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Latest Blog Posts

Bulgakov's Master and Margarita

Harper & Row, New York 1967
Collins & Harvill, London 1967 (sold)
YMCA, Paris, 1968 (sold)
Posev, Frankfurt, 1969
"Mikhail Bulgakov's current reputation as a major 20th-century European writer is posthumous.  The story of Bulgakov's reception illustrates the tragedy of Russian culture in the post-revoluti … read more

John Sturt engraver

John Sturt engraving of Elizabeth and Mary
The Character of Queen Elizabeth, 1693
The Character of Queen Elizabeth, 1693
John Sturt's  Common Prayer engraved on silver plates
  The Character of Queen Elizabeth by Edmund Bohum illustrated by John Sturt, 1693 John Sturt (1658–1730) was a well known English engraver in his time and is popu … read more

A Booke of Christian Prayers 1578 - Queen Elizabeth's Prayer Book - John and Richard Daye

Full-page woodcut of Elizabeth I kneeling on a prie-dieu
Contemporary binding with Joane Wrayford's initials
Title page with broad woodcut showing the Tree of Jesse
Example of one of the historiated ornamental borders
  A Booke of Christian Prayers 1578 - Queen Elizabeth's Prayer Book  - John and Richard Daye Joane Wrayford and her copy of  A Booke of Christian Prayers, [collec … read more

Finding Flegon

Marijana's copy
In Flegon's book on Solzhenitsyn
Later 1963 copy
Or rather 'dating' Flegon - but not in the way it's usually understood!  The controversial publisher, Alec Flegon brought us many of Russia’s greatest writers at the height of the Cold War.& … read more

Sochi for the Summer - and now the Winter, too.

Sochi, Moscow 1959. Photos by Shagin
Sochi 1959 (Shagin)
Caulfeild, How to Ski, 1924
Caulfeild, Skiing Turns, 1926
Sochi Summer playground for the Nomenklatura – now a winter playground too? As all the world must know now, the Winter Olympics are being held in Sochi, a city in the province o … read more

A Balkan Setting for the First World War

Harry De Windt  1907
Harry himself
John Foster Fraser,  Bulgaria, 1906
 Mirko &  Natalija of Montenegro, 1903
“ … the wild and lawless countries between the Adriatic and Black Seas.”  ‘Through Savage Europe’, 1907, reprinted 1913 “Why ‘savage’ Europe?” asked a friend who recently … read more