Author Archives: Simon Beattie

Rimsky-Korsakov’s Harmony Manual

As regular readers of this blog will know, my interests include Russia, music, and lithographic printing.  So it was with some excitement that I came across the following book: Published in 1885, and lithographed throughout from a manuscript original, this … Continue reading

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Rule, Britannia! In Russia.

I’ve written before about First World War material on this blog (such as here and here), but even though there is a lot on the market you still come across things you’ve never seen before. Published around 1914, these little … Continue reading

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A Russian choir in Victorian England

Dmitrii Agrenev-Slaviansky (1834–1908) was a Russian singer who founded a choir in 1868, and toured for many years around Europe and the USA.  According to one source, they gave more than 15,000 concerts over 40 years. This printed programme, from … Continue reading

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On the Road in Russia

‘The death of Stalin in 1953 brought about a gradual, partial relaxation of the terror that for decades had governed the attitudes of the Soviet populace, and particularly the intelligentsia.  At the height of the cold war, Soviet isolation from … Continue reading

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The first dog drama

This is a copy of the first edition of a hugely-successful play, published 1803, thought to be the first ‘dog drama’, which began a vogue for the use of trained animals on the London stage. Playwright Frederic Reynolds (1764–1841) wrote … Continue reading

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‘Somewhat removed from the text of Shakespeare’

This was fun to catalogue.  Not only because it’s a triple bill (500 × 735 mm), but because it promotes an extravaganza at London’s Olympic Theatre in April 1853, the highlight of which was a Macbeth burlesque by Francis Talfourd (1828–1862). … Continue reading

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‘A refined image of disability’

The full caption reads: ‘ ‘This extraordinary young Man was born Dec.r 18. 1769, at Hook, in Hampshire, without Arms or Legs, as here delineated, occasioned as his Mother supposes by a Fright she suffered when pregnant with him.  Notwithstanding these … Continue reading

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A thick-skinned English journalist

Something else I shall have on my stand at the London International Antiquarian Book Fair next week is this, a curious Russian lithograph from the 1850s: It’s entitled ‘The editor of the English newspaper “The Times” and the Russian bootmaker’, … Continue reading

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French journals, personified

As I wrote last week, I am currently getting ready for the London International Antiquarian Book Fair at Olympia.  Something else which will be on my stand is this, a large (445 × 537 mm) hand-coloured French lithograph.  I bought … Continue reading

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The Foundling Hospital Collection

I am currently getting ready for the London International Antiquarian Book Fair at Olympia, at which I shall be exhibiting, among other things, some nice eighteenth-century English music, recently acquired. This is a copy of what’s known as the Foundling … Continue reading

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