The Bard of Avon at West Coast Auction
Certainly the most widely read, most often published, and most influential writer in the annals of English literature is William Shakespeare, the Bard of Avon. His 36 plays have been translated into every major living language, and are performed more often than those of any other playwright. Though a number of his plays were published during his lifetime – he died in 1616 at age 52 – it was not until 1623 that a collected edition of his plays was published, known as the First Folio. Nine years later, another edition was called for, and in 1632 there was published the Second Folio of Mr. William Shakespeare’s Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies. It was essentially a page-for-page reprint of the First Folio, but with a very significant addition, John Milton’s “An Epitaph on the admirable Dramaticke Poet, W. Shakespeare” – the first appearance in print of any work of Milton’s. There were to be two more folio editions of Shakespeare’s Works published during the 17th century – the third folio of 1664 and the fourth folio of 1685.
PBA Galleries in San Francisco will, on February 8, 2010, place at auction an exceptional copy of the Second Folio. The “tall,” well-margined copy was rebound in full morocco in the middle of the 19th century by the firm of J. Leighton for the owner, Robert Curzon, 14th Baron Zouche, a noted traveler, scholar and collector. The gilt arms on the morocco front cover reads “What Curzon Helde, Let Curzon Holde,” and “R. Curzon, Parham” is written on the front flyleaf. There is some restoration to the title-page and final leaf, but overall a very choice copy, in eminently collectible condition. PBA Galleries estimates this monumental work will sell for between $200,000 and $300,000.
About PBA Galleries
PBA Galleries is the only specialist auction house in the West devoted to rare books, manuscripts, and maps. Focused primarily on personal collections and exceptional books, recent offerings have included the sale of maps and atlases from the Ernst W. Gerber collection; the library of Ford Mitchell: Early Americana, Texas & the West; John Dunlap’s collection from the estate of William Randolph Hearst; and many more. PBA Galleries provides clients the benefits of its staff of appraisers, online and printed catalogues, and biweekly gallery auctions where clients can bid in person, email, and in real time from their computer. We welcome you to follow the auction and bid in real time by clicking on the Real Time Bidder button at the PBA Galleries website. Bidders will have to register before the auction. Please contact at [email protected] for more information.