The last of the recent spate of big book auctions (Fine Books & Manuscripts) was held yesterday at Sotheby's New York. The Arthur Conan Doyle manuscript and the first edition Principia both failed to sell, so the unexpected high spot proved to be David Roberts' The Holy Land (1842-49), a six-folio-volume work containing 240 lithographed plates. That better than doubled its estimate, selling for $338,500.
The second edition Catesby made $194,500, while the Shaw/Hill Picturesque Views of American Scenery (1820) fetched $182,500. One first octavo edition of Audubon's Birds sold for $59,375; a second copy of the same set fetched $74,500. A first edition of The Federalist made $122,500.