Quagga Rare Books & Art
NEWSLETTER - June 2010

 

RUDOLF MARLOTH AND THE FLORA OF SOUTH AFRICA

Rudolf Marloth and The Flora of South Africa

Herman Wilhelm Rudolf Marloth was born in Prussia in 1855 and came to South Africa in 1883, shortly after obtaining a Ph. D in chemistry at the University of Rostock.

The day after his arrival in Cape Town he is said to have climbed Table Mountain and started his herbarium of South African plants. This was to grow to 20 000 sheets of dried plant material that was eventually incorporated in the National Herbarium in Pretoria.

Marloth

Marloth was an analytical chemist by profession but his passion was for botany. Early expeditions led him to the mountains of the Boland, the Winterhoek near Tulbach being one of his favorite haunts. He was relentless in his search for mountain flora, and no climb was too arduous. The part of his life devoted to the search of the rare and the wonderful in the floral world was a great adventure and he made many discoveries. Marloth’s enthusiasm for mountaineering led him to become one of the founding members of the Mountain Club of South Africa in 1891.

After the publication of two books. Elementary Botany and the much lauded Das Kaapland (1908), Marloth began work on what General Smuts termed his Magnus opus, The Flora of South Africa. Sir Lionel and Lady Phillips generously bore the cost of production of the four volume set.

Colour printing, an important element of this work was in its infancy at the time vol.I went to press (1912/1913). The only firm that could undertake the eight colour process that was required was in Dresden, Germany.

Marloth

Due to three separate fires only 500 copies of volumes I and IV were produced. One thousand five hundred sets of colour plates having been destroyed. Later a few sets of volume I and IV being bound together as one volume, were produced from some of the plates salvaged from the fires. But it is the original copies that have one distinguishing factor and that is the famous missing fig. 59 (vol IV). This was inadvertently left out when the volume was bound and later made available for insertion, but very few copies have it.

It is however the colour plates that make Marloth’s set so beautiful. Painted mostly in Cape Town from living plants. The artists were principally Ethel May Dixie, Ester Smith, Florence Amy Thwaits, Miss M Franks and Peter McManus. The original paintings and most other related material is housed in the University of Stellenbosch collection.

Despite the fires The Flora was completed over a period of twenty years. Publication began with volume I in 1913, Volume IV being issued two years later, before volumes II and III, “as a matter of expediency”. Volume II was published in 1925 and Volume III in 1932, each of these two volumes in two parts.

Marloth

The original green cloth bindings were unfortunately, particularly susceptible to insect damage and many of the volumes have fallen apart and/or been rebound. Good condition sets of this important work are now exceedingly scarce.

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MUAFANGEJO, John Ndevasia

MUAFANGEJO, John Ndevasia
Value of Water
Linocut, 29/100 (framed),
1972
33 x 38.5cm
Some light scattered foxing.
Born 1943, Angola
Died 1987, Namibia
R6000

Studied at Rorke’s Drift Art Center in Natal from 1967-69 Best known for his bold linocuts with religious and traditional scenes. This example depicts the value of water in daily rural life. The growing of corn and the processing thereof into meal, and the quenching of cattle and the processing of their hides into leather.

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Online Auction
Our mini auction will end at 5pm on Friday 2 July. Please note that postage will be calculated seperately, according to your location and requirements.

The following books are on offer this month:

Click on the book title to bid.

Eighteenth Century Architecture in South Africa
Eighteenth Century Architecture in South Africa
Reserve: R1300
AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
An excellent survey illustrated with detailed plans and elevations drawn to scale and over a hundred photographs. First printed in 1933. The text includes comments on materials. A definitive reference guide for South African architecture.
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Miscast, Negotiating the Presence of the Bushmen
Miscast, Negotiating the Presence of the Bushmen

Reserve: R2600
AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
Edited and signed by Pippa Skotnes. “In Miscast, eminent scholars explore the term ‘Bushman’ and the relationships that give rise to it, from the perspectives of anthropology, archeology, comparative religion, literary studies, art history, and musicology.
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Beautiful Gardens of South Africa
Beautiful Gardens of South Africa

Reserve: R300
AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
One cannot imagine the splendid array of gardens hidden behind walls and houses throughout South Africa; some nestling in the shelter of indigenous forests, some gracing large farms or historic and celebrated homesteads, others in valleys or on mountain tops, and still others secret retreats amid the bustle of the city.
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Mozambique, A history.
Mozambique, A history.
Reserve: R160
AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
The History of Mozambique deals with the Pre-colonial period, before the Portuguese explorers rounded the Cape, The Portuguese conquest, includes the long period of Portuguese rule and the growth of Nationalism, the Guerilla war and collapse of the colonial government.
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Historical Simon’s Town
Historical Simon’s Town
Reserve: R550

AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
Vignettes, reminiscences and illustrations of the harbour and community from the days of the V.O.C and Royal Navy with notes on administrators, personalities, old buildings, navigation and shipwrecks.
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SEKOTO, The Art of Gerard Sekoto
SEKOTO, The Art of Gerard Sekoto
Reserve: R170

AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
An unread copy. A 64 page monograph of this most famous of South African artists, by Barbara Lindop. This is a follow up or even second edition to the scarce monograph Gerard Sekoto.
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Cecil Skotnes
Cecil Skotnes
Reserve: R330

AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
An unread copy. Well illustrated and researched monograph on this South African Artist.
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The False Bay Story
The False Bay Story
Reserve: R250

AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
In this, the 19th book by Burman he looks at the early Western inhabitants of the False Bay area.
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Regency Cape Town, Daily Life in the Early Eighteen-Thirties with Illustrations from the Hitherto Unpublished Johannesburg Album of Sketches By Sir Charles d’Oyly
Regency Cape Town, Daily Life in the Early Eighteen-Thirties with Illustrations from the Hitherto Unpublished Johannesburg Album of Sketches By Sir Charles d’Oyly
Reserve: R240

AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
From the dustjacket flap: “In 1974 the Africana Museum, Johannesburg bought an album of 100 pencil drawings by Sir Charles D’Oyly, all made in Cape Town in the early 1830’s and only recently discovered in London. They give a humorous and unsophisticated view of daily life in the Mother City under the governorship of Sir Lowry Cole: a picturesque town of some 10 000 inhabitants.”
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Life at the Cape a Hundred Years Ago, By a Lady
Life at the Cape a Hundred Years Ago, By a Lady
Reserve: R90

AUCTION ENDS 5PM, FRIDAY 2 JULY 2010
Quoted from the dustjacket flap: "This fascinating book gives a day-to-day picture of life in Cape Town and its neighboring suburbs a century ago."
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QUAGGA KALK BAY
George Curtis

86 Main Road
Kalk Bay
7975
South Africa

Tel: +27 (0)21 7882752
Fax: +27 (0)21 7883581
Mobile: +27 (0)82 4583795

email:
george@quaggabooks.co.za
QUAGGA STELLENBOSCH
Simon Curtis

1 Andringa Street
Stellenbosch
7600
South Africa

Tel: +27 (0)21 8870113
Fax: +27 (0)21 8870113
Mobile: +27 (0)83 4630404

email:
simon@quaggabooks.co.za
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