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Welcome to Steven Temple Books

Having operated shops on Queen Street West in downtown Toronto since 1974, we closed the shop in March, 2014 and now operate from home in Welland, Ontario (close to Niagara Falls). We can see visitors by appointment. The books (currently about 6-7 thousand) are priced, on shelves. and in categories. We continue to specialize in literary books, Canadiana both non-fiction and literary, and select out-of-print and rare books (mostly hardcover) in various fields. We now have some ephemera, but don’t stock comic books, fairly recent used books, bestseller novels, nor paperbacks (unless collectible). Business is primarily by internet or mail. We welcome and pay attention to wants lists when they are of books we might actually find some day and which are worth enough money to look for.

We accept payment by Visa, MasterCard, Amex, PayPal, cheque (Canada and US only), money order – even cash !

We were established in 1974.

Upcoming Events

7 to 9 November 2014
Toronto Antiquarian Book Fair
Location: Art Gallery of Ontario
317 Dundas Street West
Baillie Court
Toronto, Ontario
Visit us at Booth 410
Click here for details.

Notable New Arrivals

ANNE OF AVONLEA. With Frontispiece and Cover in Colour by George Gibbs
London: Sir Isaac Pitman, 1909

First UK issue. pp (iii)-viii, 367 + colour frontispiece with captioned tissue guard. Newly rebound by Keith Felton in half crimson crushed morocco with lilac boards and endpapers, all edges gilt, bound-in ribbon marker, spine with raised bands, black labels, gilt lettering and ornamentation. Bound without the ads at rear. A fine copy in a pretty binding.

Made from sheets of the Boston: Page, September, 1909, first printing, this British first is very much scarcer than the American first. Her second novel, about as early as a serious collector can practically go with the British firsts. I have handled Anne of Green Gables many times in the American first printing but have only once in 35 years seen a copy of the British first. Would make a very nice present for a LMM fan. [43058]

ASBJORNSEN, Peter Christen, and Jorgen Ingebreksten Moe (Kay Nielsen)
EAST OF THE SUN AND WEST OF THE MOON. Old tales from the north. Illustrated by Kay Nielsen

London: Hodder & Stoughton, no date, 0

Tall octavo, leaf height 23 cm / 9 inches. pp (v)-(xvi), 17-285 + blinder's blank front and rear. All edges gilt. Frontispiece and 23 other tipped in captioned colour plates included in the pagination (complete). Numerous black & white drawings. head and tail pieces, and decorative borders, in text. Rebound by the Cottage Bindery, Bath, in full cream bevel edge parchment ("vellum") stamped in gilt, with illustration on front cover within decorative border, spine with lettering and four decorated compartments, decorative border on rear cover, ribbon ties at fore edges. Occasional light foxing in text, mainly in vicinity of the colour plates; else a fine copy. A later printing ca 1920s (first was also undated, 1914, with 25 c.p. with captioned tissue guards). 15 folk tales, translated from the Norwegian, which originally appeared in Sir George Dasent's POPULAR TALES FROM THE NORSE. Nielsen's masterpiece, with stunning highly stylized, beautifully coloured illustrations in an Art Nouveau style, widely felt to the greatest book from the golden age of British children's book illustration. Gorgeous book in an excellent deluxe binding. The Cottage Bindery was established in the 1960s and continues to do fine bindings.

USD $2500.00

TRUDEAU, Pierre Elliott
Glossy black & white photo by Karsh, inscribed

: , 0

25.5 x 20.5 cm photo by Joseph Karsh. "69-58" lightly rubber stamped on verso. Fine. Inscribed in the image "To Helen, with all good wishes, P.E. Trudeau, June, 1971". Trudeau is posed in profile, with one hand in pocket, other arm resting on a table. Perhaps a young Caesar. PET used this image as his personal photo in his first term in office. The photo was taken in 1968.

USD $250.00

(KENT, Rockwell)
BEOWULF. Verse translation by William Ellery Leonard

New York: Random House, 1932

Folio, 34 cm, rough grey pictorial cloth stamped in white, fore and bottom edges rough trimmed. pp [2], (148), [2] + 6 full page black & white lithos, large vignette litho to title page and small vignette litho on colophon page, by Rockwell Kent. Printed by the Pynson Printers in Hammer Uncial in reddish orange and blue with decorated initials. Edition of 950 copies signed by means of Kent's thumbprint, this is # 62. Page edges yellowed, crease to lower outer corner of front free endpaper, slight wear to spine ends and lower outer corners, else a fine copy, no owner names, lacking the dust jacket. Note: large 2 kg parcel, extra postage will be required. A handsome edition of this Old English classic.

USD $275.00

THE DEATH-SHIP: the story of an American sailor

London: Chatto & Windus, 1934

Octavo, terra cotta cloth gilt lettered, reddish brown top page edges. Spine very lightly darkened, fore edges yellowed, else fine, no owner names, top edges not faded. In a facsimile dust jacket (as new). Translated from the German DAS TOTENSCHIFF (1926) by Eric Sutton. This great writer's second book. This British edition preceded the 1934 Knopf edition (translated and revised by Traven himself) by several months. It is also scarcer than the US edition. It was originally written in English in 1923 or 1924 and was his first book to use the B. Traven pseudonym.

USD $495.00

SPENSER, Edmund (Walter Crane)
SPENSER'S FAERIE QUEENE: a poem in six books, with the fragment Mutabilitie. Edited by Thomas J. Wise

London: George Allen, 1895-97, 1897

Six volumes, quarto, original light cream pictorial cloth stamped in gilt and red, top edges gilt, others untrimmed, original red on pink illustrated card covers bound in. Fore and bottom page edges tanned; light yellowing to free endpapers from binding; very light spine yellowing; soft bruise to upper inner corner of front covers; volume I has neat professional repairs to inner hinges, rear joint, and spine ends, with light darkening at ends, gilt imprint a little flaked; volume VI has one very small brown spot on the spine; volume II has a hairline crack to front inner hinge neatly repaired; a fine set otherwise, no owner names or plates, the vulnerable white cloth remarkably clean. Edition of 1000 copies on handmade paper printed by Charles Whittingham of the Chiswick Press. 88 full- page woodcut illustrations (one double-page), 132 head and tailpieces, numerous woodcut initials, uniform illustration to front covers. Edited by the eminent book colllector, bibliographer, and forger Thomas J. Wise. A very handsome production of this great classic of late 16th century English literature, an epic poem, one of the longest in the language, and still never completed. Considered by many to be Walter Crane's best work in black & white, it was his most extensive commission as a book illustrator, taking three years to complete. Note: heavy set, extra postage will be required.

USD $2895.00

AUTHOR'S OWN COPY, with original Ted Hughes typescript

GATENBY, Greg, editor (Ted Hughes)
WHALES: a celebration (editor's own copy with Ted Hughes typescript)

Toronto: Printice-Hall / Lester & Orpen Dennys, 1983

Oblong quarto, 29 x 31 cm, blue cloth and blue endpapers. pp (xviii), (234). An anthology in tribute and support of the preservation of whales and dolphins, as depicted in literature, the fine arts, and music. A Magnificent production containing over 200 stories, essays, and poems by international writers of note, 11 musical scores, 150 b&w images and 75 in colour representing 131 important visual artists. GATENBY'S OWN COPY, signed and /or inscribed by contributors: A Alvarez (inscribed); Yehuda Amichai (autographed); MARGARET ATWOOD (inscribed); Thorkild Bjornvig (autographed); DAVID BLACKWOOD (inscribed); David Brooks (autographed); John Robert Colombo (inscribed); James Dickey (autographed); Rosemary Dobson (inscribed); Hilde Domin (inscribed); Geoffrey Dutton (inscribed twice); Hans Magnus Enzensburger (inscribed); Gavin Ewart (autographed); JOHN FOWLES (autographed); David Gascoyne (inscribed + autographed on another page); Greg Gatenby (autographed); G.H. Gervais (inscribed); Margo Glantz (inscribed); WILLIAM GOLDING (autographed); Alan Gould (autographed); Gunter Herburger (inscribed); Judith Herzberg (autographed); Daniel Hoffman (inscribed); TED HUGHES (ink transcription in his hand of ‘The little Whale’ + autograph); Michael Hulse (autographed); Jenny Joseph (autographed); M.T. Kelly (inscribed); Stanley Kunitz (inscribed); Irving Layton (autograoh); Geoffrey Lehmann (autographed twice); Dorothy Livesay (autographed); George MacBeth (autographed); GWENDOLYN MacEWEN(inscribed); David Malouf (autopgraphed); Alberto Manguel (inscribed); W.S. Merwin (inscribed); Susan Musgrave (inscribed); Richard Outram (autographed); Vasko Popa (autographed, though not a contributor); Antonio Porta (autograohed); Kathleen Raine (autographed); Judith Rodriguez (inscribed); Lawrence Sail (inscribed); Robin Skelton (inscribed); Josef Skvorecky (autograph); Kendrick Smithyman (autograph); Raymond Souster (autographed); William Stafford (autographed); Mark Strand (autographed); Andrew Taylor (inscribed); D.M. Thomas (inscribed); John Wain (autographed twice); DEREK WALCOTT(autographed); and George Woodcock (autographed). Covers have some light rubbing, small soil spots to rear cover, VG otherwise. In a supplied dust jacket, which has two soft vertical ridges, else fine. Of special interest is the Ted Hughes contribution "Little Belated Whale-Song for Greg", of which Hughes has made a full-page ink fair copy, signed. In addition is the original ribbon copy typescript, titled "Little Whale - for Charles Causley", with Hughes' name in typescript. The poem has 32 lines in eight stanzas. It was typed on an old typewriter which has punched out the "o"s throughout, Folded thrice horizontally and twice vertically; VG. >> About the circumstances of getting the poem, Gatenby has written (copy of his email included): "Back in the late seventies or very early eighties I wrote to a number of UK poets asking them to write a poem about whales or dolphins that I could use n my forthcoming anthology Whales: A Celebration, By the time of the deadline, I had not heard from Ted Hughes and just assumed he wasn’t interested. However, a few years later, Ted did accept my invitation to read at Harbourfront. Shortly after he arrived at the Harbour Castle Westin (where all of the authors at each year’s festival were accommodated) he asked me to go to his room with him as he had a little gift for me. Somewhat sheepishly he handed me the typescript of "Little Whale Song". I say "sheepishly" because he was clearly embarrassed as he explained that he had written the poem for me almost immediately after receiving my request. He told me he pinned the typescript over his desk because he felt sure he could improve upon it before sending it on to me. He told me the poem stared at him guiltily every day for months and months until, one day, he realized my deadline had passed. Then he told me that as he prepared to come to Toronto for my festival, he looked at the poem again and decided it was good as it was. As a small token of apology, he went on, he brought the typescript with him as a gift to me and by way of apology for not having sent it to me for use in my anthology. With the wisdom of hindsight I should have had him inscribe the page but the circumstances of his giving it to me did not allow me the luxury of asking for an autograph. Ted also apologized for the damaged condition of his old typewriter all of the letter "o" usages resulted in hollowed-out, tiny circles on the page. The poem was eventually published in his Wolfwatching (Faber, 1989) and has been republished many times on the web. I do not have that book at hand, so cannot tell you how much the Faber version varies from the typescript I own. However, it’s worth nothing that none of the online versions of the poem retain any of Ted’s line breaks - a rather crucial matter as far as poets are concerned." Greg Gatenby, besides editing this book, was the impresario behind Toronto's Harbourfront Reading Series and the International Festival of Authors, best festival of its kind in the world in its prime.

USD $2500.00

SHANNON, C. Hazelwood and J.W. Gleeson White, editors
THE PAGEANT (both published volumes)

London: Henry & Co. (1896 and 1897), 1896

Two volumes. Quarto, brown decorated cloth stamped in gilt (design by Charles Ricketts), brown on white decorated endpapers (by Lucian Pissarro), fore and bottom page edges rough trimmed. 1896 volumes: pp [4], (10). (244), (ix, ads). Full page and vignette illustrations in text. Spine has shallow chips at ends, a horizontal cloth split at top and partial splits to joints neatly repaired, gilt lettering flaked away; 2 small dark spots to front cover; cracked inner hinges neatly repaired; in all, about VG externally, internally fine, no owner names. Literary contributions by Swinburne, Yeats, Verlaine, Maeterlinck. Richard Garnett, Lionel Johnson, Bridges, Beerbohm, and others. Art by Dante Gabriel Rossetti (2), Whistler (2, including "The Doctor- Portrait of My Brother", an original lithograph), Charles Ricketts (2), Millais (2), Rothenstein, G.F. Watts (2), Burne Jones (2), Laurence Housman, Charles Shannon (2), and others. 1897 volume: pp [4], (10). 266, (8, ads), [2]. Full page and vignette illustrations in text. Bit of wear to foot of spine, minor wear to outer corners, foxing to endpapers, cracked inner hinges neatly repaired, bit of bubbling to cover cloth, else a VG clean and tight jacketless copy, no owner names. Literary contributions by Austin Dobson, Michael Field, Edmund Gosse, Laurence Housman, John Gray, Angus Evan Abbott ("The Gods Gave My Donkey Wings", a fantasy story by a Canadian author), Max Beerbohm, J. Sturge Moore, Maurice Maeterlinck, R. Garnett, Villiers de l"isle Adam, Ernest Dowson, Lionel Johnson, Charles Ricketts, and others. Art contents include work by Bustave Moreau (3), Dante Gabriel Rossetti (2), Charles Hazelwood Shannon (2), Burne-Jones (2), Laurence Housman, Wiliam Rothenstein, Walter Crane, William Strang, Pierre Puvis de Chavannes, George Frederick Watts (2), Charles Ricketts, and Lucien Pissarro (a woodcut in five blocks including much gilt), and others, several of the pictures printed in green ink. An essential fin-de-siècle periodical. Note: 3 kg parcel, extra postage will be required.

USD $450.00


DENISON, George T., Major (George T. Denison III) (William D. Otter)
Fenian Raids

: , 1866

HISTORY OF THE FENIAN RAID ON FORT ERIE: with an account of the Battle of Ridgeway Toronto: Rollo & Adam / Buffalo: Breed. Butler & Co., 1866. Octavo, pp [2], (iii)-vi, (7)-92 + folding map frontispiece. First edition. TPL 4490. [with] THE FENIAN RAID AT FORT ERIE, June the first and second, 1866: with a map of the Niagara Peninsula, shewing the route of the troops; and a plan of the Lime Ridge battle ground. Toronto: W.C. Chewett & Co., 1866 Octavo, pp (viii), (9)-95 + 2 folding plates. First edition. TPL 4497. [with] CORRESPONDENCE RELATING TO THE FENIAN INVASION, AND THE REBELLION OF THE SOUTHERN STATES. PRINTED BY ORDER OF PARLIAMENT [title on original wrappers, not present] Return to an address of the House of Commons, dated 26th April, 1869. for copies of all correspondence with the Imperial Government relating to the outlay incurred by Canada in defence of the frontier of the United States in 1863-4, and also arising out of the threatened Fenian Invasion subsequently, as constituting a claim for indemnity from the United States. Hector L. Langevin. [half title]. Otttawa: Department of the Secretary of State, 14 June, 1869. Octavo, pp (2), 18 (index), 176. >>>Contemporary half calf and marbled boards, spine with raised bands and label, marbled endpapers and page edges. Spine a bit rubbed, with gilt lettering flaked away but "Fenian /Raid/1866" visible in blind; cracked front joint and inner hinge neatly repaired; second map in second work has a 3.5 inch closed tear neatly repaired on blank side with clear archival paper tape and last leaf has much of the fore margin torn away but no text affected; last work trimmed close with loss of most of page numbers at top but no other text affected; otherwise a VG clean and unworn copy, front hinge tender but otherwise tight in the binding. >>>Ink ownership inscription on blank leaf at front "W.D.Otter, Major QOR , June 1870". In top margin of first title page "Major Otter, with the author's compliments". In margin of second title page "Fred. W. Otter, Toronto, C.W. Private Fred. W. Otter, No. 4 Compy, QOR, Toronto". >>>Major Otter was William Dillon Otter (1843-1929), later Sir William and as a brigadier-general became the first Canadian-born Chief of the General Staff and head of the Canadian army. Frederick Watson Otter (1849-1869) was William Otter's younger brother. Otter "began his military career in the Non-Permanent Active Militia in Toronto in 1864. Captain William Otter was Adjutant of The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada in 1866. He first saw combat with them at the Battle of Ridgeway during the Fenian Raids. He joined the Permanent Force as an infantry officer when Canada established its own professional infantry unit in 1883. On May 2, 1885, he led a Canadian force of more than 300 in the Battle of Cut Knife against Poundmaker's Cree Indians. Otter's tactics were ineffective against the defending warriors, forcing him to retreat. In 1890, Otter founded the Royal Canadian Military Institute as a body for "the promotion and fostering of military art, science and literature in Canada." - Wikipedia. He was appointed the first Commanding Officer of the Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry in 1893. During the Second Boer War Otter commanded the 2nd (Special Service) Battalion of The Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry, where they were considered by many British officers to be the best infantry battalion in the country. He became commander of Canada's military in 1908, and retired in 1910. He was the grandfather of distinguished Canadian historian Desmond Morton, who wrote a biography of him. His brother Fred joined the Number 4 Company of the QOR in 1865 as soon as he was eligible, winning his commission as an ensign in Sept., 1867. However, he died of consumption 21 Jan., 1869. Major (later Lieutenant-Colonel) George Taylor Denison (III) (1839-1925) was "educated at Upper Canada College. In 1861 he was called to the bar, and was from 1865-1867 a member of the city council. From the first he took a prominent part in the organization of the military forces of Canada, becoming a lieutenant-colonel in the active militia in 1866. He saw active service during the Fenian raids of 1866, and during the North-West Rebellion of 1885 (but no combat). Owing to his dissatisfaction with the conduct of the Conservative ministry during the Red River Rebellion in 1869-70, he abandoned that party, and in 1872 unsuccessfully contested Algoma in the Liberal interest. Thereafter he remained free from party ties. In 1877 he was appointed police magistrate of Toronto. Colonel Denison was one of the founders of the Canada First movement, which did much to shape the national aspirations from 1870 to 1878, and was a consistent supporter of imperial federation and of preferential trade between Great Britain and her colonies." - Wikipedia. Denison was also rabidly anti-American and served the Confederate secret service as a spy during the war, which in effect blocked his advancement in the Canadian military. He kept a Yankee sword from the Fenian raids as a poker for his fire. >>>Denison commanded a company of volunteer cavalry at the Battle of Ridgeway, but saw no combat. He published his account of the battle in August, 1866. It was the first of the three books on the conflict published that summer and though deeply flawed for historical truth, it was the most truthful of the three. Because of questions about the conduct of the Canadian commanders (Alfred Booker at Ridgeway and John Stoughton Dennis at Ft. Erie), two official inquires were held, both headed by Denison. Though both colonels were exhonerated, there was a cover-up and the real truth about the battles that afternoon were not published until the PhD thesis of Peter Wronsky in 2011. >>>William Otter was a captain at the time of Ridgeway, serving as adjutant of the Queen's Own Rifles of Toronto under Major Charles T. Gillmor. It was his first taste of action. TPL 6209 states that there were at least three editions of Denison's HISTORY OF THE FENIAN RAID published in 1866, but I believe TPL is in error, that there was only one. Some library records call THE FENIAN RAID AT FORT ERIE (Chewett & Co.,1866) the second, or third, edition of Denison, but it is an entirely different book, "compiled by the publishers mainly from articles in the Globe, Leader, and Telegraph, Toronto, with notes and suggestions from eye-witnesses, and an appendix of official documents." - TPL 4497. The third item in this volume are official statements about claims being made against the United States by the Canadian government for expenses incurred because of the Civil War and (on pp 139 to end), the Fenian Raids. A TERRIFIC CANADIAN MILITARY ASSOCIATION COPY, an Otter family copy of two scarce books plus government report on the Fenian Raids.

USD $2200.00

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