Miniature Book News #104: 2000 March Page: 6
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Tipogr. Salmin, 1896, measuring 20
x 12mm in a modern red morocco giltstamped
binding and printed in the
famous "fly's eye" type, sold for
An early Book of Hours, Officium
Beatae Mariae Virginis... ,Venice:
N. Pezzana, 1751, measuring 69 x 48mm.
went for b863. This OBMV is bound
in red morocco and is not recorded
in Doris Welsh's mammoth reference
book, A Bibliography of Miniature
Books, published in 1989 (although
completed in 1965).
A super-rare, perhaps unique, book
item of any size, consisting of four
18th century Austrian miniature books,
75 x 48mm., bound together back-toback
(dos-a-dos) fetched 64730. This
tour de force is entitled Officium
oder kleine Tag-Zeite von... , Landshut,
S. Solowitz, 1741, bound with three
other similar volumes with different
imprints dated 1737, 1747 and 1736;
4 works in one volume, bound in
contemporary calf, albeit with some
wear and worm damage, in a
contemporary roan pull-off box.
As you can see, we are highlighting
some of the more unusual items in
the sale, for one reason or another.
A copy of Olimpia, Ex editione
Oxoniensi, Glasgow: R. & A. Foulis,
1754, by Pindar, went for 150.
Although this copy, measuring 81 by
50 mm was worn and its front cover
detached, it is one of only a few copies
printed on silk. This Pindar is the
first volume of the Foulis four-volume
edition of 1754-58 and the only one
printed on silk leaves.
An erotica item, Ode a Priape, by
Piron, published around 1935, with
hand colored plates, bound in blue
morocco, sold for I748.
Then there were 14 lots with large
quantities (from about 80 to several
hundred volumes) amassed
together-20th century private press
books, European books, oriental, doll
house size, metal cover books, Hungarian
miniature books (this was the largest
quantity), for example. Many of these
lots went for sums substantially above
their estimates, and one would not
be surprised to see items from these
collections appear in future dealer's
Sadly, the collection of Dance
Programmes or Carnets de bal that
Irene Winterstein was most proud
of sold for L2070, below the estimates.
(Refer to MBN 29, September 1972
for an article about these curious
items.) This group of about 250 Swiss,
German, Austrian and American dance
programmes, mainly late 19th and
early 20th century vintage, ranged
from simple engraved cards to elaborate
mounted velvet and gilt carnets and
trinkets. They measure from 47 x
37 mm to 14 x 54 mm, with some
inscribed. One program is a gilt metal
locomotive, with 4 wheels and tiny
carnet attached to the front. It was
this toy-like locomotive, pictured
in the catalogue, that apparently
encouraged this entire lot to be
purchased by an up-State New York
husband and wife toy dealer. They
were not sure what they would do
with the other 249 Carnets de bal!
And lastly came 8 lots of manuscripts,
mostly medieval prayerbooks, from
several European countries, one dating
from perhaps the 13th century. These
sold for substantially above the
estimates. The most expensive was
an Italian Book of Hours of the 15th
century with eleven historiated initials
and four historiated or painted initials
and full-page borders, which went
for 643,700 (c. $70,000).
Irene Winterstein's son and other
members of her family came over
for the sale. We do not know whether
they were pleased with the results
as the tallies were not completed.
However, it was an unforgettable
The Winterstein cache is likely to
stand as the largest auction sale of
miniature books for some time.
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Edison, Julian I. Miniature Book News #104: 2000 March, periodical, 2000; St. Louis, Missouri. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9394/m1/6/: accessed September 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Rare Book and Texana Collections.