Skip To Content

Your privacy is important. Our Cookies Statement explains how we use cookies on this site. You can change their use at any time. You accept them by continuing to use this site. Our Privacy Statement explains how we use and protect your data.

Sale BK14: Books, Maps and Prints

Books, Maps and Prints Icon

Wednesday, 26th August 2015

Okehampton Street, Exeter

Books, Maps and Prints Sale

  • Sale
  • Lots


Specialist sale of books, prints and maps covering art and art reference books, children's and illustrated books, history, literature, biography, military, naval, travel, topography, science, natural history, reference and sporting books as well as photographs, manuscripts, prints and maps.

This auction has 399 fine art lots.

Sale Notes

Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood's Books Maps & Prints Sale on the 26th August 2015 contains some of the most exciting material ever handled by the department, especially in its manuscript section: Most prominent is a contemporary transcript of letters by Lieut-Col Robert Batty describing the Battle of Waterloo at first hand (BK14/148). One of these letters is the original source for the much-repeated (and misquoted) phrase 'Up, Guards, and at them' which Wellington did not in fact recall saying after the event.

In this the bicentenary of the great battle, this document is expected to fetch £25,000-£30,000. At the battle, Wellington rode his trusty steed 'Copenhagen' and in this sale is being offered a lock of Copenhagen's mane (BK14/149) with an excellent provenance from the Fortescue family of Castle Hill in Devon. A 'snip' at £3,000-£5,000!

From land battles to sea ones - there is a signed letter in the hand of Horatio Nelson dated 1801 (BK14/137), after he lost his arm, which is estimated at £2,500-£3,500.

Also included is a lot of important and well-researched correspondence relating to the French Wars (BK14/133) and other fascinating manuscript material.

In the realm of literature, there are some important lots including a splendid edition of Cave Birds by Ted Hughes, Illustrated by Leonard Baskin. It is a boxed folio edition limited to 125 copies and signed by author and artist. It has a personal inscription to a friend of Hughes and an original and somewhat bawdy poem inscribed to this friend. It is anticipated to fetch £2,500-£3,000 (BK14/39).

Another particular treat in this section is a first edition in original parts of George Eliot's Middlemarch (BK14/92), although in a slightly delicate state, this rarity should comfortably achieve its £1,000-£1,500 estimate.

There is a particularly special manuscript version of the Koran (BK14/100), which may be in the hand of Shah Umm Salma and is beautifully executed. Included in the lot is an 18ct gold filigree case to contain the book and together these are expected to fetch £3,000-£5,000.

An especially interesting section of prints, maps and photographs should ensure some exciting competition at the auction.

Contact for Sale

For any information about this sale, please contact:-

Richard BearneRichard Bearne

Tel:+44 (01392) 413100