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SOLD - SIGNED 1st Edition vintage book Richer Than Spices by Gertrude Z Thomas, 1965, history of taste/manners/style/class in England and US

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Description

There is no other book like this one.

There is little information about this book out there. I didn't know this when I picked it up. I was more excited that I found the author had signed it inside, which made it important and valuable to me if not to anyone else. So I bought it not knowing exactly who Gertrude Z Thomas was, though I did leaf through to get an idea of what this book was about.

To be honest, I didn't need to leaf through -- the title page says it all. I have seen long subtitles but this is one of the longest for sure. The book is "entitled" Richer Than Spices, but the rest of the title reads like a book ad: How a Royal Bride's Dowry Introduced Cane, Laquer, Cottons, Tea, and Porcelain to England, and So Revolutionized Taste, Manners, Craftsmanship, and History in Both England and America.

Are you kidding, Gertrude? No, she's not, and I kind of love her for it. I wondered if her writing style would mirror the title and it doesn't, or not that I could tell. If you like run-on sentences you'll be disappointed, but if you like quotes like the following, you should find this book extremely enchanting and engaging, as I did.

"As the seventeenth century slipped into the eighteenth, men in every little hamlet preferred diversion in a coffeehouse. London by then had probably five hundred to choose from. Within noisy, smoky, crowded rooms, every class and calling sharpened wits on each other's abrasive tongue and whittled current convictions and suppositions into modern shape. Tea, and its effects on men's minds, morals, and manners, was a favorite controversial subject, which throughout the century satirists delighted to exaggerate"

or

"While the public part of Catherine's dowry was attacked pro and con as to its national advantage, her personal appointments were being both loudly criticized and openly admired. After the first sharp comments at the outlandish appearance of Catherine and her Portuguese retinue, appraising eyes began privately to approve the "Indian Cabinets" that studded her Hampton Court apartments like so many smoldering gems.
Cabinets were an important part of seventeenth-century decor, for it was an age that coveted and acquired mementos of each glimpse into the wonders of the expanding world. Agates, onyxes, and intaglios; a lump of amber with a toad enclosed; the eggs of rare birds; or a skull carved of wood by Albrecht Durer--such were the "curiosities" and "rarities" that composed the cabinet collection of every would-be "virtuoso."
In fact, some of these talented gentlemen with inquisitive minds were quite inadvertently assembling in their cabinets the beginnings of several of today's oldest museums."

and her description at the beginning of King Charles II:

"Never had Charles seen so much money. For years, only the promise of seldom paid pensions had held his body and soul together.
His was a gallant soul, a handsome body; and ever since his teens he had wandered penniless with his mother from one European court to another. First as Prince of Wales, then as uncrowned King of England, Charles Stuart was considered a poor matrimonial risk from every angle except that of personal attractiveness. He had no money, no kingdom, and no prospects of acquiring either. "La Grande Meademouiselle," first cousin of Louis XIV, would have none of him, neither would the Royal Princess of Orange. AS to the various German princesses, he brushed them off with "Oddfish! They are all dull and foggy!"

:) There's something about this book that feels both like a history book and a diary of Gertrude Z Thomas' thoughts on her own history book. It links together bits and details of history that you would either know or not, and moves steadily through time in the way that one writing about Marie Antoinette would do--with a focus on product and fashion, on the times and how this one girl, the young woman Catherine of Barganza who would marry King Charles II, affected everyone in her sights and beyond, in so many ways. It is exactly as the title suggests.

And there's something awesome in that, that historical girl-power story and its reverberations through not only history but how it led to the various periods' details and movements in "manners" and "taste." Why do we like certain things in decor today? Some of it--a great deal of it actually--was originated by Catherine, and many of us do not even know that. Now I do. Buy this book, with the author's own personal signature inside, and learn it as I did! You'll feel more fashionable and knowledgable afterwards, trust me.

And here's the straight information you may be looking for:

-Full title: Richer Than Spices: How a Royal Bride's Dowry Introduced Cane, Lacquer, Cottons, Tea, and Porcelain to England, and So Revolutionized Taste, Manners, Craftsmanship, and History in Both England and America
-Author: Gertrude Z. Thomas
-Inscribed to: Elizabeth Powell
-Format: Hardcover, gilt detail on spine and front, signed first edition, illustrated
-Condition: Nearly mint.
-Publisher: Borzoi Book, Alfred A. Knopf
-Copyright: 1965 Gertrude Z. Thomas
-Date published: 1965
-Provenance: I picked this one up at a shop in Middlefield CT, just outside of the bigger city of Middletown, a tiny hole-in-the-wall place. I was attracted to it because of its bright colors and found the content incredibly interesting and the illustrations sealed the deal for me :) This was last year 2015 sometime in the summer.
-Pricing: I priced this book this way because of its unfortunate lack of dust jacket, but the fact it is signed by the author, out-of-print, a first edition, and an extremely interesting historical text for anyone interested in literally any word that pops up in the extremely long full title. Illustrated books also fetch a higher price and are rarer/more valuable.
There is no other book like this one.

There is little information about this book out there. I didn't know this when I picked it up. I was more excited that I found the author had signed it inside, which made it important and valuable to me if not to anyone else. So I bought it not knowing exactly who Gertrude Z Thomas was, though I did leaf through to get an idea of what this book was about.

To be honest, I didn't need to leaf through -- the title page says it all. I have seen long subtitles but this is one of the longest for sure. The book is "entitled" Richer Than Spices, but the rest of the title reads like a book ad: How a Royal Bride's Dowry Introduced Cane, Laquer, Cottons, Tea, and Porcelain to England, and So Revolutionized Taste, Manners, Craftsmanship, and History in Both England and America.

Are you kidding, Gertrude? No, she's not, and I kind of love her for it. I wondered if her writing style would mirror the title and it doesn't, or not that I could tell. If you like run-on sentences you'll be disappointed, but if you like quotes like the following, you should find this book extremely enchanting and engaging, as I did.

"As the seventeenth century slipped into the eighteenth, men in every little hamlet preferred diversion in a coffeehouse. London by then had probably five hundred to choose from. Within noisy, smoky, crowded rooms, every class and calling sharpened wits on each other's abrasive tongue and whittled current convictions and suppositions into modern shape. Tea, and its effects on men's minds, morals, and manners, was a favorite controversial subject, which throughout the century satirists delighted to exaggerate"

or

"While the public part of Catherine's dowry was attacked pro and con as to its national advantage, her personal appointments were being both loudly criticized and openly admired. After the first sharp comments at the outlandish appearance of Catherine and her Portuguese retinue, appraising eyes began privately to approve the "Indian Cabinets" that studded her Hampton Court apartments like so many smoldering gems.
Cabinets were an important part of seventeenth-century decor, for it was an age that coveted and acquired mementos of each glimpse into the wonders of the expanding world. Agates, onyxes, and intaglios; a lump of amber with a toad enclosed; the eggs of rare birds; or a skull carved of wood by Albrecht Durer--such were the "curiosities" and "rarities" that composed the cabinet collection of every would-be "virtuoso."
In fact, some of these talented gentlemen with inquisitive minds were quite inadvertently assembling in their cabinets the beginnings of several of today's oldest museums."

and her description at the beginning of King Charles II:

"Never had Charles seen so much money. For years, only the promise of seldom paid pensions had held his body and soul together.
His was a gallant soul, a handsome body; and ever since his teens he had wandered penniless with his mother from one European court to another. First as Prince of Wales, then as uncrowned King of England, Charles Stuart was considered a poor matrimonial risk from every angle except that of personal attractiveness. He had no money, no kingdom, and no prospects of acquiring either. "La Grande Meademouiselle," first cousin of Louis XIV, would have none of him, neither would the Royal Princess of Orange. AS to the various German princesses, he brushed them off with "Oddfish! They are all dull and foggy!"

:) There's something about this book that feels both like a history book and a diary of Gertrude Z Thomas' thoughts on her own history book. It links together bits and details of history that you would either know or not, and moves steadily through time in the way that one writing about Marie Antoinette would do--with a focus on product and fashion, on the times and how this one girl, the young woman Catherine of Barganza who would marry King Charles II, affected everyone in her sights and beyond, in so many ways. It is exactly as the title suggests.

And there's something awesome in that, that historical girl-power story and its reverberations through not only history but how it led to the various periods' details and movements in "manners" and "taste." Why do we like certain things in decor today? Some of it--a great deal of it actually--was originated by Catherine, and many of us do not even know that. Now I do. Buy this book, with the author's own personal signature inside, and learn it as I did! You'll feel more fashionable and knowledgable afterwards, trust me.

And here's the straight information you may be looking for:

-Full title: Richer Than Spices: How a Royal Bride's Dowry Introduced Cane, Lacquer, Cottons, Tea, and Porcelain to England, and So Revolutionized Taste, Manners, Craftsmanship, and History in Both England and America
-Author: Gertrude Z. Thomas
-Inscribed to: Elizabeth Powell
-Format: Hardcover, gilt detail on spine and front, signed first edition, illustrated
-Condition: Nearly mint.
-Publisher: Borzoi Book, Alfred A. Knopf
-Copyright: 1965 Gertrude Z. Thomas
-Date published: 1965
-Provenance: I picked this one up at a shop in Middlefield CT, just outside of the bigger city of Middletown, a tiny hole-in-the-wall place. I was attracted to it because of its bright colors and found the content incredibly interesting and the illustrations sealed the deal for me :) This was last year 2015 sometime in the summer.
-Pricing: I priced this book this way because of its unfortunate lack of dust jacket, but the fact it is signed by the author, out-of-print, a first edition, and an extremely interesting historical text for anyone interested in literally any word that pops up in the extremely long full title. Illustrated books also fetch a higher price and are rarer/more valuable.

Reviews

5 out of 5 stars
(53)
Reviewed by CGFlores85
5 out of 5 stars
Jan 2, 2018
I ordered this as a gift and was very happy with Colleen’s feedback and willingness to help me track down this one of a kind book! It even showed up before Christmas thanks to a speedy delivery despite the short notice. I will definitely be visiting No Other Book Like This again.
SOLD - Vintage book Recreations in Astronomy by Henry White Warren, First Edition 1879, star charts/maps, MANY RARE full color illustrations

Reviewed by itzjeffduh
5 out of 5 stars
Dec 30, 2017
Great item, great seller, fast shipment!!! The book was perfect, exactly as described. Thanks!
Vintage book classic young adult The Luckiest Girl by Beverly Cleary, famous child/YA author, 1958 special Book Club Edition, RARE cover art

Reviewed by L.M. Biddulph
5 out of 5 stars
Dec 16, 2017
This book is BEAUTIFUL! I was so excited to receive it yesterday, so I could read it over Christmas. I read the abridged version of Thomas Wingfold, Curate over a decade ago and loved it, so I have been looking forward to this so much. Thank you!!!!!!!! :-D
Vintage book Thomas Wingfold, Curate. by George MacDonald, rare edition 1880, famed "Father" of The Inklings including Tolkien and C S Lewis

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But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.

FAQs

Absolutely! I'm willing to do anything to get this book to you, but I will not write on it. If it is not in the condition you want, I know preservation techniques and will certainly oblige as best I can. You just need to let me know.
I will wrap the book any way you want. It is special and so are you, you deserve it! I will also write cards, include photographs, anything you'd like that would make this transaction more, well, you.
I won't tell you how to care for your book, but as to how they are cared for now, they are housed in two places -- some are wrapped in plastic in my main room in the part of the house that used to be a quaint B&B, lined on lovely old wooden bookshelves; others are stacked in piles or leaning on cool, creative and different bookends all round the room, and all are given care, attention, and kept away from my dog :)

Others sit in my library, in built-in authentic 1800s wooden and glass-door library shelves that line the walls in a secluded room in a historic home on the shore. With vintage, warm lamplights over the tiny marble fireplace, the library's windows catch plenty of sunlight--the books are in good homes and will arrive undamaged.
If the book comes later than expected this does not mean it was sent late. Every book is sent within 1-3 business days, unless one of the days is a Sunday, then it could be an extra day. This applies to International orders as well, but they might take longer to get to you than in-country orders. If there is a problem, please bring it up with UPS or see Etsy's policies.
I am more than willing to hunt down a specific book for you. This can take time, however, and would be a matter of personal back-and-forth on the site so you would have to keep in contact. There is no guarantee. I'm good at finding things however, and if I cannot find it to sell to you myself I will direct you to where I can find it online, if I can.

Important to note, however, that I may have it in my holdings already so it ALWAYS helps to check in with me. Listings come up continually, and it may just be waiting here to get processed and put up.
Contact me directly via the site and I will do my absolute best to help correct it. There should be no problems.
Always willing to make new friends and take on new jobs or opportunities -- this business does not stop me from working a full or part time job, and I am currently looking, so please contact me! Dempseylynch@gmail.com. I am definitely interested in talking with you and love meeting new people (especially book lovers of course).
Sure! Although the books are priced the way they are and are worth that amount based on a lot of factors (condition compared to others available online, if there are any available online or if it is the only one, age and whether it is signed or special in some way, etc.) I am always willing to hear you out as to why you think the books price is off, and work with you as best I can. I cannot guarantee the price will change, that is bad for my business, but I will listen to you. Don't be afraid to reach out. The worst that can happen is I will say no.

I put the reasons behind my pricing method for each item at the end of the listing so check that out if you're curious too :)

SOLD - SIGNED 1st Edition vintage book Richer Than Spices by Gertrude Z Thomas, 1965, history of taste/manners/style/class in England and US

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Overview

  • Vintage item from the 1960s
  • Feedback: 53 reviews
  • Favorited by: 7 people
  • Gift message available

Shipping & returns

Get it fast! Ready to ship in 1–3 business days.
From United States
Shipping upgrades available in the cart
No returns or exchanges
But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.
in New Haven, Connecticut

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