Peter Harrington Launches NEW 50 Rare Books Catalogue


Peter Harrington, the UK’s largest rare book seller and one of the leading rare book sellers in the world, are well known for the range and quality of the first edition and rare books they sell. This new catalogue illustrates that range and as Pom Harrington, the owner, says “This is a selection of our absolute finest books and manuscripts which will interest institutions, serious book collectors as well as those who enjoy collecting for their own enjoyment.”

Highlights of this catalogue include:

Classical Literature

An album of 29 original pre-publication drawings and a first edition copy of Bleak House by Charles Dickens (£95,000);
A presentation copy of The Posthumous Paper of the Pickwick Club by Charles Dickens which is inscribed by Dickens to the editor of the New York Evening Post and was given to him on Dickens’ arrival in America in 1842 (£75,000);
Jane Austen’s signature which was originally attached to a fragment of a letter about dining at Chawton Great House along with a steel engraved portrait of her (£32,500);
A first edition, presentation copy of Tales of Space and Time which is inscribed “Henry James from HG. Wells” with another comic drawing this time of a club-wielding cave man (£27,500).

Modern Literature

A first edition of Rumour at Nightfall by Graham Greene which is in its original dust jacket and as Pom Harrington says is “ one of the great rarities in the Greene canon” (£45,000);
A first edition, presentation copy of Winner Take Nothing by Ernest Hemingway affectionately inscribed to his second wife. The book was further inscribed with “PS 1939 I love you EH” (£42,500);
A first edition, one of 100 copies printed on Dutch handmade paper, of Ulysses by James Joyce which is signed by the author (£250,000);
A first edition, presentation copy of The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck which is inscribed, in gratitude, by the author (£25,000).


An attractive, first edition copy of Robert Burns Poems inscribed “To William Wordsworth Esqre. With the sincere respect & affection of Elizabeth Hume” who was an admirer (£45,000).


A copy of the rare Third Folio of Comedies, Histories & Tragedies by William Shakespeare which is regarded as the rarest of the 17th century folio editions (£325,000);
A signed, limited edition copy of An Ideal Husband by Oscar Wilde printed on Dutch handmade paper (£15,000).

Children’s Books

A first edition of Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories in the rare dust jacket (£12,500);
A first edition, presentation copy of Black Beauty inscribed by the author’s mother (£12,500).


A first edition published in the US of the first volume of war speeches Blood, Sweat and Tears by Sir Winston Churchill which contains 50 relevant signatures including those of Churchill, his wife, the Duke of Windsor (Edward VIII), Montgomery and 46 others along with related documents (£32,500).

Natural History

A very handsome set of the first complete edition and first American edition of the 7 volume Birds of America by John James Audubon which is “one of the most beautiful, popular and important natural history books published in America in the 19th century.” (£62,500);
A first edition of the 5 volume The Zoology of the Voyage of HMS Beagle by Charles Darwin and others (£175,000).


An extremely rare first edition copy of Traite des richesses by Nicolas Isnard which is described as “one of the most important contributions in the development of mathematical economics.” (£11,250);
A rare first edition of the first volume of Das Kapital by Karl Marx of which only 1,000 copies were printed (£77,500);
A newly discovered, unpublished, autograph letter from Adam Smith discussing customs, smuggling and “our future commercial connexions with our thirteen revolted colonies” written in 1783 (£75,000).


A first edition of Utopia by Thomas More which was published almost 500 years ago (£350,000).


One of the first paintings woven on a Jacquard loom which is extremely rare (£16,500).


A limited edition, specially bound, numbered copy of Porgy and Bess signed by the composers George and Ira Gershwin (£12,500).


The catalogue is available to download at and is available at both of the Peter Harrington shops. It contains detailed descriptions and photographs of each item. Peter Harrington offer an ‘unconditional guarantee’ for each item they sell on its authenticity and completeness, as described in their literature.

All of the items contained in this catalogue are displayed at the Peter Harrington shop in Dover Street which is open daily from Monday to Saturday. Visitors will be warmly welcomed by the Peter Harrington rare book specialists and experts.


Editors Notes

Peter Harrington was established in 1969 and specialise in selling and buying the finest quality original first editions, signed, rare and antiquarian books, fine bindings and library sets. In the 1970’s Peter Harrington started a successful map and print business and in 2000 they established The Chelsea Bindery which employs some of the finest binders in the world who make fine bindings, preservation boxes and restore books.

Their four-storey double-fronted shop at 100 Fulham Road, Chelsea, has more than 20,000 volumes and 6,000 prints and old maps whilst their recently opened NEW shop in Dover Street, Mayfair, has over 7,000 books arranged over two floors. The shops are open daily from Monday to Saturday and visitors who want to buy or sell books or just browse are warmly welcomed.

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