Antiquarian Auctions

SA Auction #94 begins on 30 Sep 2021

US Auction #9 begins on 30 Oct 2021

Timlin (William)


Published: London, George Harrap & Company Limited, No date (1923)

Edition: First edition

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Illustrated title page and 48 colour plates by the author and 48 decorated sheets of calligraphic text all mounted on stiff grey card, original white parchment back and grey paper covered boards lettered on upper cover in black, the spine is richly decorated and titled in gilt and is unusually clean and bright.

The bottom corner of the upper board is bumped and the paper worn through, inscriptions of previous owners on both the front endpapers.

Two 1 centimetre tears in the card at the bottom of the title page, 2 centimetre tear in the margin of the contents leaf of part I, tear in the inner margin of the first plate repaired with tape (see illustration), another small tape repair at the bottom of one of the text pages, otherwise the text and plates are bright.

The binding is a little loose as often is the case with the book. Overall a good copy with minor imperfections in the scarce dust jacket which is torn and with some loss and is now preserved in a Brodart protector.

2000 copies of this extraordinary book were published. Only 738 copies were sold (350 to the United States). In 1928 1208 copies were remaindered. Timlin paid 425 pounds towards the publication and received 4/6d. per copy plus a royalty of 10% of the net amount received. A 10% royalty only was paid on the copies sold in the United States. 500 pounds was paid for the film rights which was shared equally between the author and publisher. The film was to be called \"Get off the Earth\" but was never made.

William Mitcheson Timlin (1892 - 1943) was born in Northumberland, the son of a colliery foreman and studied art in Newcastle before his family emigrated to South Africa, where he completed his studies in art and architecture. He then practised as an architect, designing a number of major public buildings in Kimberley; at the same time he worked as an artist, producing paintings, etchings and pastels of conventional subjects, in addition to the watercolour fantasies for which he is best known. He also wrote stories and music, and did periodical illustrations. In 1923 he published The Ship that Sailed to Mars, which he wrote, and illustrated himself. He began work on another fantasy book entitled The Building of the Fairy City but it was never completed.

  • Jacket Condition: Poor
  • Binding Condition: Good
  • Overall Condition: Good
  • Size: 4to (310 x 240 mm)
  • Sold By: Clarke's Africana & Rare Books
  • Contact Person: Paul Mills
  • Country: South Africa
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Telephone: 021 794 0600
  • Preferred Payment Methods: Visa & Mastercard via PayGate secure links and Bank transfers or Xoom transfers via PayPal
  • Trade Associations: ABA - ILAB, SABDA

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