvert the competition and its results, against which Griffin was still battling in May 1915. It was briefly revived in August 1916 but in November was indefinitely postponed.
It is a pity the competition failed. I do wonder how much the increasing small mindedness of our politicians over the last thirty years is due to them spending their days in a bunker. But that doesn't explain their mean spirited colleagues in other parts of the world.


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Sugoroku. 家庭教育世界一周すごろく [Katei Kyoiku Sekai Isshu Sugoroku]. Osaka Mainichi Shimbun, 1926 (Taisho 15). Colour printed broadside 109x80cm. Short tears in the margins and small holes; used but not bad for a particularly large and vulnerable sugoroku. Au$300

It took me a few moments of slackjawed wonder before I realised this is a world map turned sideways and sat on. From where in space did the artist choose their viewpoint, unpeel the globe and spread it out flat? This a self titled educational game for the family. What does it teach us about our place on the planet and relationship to each other? Maybe that all maps are fiction.
The Japanese flag flying in the Canadian Rockies marks the first ascent of Mount Alberta by the Japanese Alpine Club in 1925.


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Advertising sugoroku. かたた商賣繁昌双六 [Katata Shobai Hanjo Sugoroku]. Katata Shimbun 1936 (Showa 11) Colour broadside 54x79cm. A somewhat rumpled but decent copy. Au$200

A rare, cheerful advertising game featuring local businesses, issued as the new year gift by the newspaper Katata Shimbun. I'm not sure where the Katata Shimbun originated. I can't find a record of it. Katata is an area now in Otsu, near Kyoto but that in comes from there is a guess.


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Nakamura Keisuke. 勇ましい兵隊双六 [Isamashi Heitai Sugoroku]. Tokyo, Seugaku Ninen 1937 (Showa 12). Colour broadside 54x79cm. Minor signs of use. Au$350

This new year gift from the magazine for second grade kids is Merry Melody style cartoon romp through war. Until we get to the bottom left hand corner and there is the hospital tent and a wounded soldier who is no cartoon at all. This is a baffling and brave anti-war message in an otherwise exemplary bit of now disturbing pro-war fluff. I wonder how Nakamura got it past the boss. Maybe the message is that soldiers do get wounded, not killed, and they each get a lovely nurse.
The name Nakamura Keisuke appears on another manga sugoroku - an African adventure with Tarzan - the next year and in children's magazines and kamishibai over the next few years so this did not end his career.


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世界發明發見双六 [Sekai Hatsumei Hatsuken Sugoroku]. Tokyo, Shogaku Shinensei Furoku 1929 (Showa 4). Colour broadsheet 54x78cm. A rather good copy. Au$300

An inspirational, if odd, game celebrating great inventors. This was the new year gift from Shogaku Shinensei - a magazine for 4th graders. I'm not sure whether you get to be a god or hang out with a god, join his procession.


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Advertising Sugoroku. Sugorku issued by the Osaka Mainichi newspaper Sunday supplement Osaka, Mainichi Shimbun 1922 (Taisho 11). Broadsheet printed in brown. Several small tears in folds and edges, not bad for such a flimsy game. Au$60

A cheap game advertising local businesses printed in that grim brown that newspapers fondly imagined was more lively and attractive than black. It was part of the supplement for January 1st - far drabber than those colourful sheets produced by other papers and magazines and given as a new year gift. On the other side are typical photos of the Sunday supplement kind including puppies in the snow.


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Advertising Sugoroku. 商賣繁榮雙六 [Shobai Hanei Sugoroku]. Tokyo, Sankosha 1935 (Showa 10). Colour broadside 80x56cm, folded as issued. Minor signs of use, a pretty good copy. Au$400

Prosperity and glamour is the reward for the perfect modern girl: good husband, handsome family and shopping, shopping shopping.
This shopping game advertises the glamorous range of businesses in Notagawa - now part of Higashiomi, more or less half way between Kyoto and Nagoya. The same game, relabelled, was used for businesses of Matsumoto City. A very similar - a few panels the same - but not so modern game - more kimonos, fewer cars, furs and bobbed or marcelled heads - with the same title was issued the year before by the newspaper Tokyo Nichinichi Shinbun for readers in the Iwamurata-machi area. You don't waste a good idea and a decent bit of artwork.


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COLSON, C. Notes on Docks and Dock Construction. London, Longman 1894. Octavo publisher's cloth (marked); x,426pp & catal.; 365 illustrations, plans, diagrams (some full page, 2 folding). Scattered spotting. Au$75

First (only?) edition; one of the 'Civil Engineering Series' - always good books. This doesn't pretend to be an exhaustive treatise but notes from Colson's own observations and experiences that cover a wide range and use world wide examples.


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WHEELER, W.H. Tidal Rivers, their (1) Hydraulics (2) Improvement (3) Navigation. London, Longman 1893. Octavo publisher's cloth (marked); viii,467pp, 75 illustrations, plans (two folding). Au$65

First edition; one of the worthy Civil Engineering Series. An historical account precedes solid treatment of technical detail and principles, discussion of the requirements of navigation, buoying and lighting, surveying, the use of working tidal models (a recent innovation) and examples of river improvements around the world.


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de CHABRILLAN, Celeste. Les Voleurs d'Or. Paris, Levy 1857. Octavo contemporary cloth backed mottled boards. Expected browning and spotting, a pretty good copy. Au$1750

First edition, and rare, of this pioneer thriller of the Australian gold fields by the former prostitute, dancer and toast of Paris, now wife of the French Consul in Melbourne. Like who knows how many women writers of the 19th century, Celeste took to novels and plays, starting with this, to climb out of a poverty pit dug by a malevolent or feckless husband. In her case, her blacksheep noble husband - the comte de Chabrillan - was feckless, careless enough to die in Melbourne in 1858.


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SELBORNE, John. The Thousand Secrets. London, Everett 1911. Octavo publisher's cloth with mounted colour illustration. A bit used, a bit browned; a pretty decent copy. Au$475

First edition of this thriller which surely must be the first emoji mystery. At the scenes of the crimes the villain leaves a cryptic typed smiling face. Did he or she kill only owners of typewriters or carry spares? You might be sure the killer is a he from the cover but I'd say our cover artist never tried to make such a face with a typewriter. Truth in advertising or book covers has never been desirable.
"As is often the case in such tales, the criminals show far more intelligence than their pursuers," (The Adelaide Register).


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Medicine. Nostrums and Quackery. Articles on the nostrum evil and quackery reprinted, with additions and modifications, from the Journal of the American Medical Association. Chicago, American Medical Association 1912. Octavo publisher's cloth; 708pp, numerous illustrations. Ex parliamentary library with their gilt crest on the front board, a couple of inoffensive stamps; a rather good copy. Au$75

Second edition, less than a year later and much larger than the first, and a goldmine of fraudulent, worthless and dangerous cures and their advertising. The American Medical Association has a fiercer approach than the similar books produced by its British counterpart - pretty much following national characteristics. The British book is laconic and offers few opinions, letting the "juxtaposition of the claims made and the facts shown by analysis" speak for themselves, while in the American book "evil" appears five times in the first two paragraphs of the preface.


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