Soyer.   Alexis Benoit     - Selling his wife's paintings.
A letter handwritten & signed by Soyer.
to an unidentified correspondent, detailing two items in a catalogue of paintings [not present].
2 pages. 8vo. Full cream coloured sheet 228 x 182 mm. Folded 115 x 182 mm. A full sheet folded in half with a slight split at the bottom of the fold. It is in a very clear and legible condition. Dated Nov. 23rd 1857. Soyer writes “Dear Sir I beg to send herewith a calogue of my paintings you will find the Two sent you marked Nos…. & … In centre, or rather between the two you might insert “Youth & Age” & describe them in the usual place viz. At the bottom as per catalogue – I remain Dear Sir Yours faithfully A Soyer.“ Housed in a very fine handmade slip case with a label on the front cover.
- The Wikipedia entry for Emma [Jones] Soyer is worth repeating here, to help put the letter in a context. To quote -- The daughter of a Mr. Jones who died in 1818, she was born in London in 1813, and was carefully instructed in French, Italian, and music. At a very early age she became a pupil of F. Simoneau the painter, who in 1820 married her mother, Mrs. Jones. Finding that Emma had talents for drawing, Simoneau ultimately devoted the whole of his time to her instruction, and before the age of twelve she had drawn more than a hundred portraits from life with surprising fidelity. On 12 April 1837 she married Alexis Soyer the cook. She now turned her attention to portraits in oil, and, with her master, traveled in the provinces and gained great popularity. Upon her return to London she produced 'The Blind Boy,' 'The Crossing Sweeper,' 'The Bavarians,' 'Taglioni and the Kentish Ceres.' In 1842 she completed her last work, 'The Two Organ Boys.' She also showed two paintings at the 1842 Paris Salon ('L'aveugle de la tour de Londres' and 'Portrait de M. Soyer' - Nos. 1729-30). Her portrait famous of Soyer was also engraved by Henry Bryan Hall. On 29–30 Aug. 1842 she had complications with her pregnancy, owing to fright produced by a terrible thunderstorm, and she died the same night at her residence near Charing Cross, London. She was buried at Kensal Green Cemetery, London on 8 September, where her husband erected a sumptuous monument to her memory. Between 1823 and 1843 fourteen of her pictures were exhibited at the Royal Academy, thirty-eight at the British Institution, and fourteen at the Suffolk Street Gallery (Graves, Dictionary of Artists, pp. 130, 221). In June 1848 one hundred and forty of her works were exhibited at the Prince of Wales's bazaar, under the name of Soyer's Philanthropic Gallery, on behalf of the Spitalfields soup kitchen, and a catalogue was printed. Among these pictures was 'The Young Savoyards Resting,' a work that obtained for Madame Soyer the name of the 'English Murillo.' Two of her paintings - 'The Jew Lemon Boys' and 'The English Ceres,' were engraved by Gérard. In Paris, where many of her pictures were exhibited, her reputation stood higher than in her native country - unquote. The paintings to which Alexis Benoist Soyer (4 February 1810 – 5 August 1858) refers to, are most likely those created by his late wife. This letter is written less than 9 months before his death and fifteen years after Emma’s. He must have inherited all of her artistic output and possibly had a catalogue printed to sell them. Indications are that Soyer was not careful with money. This makes sense as he left only £1500 at his death. A rum distiller called David Hart succeeded in taking all the cash and Soyer's personal papers in lieu of an unpaid debt. He destroyed all the papers and notes. Because of that short-sighted and selfish action, any signed or manuscript notes in Soyer's hand are extremely rare. Only rare letters like this one here, owned by a third party are likely to come onto market.

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Ephemera category
ref number: 11234

Soyer.   Alexis Benoit     Rare; signed twice.
Written by Soyer, whilst in the Crimea.
"Scutari Barrack Hospital, Constantinople. 26th April 1855. My Dear Sir I am happy to inform you that since the last time I had the pleasure of shaking hands with you, I have employed my time with the greatest success and no doubt inform the receipt you will have heard thro the public press of the rapid progress I have made – I have now left for a few days the great Barrack Hospital of Scutari for Kullalee, where my services are also required - I shall shortly proceed to Balaclava. I have not yet presented my accounts which I need hardly say far exceeds the amount advanced me by the Government, having brought with me two cooks from Paris, besides my Secretary, but will do so very shortly – A Soyer - I apprehend W. Hilton, the Purveyor in Chief is the gentleman to whom I shall have to apply – With the highest consideration I have the honour to be yours very ably. A Soyer. ___ Croome Esquire."
1½ pages of Soyer's light script written while in the Crimea. Signed at the bottom of the first page, including the extra half page postscript with the second signature. Measuring 13 x 7½ inches with folds‚ in good clean condition‚ with an integral blank leaf. The letter housed in a slip inside a handsome folder with red marbled paper and label.
- The Crimean War was a military conflict fought between October 1853 and March 1856, in which Russia lost to an alliance of France, the British Empire, the Ottoman Empire and Sardinia. Alexis Soyer (1810 – 1858)‚ the French chef who became the most celebrated cook in Victorian England, enhanced his reputation by his involvement in the welfare of the wounded soldiers in the war. His reputation was already assured as he had also worked to alleviate the suffering of the Irish poor in the Great Irish Famine (1845–1849)‚ and towards their relief, he contributed a penny for every copy sold of his pamphlet 'The Poor Man's Regenerator' (pub; 1847). During the Crimean War‚ Soyer went to the Crimea at his own expense to advise the army on cooking more nutritious and healthy food. Later he was paid his expenses and wages equivalent to those of a Brigadier-General. In the North Wales Chronicle of Saturday May 5th 1855, in a quite full account written by Soyer himself and sent to the paper, we learn that he opened his large kitchen on the site of a previous Turkish kitchen, on Easter Monday at the huge Barrack Hospital in Scutari. Present was a number of Ladies and Gentlemen who tasted the new diet, compared to dishes alongside of the old diet. It was a huge success. In the article, Soyer expresses a fulsome gratitude to Florence Nightingale for her good organisational skills and help in providing him with all the materials he needed to start the Kitchen. (It is recorded elsewhere however, that she did not much appreciate Soyer and his efforts, openly criticising him). Soyer's work was very successful; it started to save countless lives that otherwise, before his efforts, would have been lost. The mortality rate alone at Scutari's Barrack Hospital was 100 soldiers and upwards daily. An unimaginable toll. Florence Nightingale's well documented, heroic nursing standards were not enough. However much Nightingale was put out by the flamboyant Soyer, the pragmatic synergy between their differing aspects of care; medical combined with a nutritious balanced diet was crucial. In the "Memoirs of Soyer" written and published 1859, by his two secretaries, F.Volant & J.R.Warren, they inform us that the death rate was putting such a strain on the hospital staff, that the bodies were just rolled up in their bed blankets and buried in mass pits. Soyer also provided the new diet at Balaclava, and at three institutions at Kullalee, and was very well supported there by Lady Stafford, having been previously interviewed about his Catering needs by her husband, Lord Stafford. At that time also, Soyer was waiting for his soon-to-be-famous new model camp-stove which was capable of cooking continuously for 200 soldiers every three hours. One can only imagine the magnitude of effort there. Soyer himself did not escape unscathed. His two secretaries also write that Soyer himself, due to overwork, fever and severe dysentery over a long period of time nearly died. Interestingly, he was saved by the intelligent ministrations of a very young 21 year old doctor, Mr Ambler. Despite, at first, large misgivings about the young Dr Ambler, he quickly revived Soyer with a diet of iced drinks, a little solid food and a daily quantity of eggs beaten up with port wine. For the rest of his time in the Crimea, the young doctor became a very good friend and companion to an extremely grateful Soyer. Finally, at the end of the Welsh newspaper article is a wonderful praising statement by Brigadier General, Commanding Troops - W. Pauley, where he fully approves of the way Soyer has taken the usual provisions, re-arranged the proportions and made such a difference with the simple act of cooking. As all Soyer’s personal papers were burned just after his death, then this extremely rare and pertinent letter, could only have come from the aforementioned Mr Cromme’s extant estate.

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Ephemera category
ref number: 11244

Soyer.   Alexis Benoit     - In fine original condition.
Soyer's Culinary Campaign
BEING HISTORICAL REMINISCENCES OF THE LATE WAR. WITH THE PLAIN ART OF COOKERY FOR MILITARY AND CIVIL INSTITUTIONS, THE ARMY, NAVY, PUBLIC, ETC. ETC. By ALEXIS SOYER, AUTHOR OF "THE MODERN HOUSEWIFE" "SHILLING COOKERY FOR THE PEOPLE" ETC. LONDON: G.ROUTELEDGE & CO., FARRINGDON STREET. NEW YORK: 18, BEEKHAM STREET. 1857. {The right of translation is reserved.]
FIRST AND SOLE EDITION. 1857. 1fep a small tipped in inscribed letter to a mother from a soldier at the battle-front at Kadikoi. [1] Frontispiece of an aged Soyer. Title page with tissue guard. [1] 1pp Dedication to Lord Panmure. [1] 1pp Preface. On the verso of the preface is another tipped in note in the same script, relaying a story about Soyer. [1] 2pp Contents. An illustrated drawing of Soyer by H.G.Hine. [1] 1-593. [1] 1p Index to Addenda. 2pp Advertisements. 1fep. The frontispiece nice and clean. Overall very clean inside. Original blue cloth binding with bright gilt pictorial vignette on front cover and the original gilt device and text on the spine. Blind tooling also on both covers. A very interesting volume and a rare item in this condition.
- The story behind this book starts on 2 February 1855, when Soyer wrote to The Times offering to go to the Crimea at his own expense to advise on the cooking for the army there. He began by revising the diet sheets for the hospitals at Scutari and Constantinople. In two visits to Balaklava he, Florence Nightingale and the medical staff re-organised the provisioning of the hospitals; he also began to cook for the fourth division of the army. On 3 May 1857 he returned to London, and on 18 March 1858 he lectured at the United Service Institution on cooking for the army and navy. He also built a model kitchen at the Wellington Barracks, London. He died on 5 August 1858 at St. John's Wood, London and was buried on 11 August in Kensal Green cemetery. Soyer wrote many other cookery books including: Délassements Culinaires. (1845) The Gastronomic Regenerator (1846) Soyer's Charitable Cookery (1847) The Poorman's Regenerator (1848) The Modern Housewife of Menagere (1850) The Pantropheon; or, History of Food (1853) A Shilling Cookery Book for the People (1855) and lastly this volume, Soyer's Culinary Campaign (1857).

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Antiquarian category
ref number: 11242

Soyer.   Alexis Benoit    
The Gastronomic Regenerator
THE Gastronomic Regenerator: A SIMPLIFIED AND ENTIRELY NEW SYSTEM OF COOKERY, WITH NEARLY TWO THOUSAND PRACTICAL RECEIPTS SUITED TO THE INCOME OF ALL CLASSES. ILLUSTRATED WITH NUMEROUS ENGRAVINGS AND CORRECT AND MINUTE PLANS HOW KITCHENS OF EVERY SIZE, FROM THE KITCHEN OF A ROYAL PALACE TO THAT OF THE HUMBLE COTTAGE, ARE TO BE CONSTRUCTED AND FURNISHED. BY MONSIEUR A. SOYER, OF THE REFORM CLUB. FOURTH EDITION. LONDON: SIMPKIN, MARSHALL, &CO., STATIONERS' HALL COURT: AND SOLD BY JOHN OLLIVIER, PALL-MALL. 1847.
8vo. Pp. Frontispiece of 'Soyer' Title Page. Engraved picture of 'Heaven and Hell' 2pp 'List of Patrons' (i-xl) (1-720) (several engraved pictures throughout) 17pp 'Table of Contents' 1pp 'Advertisements' 24pp 'Madame Soyer' 1pp 'Times review. 2 fep. Bound in green half calf with dark green pebbled cloth boards and calf corners. Spine with elaborate gilt and blind tooling, gilt lettering, raised bands and a brown label with "Soyers Cookery" in gilt lettering. Internally very clean however some slight foxing on fep before title page and on frontispiece. A very good copy of a fairly scarce book.
- The illustrations are: The frontis drawn by Emma Soyer and engraved in steel by H.B. Hall and fifeteen wood engraved plates, two folding, including six plates illustrating elaborate dishes, and others showing the famous drawing of the Reform Club Kitchen, a table of a weathy family, Soyer's table at home, a drawing of two Bavarians by Emma Soyer and a self-portrait of Emma Soyer engraved in steel by H.B. Hall. There is also a folding plate on blue paper that is one of Soyer’s menus for a very special banquet at the Reform Club on July 3rd 1846 for 150 couverts that included the guest of honour - His Highness Ibrahim Pasha. It consisted of a massive 46 courses and on a spit in the dining room was a huge roasting Baron of Beef ala Anglaise. The dinner was a highlight of the Amir’s London visit. Four months earlier on March 22nd 1846, Ibrahim Pasha - His Highness, The Amir of Trans-Jordan came to London to sign a treaty with His Majesty The King in respect of the United Kingdom recognising the status of Trans- Jordan as a sovereign independent State. The menu was not in the first edition of 1846 but was in subsequent editions including this one here.

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Information

Antiquarian category
ref number: 10941

Soyer.   Alexis Benoist     - Soyer's detailed plan.
A large print of Reform Club Kitchen.
A print of the original drawing and lithograph of the new Reform Club Kitchens drawn by Jn. Farring Arch. Dedicated by Soyer to the members of the Club.
590mm x 908mm. Framed in a dark brown Walnut frame 25mm wide, with a thin gold inside border. Covered in a non-reflective glass. Overall in excellent condition. An original print from the open plan drawing of the new Kitchen, commissioned by Soyer and the Reform Club. Published by A. Soyer, 26 Charing Cross. 1842.
- The new club opened its doors on 24th May 1836 at Dysart House, 104 Pall Mall, next door to the Carlton Club. Its membership had already reached one thousand, including nearly 250 MPs. The Committee set about commissioning a new clubhouse at immense expense, from the architect Charles Barry, a task that was completed, to spectacular effect, five years later. Special attention was paid to the kitchens, which were designed to the specifications of the brilliant and charismatic chef Alexis Soyer who had been hired in 1837. The restaurant, traditionally known as the 'Coffee Room' runs the entire length of the building overlooking the garden at the back. The gallery is reached by a remarkable tunnel-vaulted staircase, again inspired by Italian models. The Library, the Smoking Room and the Card Room lead off the Gallery.

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Information

Modern category
ref number: 11198

STAVELY.   S.W.    
THE WHOLE NEW ART OF CONFECTIONARY,
SUGAR BOILING, Icing, Candying, Wines, Jelly Making, &c, &c, Which will be found Very beneficial to Ladies, Confectioners, Housekeepers, &c. particularly to such as have not a perfect knowledge of that art. (a small straight line) A NEW EDITION. (a small straight line) To which is now added several new and useful Receipts, Never before published. (a small straight line) By S.W. STAVELY, Nottingham, (a small straight line) PRICE ONE SHILLING. (a small straight line) In this edition several Pages of new Receipts are added, never before introduced in this Work. (a small straight line) Wilkins and Son, Printers, Derby. The whole text enclosed in a single thick line border.
n/d. Cover page with same text as the title Page. Verso advert for another receipt book by same printer. Title page. [1] (1)iv - vi Preface. (1)8 - 57. (1)59 - 60 Contents. Manyblank feps due to filling the binding. last six pages browned ans edges worn without loss. Quarter tan binding with gilt tooling and text on spine. Boards with marbled paper.
- A thin but quite comprehensive booklet on sweet-making. There are no references for Stavely nor his booklet on the bibliographies except an 1830 eleventh edition in Cagle.

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Information

Antiquarian category
ref number: 11289

Stein.   Rick     - A signed copy.
Far Eastern Odyssey.
Rick Stein's Far Eastern Odyssey 150 new recipes evoking the flavours of the Far East. BBC BOOKS.
FIRST EDITION. 250x190mm. Paste-down and end-paper with a colourful map. [1] Half title with Stien's signature in a black felt-tip. Double page photograph frontis. 1p. 1p Contents. 1p Photograph of Stien. 5p Introduction. (6)18-307. 1p Photograph of ingredients. 309-314 Ingredients. 315-319(1) Equipment, Bibliography and Index. (1) End-paper and paste-down with a colourful map. D/W. Fully bound in black cardboard with black lettering on spine. Condition as new.
- Rick Stein is un-doubtably a great chef, cookery writer and entertaining TV food pundit. Very articulate and knowledgeable, he expresses a clear passion for fine cooking, produce and suppliers. His cooking is deceptively simple that belies long experience and an unusual ability to cook and serve his dishes as they should be, (most top chefs devote a high percentage of their efforts to presentation and fantasy, and the preciseness of the finished dish rarely allows the original product to show). Of all the others, the meals he produces on TV are the ones that I would most like to eat. He has produced eleven fine cookery books. This one on offer here is the result of his far eastern cookery odyssey on BBC TV. Very well done with good recipes, good detailed information and mouth-watering full page photographs. A very desirable item.

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Information

Modern category
ref number: 11170

Stuart-Wortley.   A. J.    
The Grouse
NATURAL HISTORY BY THE REV. H. A. MACPHERSON SHOOTING BY A. J. STUART-WORTLEY COOKERY BY GEORGE SAINTSBURY WITH ILLUSTRATIONS BY A. J. STUART-WORTLEY AND A. THOBURN SECOND EDITION LONDON LONGMANS, GREEN, AND CO. AND NEW YORK: 15 EAST 16th STREET 1895 All rights reserved
12mo. Pp. Half Title. Frontispiece of 'Home Life' Title Page. (i-vi) 1pp 'Illustrations' (3-293) 2pp 'The Badminton Library' 24pp 'Longmans Classified Advertisements' Bound in red half calf with marble boards and calf corners. Blind tooled borders around boards. Spine with intricate gilt tooling and gilt lines. Also with green labels, gilt lettering and raised bands. Overall a very clean copy both inside and out.
- An interesting book to all lovers of finely cooked game; especially the king of game birds -- the Grouse.

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Information

Antiquarian category
ref number: 10957

TAVERNER PHILLIPS.   F.     - A private printing for the Company of Cooks. Very rare.
A History of the Worshipful Company of Cooks, London.
Compiled by F. TAVERNER PHILLIPS, Citizen and Cook of London. Juxia medicinam esse coquorum officium simulantium et adulationem quartae particulae civilitatis. Quintilian’s translation of a quotation from Plato’s Gorgias. LONDON 1932 (the 450th anniversary of the Incorporation of the Cook’s company).
FIRST EDITION. 12mo. Inside front cover and fep with marbled paper. 1fep with inscription to C.Harold Ridge from the Compiler October 1946. Half title, Verso with notation of the book being a private printing for the Worshipful Company of Cooks. [1] Frontispiece of the Cooks’ Company Arms. Title page. [1] (1)viii Contents. 1p List of Illustrations. [1] (1) xii-xiii Preface. (1)xv Authors Forward. [1] (1)xviii-xi Introduction. [1] (1)2-191. [1] (1)104-207 Index. [1] 1fep. Inside back cover and fep with marbled paper. Original full red cloth binding with gilt text on spine and gilt armorial and text on front cover. Text block has original untrimmed pages. Considering its age, its in wonderful original condition.
- The Cook’s Guild of London is the oldest. This book was compiled and written by Taverner Phillips, who was also a cook. It was a private printing which probably means it was a very small number published. Including the frontispiece there are 13 Illustrations showing everything to do with the Cooks’ Company, its cups, badges and silverware, to a complete list past Masters and Wardens, and a very comprehensive history dating from its first mention in Deed Pole – May 21st 1500. The Roll of the Cooks’ Company however goes back to 1309-1312 when mention of Cooks’ redemptions have been extracted from the Letter Book D at the Guildhall, London. After the incorporation of the Cooks’ Company the earliest extant list to be found, is in a manuscript volume in the Public Record Office (Chapter House Books, Vol.93) under the heading of ‘Pastelers’. The title page of the volume is inscribed ‘The Companyes of all the Craftes or Mysteries of London’. Although undated, it was compiled in 1538. This is a fantasstic book. Also considering it was compiled and written by a cook it is all the more fascinating. It should be a part of the curriculum of all Catering colleges. An enlarged later edition was compiled and published in 1982. See item - ref:# 11112, on this site.

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Information

Modern category
ref number: 11222

Thrupp.   Sylvia     - A fine historical study.
A Short History of the Worshipful Company of Bakers of London
Half Title with the Worshipful Company of Baker's Crest.
FIRST EDITION 1933. 153x232mm. 2feps. Half title of Baker’s crest. [1] Title page. [1] v-vii Forward. [1] ix Author’s Preface. [1] xi Contents. [1] xiii Illustrations. [1] 1-170. 1p Photograph. [1] 171-172 Supplementary Notes. Photograph. [1] 173-176 List of Company Records. 177-182 List of Company Masters. p183 List of Company Clerks. 184-187 List of Benefactors. 188-189 List of the Company Livery. 190-201 Chapter Notes. 202-207 Index. 9p Decorative Scenes. 1fep. Twenty three pages of photographs and decorative scenes all with tissue guards. Red quarter calf binding with green cloth boards with bright gilt tooling on front board and spine (photo 1 below). Excellent condition externally and internally.
- During the year 1931-2, Frederick Abraham Mostyn became the Master of the Guild or Mistery of Bakers. He undertook the restoring and re-decorating of the ancient Company Hall after fifty years of neglect. As the Baker’s Company is one of the oldest and most venerable of the London livery companies, Mostyn also decided to put on record for the first time the history of the Company from its foundation. The earliest reference to the bakers is at the beginning of the reign of Henry II. The baker’s charter was granted by Queen Elizabeth I in1569. (photo 2 below) Mostyn approached Miss Sylvia Thrupp, M.A., Ph.D., of the London School of Economics. She had, circa. 1930 published an essay on ‘The Grocers of London’, a study that dealt with English Trade in the fifteenth century. She agreed to Mostyn’s request, although much of the history of ‘The Company of Bakers’ lay hidden in documents couched in mediaeval Latin and French scripts. Failing precise and trustworthy accounts of the origins of mediaeval craftsmen’s gilds, two of the main theories is, one, compounding for tolls and taxes, and two, the right vested in gild officers to supervise and govern the trade to which they were connected. From this historical basis Sylvia Thrupp starts, and takes the reader through a very interesting tour of the growth of the Company of Bakers up to 1933, the date of Mostyn’s forward at the beginning of the book. The list of company Masters on page 177 begins with John Jenyns who was in office from 1481-1489. This is not only the story of the bakers, but Thrupp has skilfully weaved in other significant livery companies of London. This allows us to see the Baker’s Company in the proper historical context of other venerable crafts. A wonderful book; Moyston chose his historical author well.

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Information

Modern category
ref number: 11097