Hidden Treasure

Now this was a lot of fun to discover. I purchased an old leather sewing kit. It was in excellent shape and apparently had nothing inside it except a rusty threaded needle and brown paper padding at the bottom. However, there was something quite interesting and well hidden wrapped in that plain brown paper.



















The mysterious thing about these old book pages is that they have “1724” marked in pencil on them, which is something a dealer would have done and yet they are stuffed at the bottom of a sewing kit and cut to the edges in a way that indicates the are being used as padding. Interesting naive woodcut illustrations. I like some of the little details, especially the skull and bones with mushrooms.

8 thoughts on “Hidden Treasure

  1. One thing that doesn’t come through in the pictures is the fragrance of this thing. It’s a complex blend of ancient paper, leather, and old-lady perfume. The sort of thing that would send some olfactorily sensitive types into a Stendhal Syndrome-like reverie, with notes of melancholia and nostalgia.

  2. What an incredible find! Are you going to display them and if so – how do you think you will do it so that you can see both sides? I am assuming they are printed on both sides? You must have been thrilled unwrapping them!

  3. Wow. Finds like this make me really miss living on the East Coast. Out here in the West you don’t find nearly as many truly old wondrous things. (They are here, but not in abundance.) Seattle wasn’t even founded until 1851! :)

  4. C.P. I think you should start editing my blog posts. I always leave out this kind of important information

    Cathie. They are printed on both sides so I am not sure how to display them. I do tend to favor one side on each page though. These were just too much fun to discover and unwrap.

  5. Myrrh. I really am in an especially good spot for finding such treasures. I’m sure this is one of the oldest townships in the U.S. and pretty much everyone came through here on the way out there.

  6. This is an 18th century German Roman Catholic devotional book, not a Bible. The skull and bones at the base of the cross represent the grave of Adam, indicating that Christ died to rescue Adam from his death, and therefore all of humanity. The title of this book is “The Heavenly Paradise Garden of the Soul.”

  7. The mystery of these pages was not so much bibliographical, as how they came to find themselves tucked into a sewing kit, and where the rest of the book has gone to.

  8. Thanks for the translation and information Rev. Cwirla. I understand the symbolism of the skull and bones. It was the addition of the mushrooms that I thought unusual and had not seen before. I wonder if there any significance to those other than decoration?

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