If you have $15,000-20,000 you do not know how to spend, you might want to buy the FIRST VOLUME only of Edward lear’s original 1846 Book of Nonsense:
If you can’t afford it, at least watch this extremely interesting lecture by Matthew Bevis, Edward Lear’s Vision, or here if you prefer to get it from iTunes together with his and Jasmine Jagger’s previous podcasts. Matt here explores the remarkable interconnections between Lear’s nonsense and his painting; also included are some surprising discoveries about Edward Lear’s indebtedness to Thomas Rowlandson in one of his picture stories. Don’t miss this!
Here is the auction description for the Book of Nonsense from Christie’s website:
LEAR, Edward (1812-1888). A Book of Nonsense. Derry Down Derry. London: Thomas McLean, 1846.
The rare first edition of Lear’s classic book of children’s verse. The Manney copy. This work popularized the limerick, although it was not yet known by that name, as a humorous form of verse. Lear recalled in 1871: “the lines beginning There was an Old Man of Tobago were suggested to me by a valued friend, as a form of verse lending itself to limitless variety for Rhymes and Pictures” (Noakes). Three limericks present here were omitted from later editions, and have been published only in recent reprints. According to ABPC, only three complete copies of this book have sold at auction in the last thirty years. Noakes 72(c); Schiller Nonsensus(1988) passim, census no. 22.
Volume one only (of 2), octavo (141 x 210mm). 37 lithographed leaves, printed on rectos only (some foxing, some marginal repairs).Original lithographed pictorial boards (skillfully rebacked in red morocco, rubbed, corners retouched); blue quarter morocco slipcase. Provenance: Edgar S. Oppenheimer (d.1958, his sale Sotheby’s Hodgsons, 21-22 October 1976, lot 1527) – Justin G. Schiller (bookplate) – Richard Manney (bookplate; his sale Sotheby’s New York, 11 October 1991, lot 202).