Catalogues & Lists

The Baudin Expedition

We are delighted to bring to your attention an exceptional catalogue of highly important works of art by Nicolas-Martin Petit (1777-1804) and Charles-Alexandre Lesueur (1778-1846). They are to be offered for sale at auction by Deutscher and Hackett in association with Hordern House: 28 November, 2018 in Melbourne.

The richness of these outstanding works is fully described and illustrated in the accompanying catalogue, researched and compiled by Hordern House. This remarkable collection was until quite recently unknown and unrecorded.

Of significant cultural importance, these portraits and views by the two main artists on Nicolas Baudin's monumental voyage of exploration in Australia over the years 1801 and 1802 will rewrite the history of early Australian voyage art.

Alexander Shaw

To coincide with the opening of a major exhibition on Cook and the Pacific at the National Library of Australia we have featured the wonderful artefact and rarity Alexander Shaw’s Catalogue of the Different Specimens of Cloth collected in the three voyages of Captain Cook…

Natural History

This themed list spans three hundred years of natural history: from John Gerard’s handsome 17th Century English herbal; to a great feat of 20th Century publishing, Banks' Florilegium (from the original 18th Century copper-plates). In the wake of the great 18th & 19th Century voyages of exploration and scientific discovery are landmark works by the great naturalist Baron Cuvier, his rival, Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire (doing his scholarly best to explain the peculiarities of never-seen Australian fauna), works on entolomolgy by another Cuvier-contemporary, Pierre André Latreille, and by René-Primavère Lesson the surgeon-naturalist who wrote the official account of the Duperrey voyage. There are charming works for the young and works of amazing beauty.  


Summa de Arithmetica by Luca Pacioli, is ‘The earliest printed book to treat algebra comprehensively, and the first to contain double-entry book-keeping’. Pacioli is revered as the “Father of Accounting” because of this foundation treatise. 

Spring 2018

Our second major catalogue of the year marks the 200th anniversary of Louis de Freycinet’s arrival in Western Australia. See item 21 for the wonderful Hydrographical Atlas from this voyage. This was Louis’ second visit, his first was as the cartographer-surveyor for the Baudin expedition, a fine account of which is included (see item 2), as well as the only published portrait of him (see item 18).

Before European landfall, Macrobius posits the existence of a Great South Land with his brilliant mapping of the world (see item 30). Other highlights include a rare Russian edition of the chart by Tupaia, the Tahitian priest and remarkable member of Cook’s Endeavour voyage; a presentation copy of Remy’s important Hawaiian history; a beautiful copy of Josephus’ great history of the Jews from the Library at Chatsworth; as well as foundation works on Colonial Australia and a fine painting of Port Phillip in the gold rush—a small masterpiece.

Flora Australasica

First edition; one of the most attractive of all Australian botanical books and the first with illustrations taken from live specimens rather than dried plants or field sketches -- the species depicted having been grown from seeds in London nurseries.


This month we have featured a landmark in the development of Australian illustrated books: the album of early Colonial views by Joseph Lycett, Governor Macquarie’s convict-artist. 

Melbourne 2018

The highlight of our July exhibit at the at the Melbourne Rare Book Fair 6-8th July will be Mr Cust's "Sandridge Railway Jetty and Pier" . A small masterpiece: "Mr." Cust, an elusive artist whose first name is so far unknown, demonstrates with meticulous strokes an ability to conjure a sensation of intimacy and tranquility on the smallest scale. His work is reminiscent in this respect of some of the paintings of S.T. Gill; like Gill he combines a strong understanding of light and colour with a high degree of natural, artistic talent. This sensitively rendered painting is on academy board, to which Cust has painstakingly applied layer after layer of oil paint. For more detail click here

Our Book Fair catalogue includes an important and atmospheric drawing prepared for the account of the Dumont D'Urville expedition showing the Astrolabe and Zelee in pack ice; a rare early proof version of a famous engraving from the Freycinet voyage showing Dirk Hartog Island off Western Australia (with manuscript corrections by Louis de Freycinet); A Concise History, a very rare and sympathetic early account of the Australian Aborigines with four frontispiece portraits after Le Petit; an account of the monotremes by Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire with a beautifully observed fold-out engraving of wombats; an illuminated presentation address from the German Association of Bendigo to Bismarck; and a surprising Caldwell Brothers wine label featuring a kangaroo.

Simeon Album

A interesting 1860s keepsake album with historic watercolours including views of Glenelg and the Darling River. Belonging to Helene Simeon, the album has contributions by her husband-to-be John Chadwick Woore, then Commissioner of Lands in New South Wales. The pioneering names of Gooch and Finniss are included in a list of visitors and the contributions by Helene, her friends and family reveal the concerns of a young Colonial woman about to leave coastal Glenelg for life in remote New South Wales.

NSW Album

Our featured item is a unique and magnificent (and at 18.5 kgs remarkably substantial) specially prepared photographic album in a superb and complex binding by the Government Bindery. The album showcases the virtues of New South Wales, and was presented by George Houston Reid as Premier of New South Wales to the Canadian Prime Minister Sir Wilfrid Laurier during the Diamond Jubilee celebrations of Queen Victoria in 1897.