A clutch of interesting historical manuscripts and documents dating from the 17th to 20th centuries attracted strong bidding when they came under the hammer in Tennants Auctioneers’ Books, Maps and Manuscripts Sale on 28th April. These were led by a superb 18th century manuscript account of a Grand Tour through Europe written by Lady Mary Broughton of Broughton Hall, Staffordshire that sold for £4,800 (all figures exclude buyer’s premium). Not only is it a remarkable and detailed travel diary written from a rare female perspective, but it is an important document recording the everyday social history of Europe and a treasure trove of information on picture collections and museums of the era.
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Historic Manuscripts Lead Book Sale
Also of great interest was a manuscript account book dating from the 17th – 19th centuries with a connection to Crosthwaite in the Lake District (sold for £4,800). As well as accounts relating to hedges and ditches of an ‘Estate in Great Crosthwaite’, family history and land transactions, there were the accounts of Thomas Stevenson, a 17th century Leith Merchant predominantly making payments to a London draper and a collection of recipes for remedies for the likes of whooping cough and consumption. Further lots included a collection of Tracts relating to Westmorland from the 19th and early 20th century (sold for £4,200), and an archive of material that interwove the life of Anne Parsons, Countess Rosse (the mother of Tony Armstrong-Jones, Lord Snowdon), with Womersley Hall and the Parsons and Gladstone families (sold for £1,700). The lot included Womersley Hall and Park visitors’ books and game record, and a scrapbook compiled by Margaret Gladstone.
Amongst the children’s literature in the sale were a set of first editions of The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (sold for £9,500), a first edition of ‘The Twits’ by Roald Dahl (sold for £1,500), and a first edition set of The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (sold for £1,000). Elsewhere in the sale, ‘The History and Description of the Great Western Railway…’ written in 1846 by John C. Bourne sold for £2,500, and well-preserved late 17th century impression of John Speed’s ‘A New and Accurate Map of The World…’ sold for £5,500. The map was drawn by Speed in 1651 and comprises a decorative double-hemisphere world map with astrological and astronomical diagrams, the figures of Earth, Air, Fire and Water and portraits of explorers.
The sale saw a strong 95% sold rate for the 100 lots.
13th December 2023, 10:30
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