It's a little late for Halloween but on Tuesday, November 9, Swann Galleries in New York will offer a wide range of books that includes an intriguing selection of occult material. Shown above is Francis Potter, An Interpretation of the Number 666, first edition, Oxford, 1642 which is estimated to sell for $1,000 to $2,000. Other occult highlights include Johannes Trithemius, Polygraphie et Uniuerselle escriture Cabalistique, first edition in French of the earliest treatise on cryptography, Paris, 1561 ($3,000 to $4,000) and Jean Bodin, La Demonomanie des Sorciers, one of the most celebrated books on the theory and practice of witch hunting, Paris, 1598 ($800 to $1,200).
Should your bibliophile tendencies be a bit more angelic, the sale also features an illuminated manuscript Book of Hours in Latin and French, on vellum, with 13 large and two small miniatures in colors and gold, Paris, late 15th century with 16th- century additions which is estimated to sell for between $15,000 and $20,000). A set of the second Estienne Hebrew "pocket" Bible, which is considered one of the most impressive examples of Hebrew printing of the French Renaissance, 17 parts in eight volumes, bound in 16th-century calf with gilt arabesque centers, Paris, 1544-46 is estimated at $10,000 to $15,000. The sale also includes a variety of medical and scientific books including a first edition of the first complete textbook of astronomy in Hebrew. The books will be on public exhibition Friday, November 5, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, November 6, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Monday, November 8, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Tuesday, November 9, from 10 a.m. to noon. An illustrated catalogue is available for $35 from Swann Galleries, Inc., 104 East 25th Street, New York, NY 10010, or online at www.swanngalleries.com.