02 March 2016

The Duchess of Devonshire's Cookbooks

 If you follow our site, Lucindaville, you will know that we are big fans of the Mitford Sisters.  One of our early posts on Cookbook Of The Day was the Duchess of Devonshire's Chatsworth Cookery Book.  While many famous folk produce ghost-written cookbooks and then claim them to be their own, the Duchess was very upfront in her book that she didn't really cook, but she had eaten most of the dishes.

Today, Sotheby's held an auction entitled: Deborah, Duchess of Devonshire: The Last of the Mitford Sisters. Among the items were her cookbooks.  The original estimate for over 40 books was 300 -500 pounds. Has anyone at Sotheby's purchased cookbooks recently?  Needless to say, the lot sold for 3125.
A COLLECTION OF COOKERY BOOKS, 1875-2011, including:

Cooke, M.C. British Edible Funghi. Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co., 1891, 12 colour plates, library stamp to title, frontispiece and list of plates loose, worn at head and foot of spine) 

Beeton, Isabella. Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management. Ward, Lock & Co., 1907, 30 colour plates, later dark red backed green boards, lettered in gilt on spine)

Boulestin, X. Marcel and Jason Hill. Herbs, Salads and Seasonings. Heinemann, 1930, number 23 of the edition of 75 copies signed by both authors, spine faded)

Heath, Ambrose. The Country Life Cookery Book. Country Life Limited, 1937, wood engravings by Eric Ravilious, boards rubbed)

Maclean, Veronica. Lady Maclean's Diplomatic Dishes. Collins, 1975, inscribed by the author, head of spine worn with loss)

Parker Bowles, Tom. E is for Eating. Long Barn, 2004, inscribed by the author and the illustrator, dust-jacket)

Green, Rachel. Chatsworth Cookery Book. Green Shoots, 2007, inscribed by the author.

An additional 32 others, of which 6 inscribed to Deborah, Duchess of Devonshire, mostly original cloth and wrappers, many with the Duchess's bookplate, some wear to dust-jackets.

What do we most covet from the list?  Ambrose Heath's The Country Life Cookery Book.

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