People have been writing about sex since they have been writing. Often they had to do this underground or in exile. Many books have misleading title pages, stating the book was published in Paris (where it was often legal) or simply saying “Private, for subscribers” which was also a away around the censorship laws. Sometimes books were masked as anthropological or scientific work. Often books were banned and publishers went to jail. Each work of erotica that survived is a part of a much neglected (and often shunned) history. Our collection spans the mere “bawdy” to the sexually explicit both in literature and in the artwork that accompanied that literature. We also have sexology studies into the “exotic” and “perverse” sexual practices around the world often presented in an intentionally salacious way.

  • "Killer" Burke in "Out", (n.p. n.d.) 4.5" x 3", 8pp. pamphlet, stapled Tijuana bibles (also known as eight-pagers, bluesies, gray-backs, Jiggs-and-Maggie books, jo-jo books, Tillie-and-Mac books, and two-by-fours) were little pornographic comic books produced in the United States from the 1920s to the early 1960s.
  • 1601 A Tudor Fireside Conversation As Written by the Ingenuous, Virtuous and learned Mark Twain, wit., Embellished by the worthy Alan Odle, Mark Twain, illustrations Alan Odle (Land's End Press, USA, 1969, stated "At London, Printed for Subscribers Only and are to be sold at ye beare Back-Side in Maiden Lane") 12 1/2" X 9 1/2", 24pp (unpaginated), hardbound with dust jacket, blue boards with blue titles, pages, pages printed in such a way that the lower edge is uncut (six folded sheets of paper printed on one side, making up 4 pages) [Date: 1601.] Conversation, as it was the Social Fireside, in the Time of the Tudors is the title of a humorous work by Mark Twain, first published anonymously in 1880. Edward Wagenknecht once referred to it as "the most famous piece of pornography in American literature." Its content is irreverent and vulgar rather than obscene, and its purpose seems to be comedic shock rather than erotic arousal. It would thus qualify as ribaldry rather than pornography. Twain wrote 1601 during the summer of 1876 (between writing Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn), for the amusement of his closest friend, Reverend Joseph Twichell, 1601 was later first published by another friend, John Hay, who later became Secretary of State. The work circulated among printers (due to it's often archaic type font) and many small batches were printed, however the authorship of the work remained unverified until Twain finally acknowledged he wrote it in 1906.
  • "1601" or conversation as it was at the fireside in the time of the tudors and sketches old and new by Samuel L. Clemens, Mark Twain, Preface by Samuel Roth (The Golden Hind Press Inc., New York, 1933) 9 1/8" X 6 1/8", 204pp, hardbound no DJ, red cloth boards with gilt decorations and title, lfair condition, boards loose but intact, binding intact, fading on boards and spine [Date: 1601.] Conversation, as it was the Social Fireside, in the Time of the Tudors is the title of a humorous work by Mark Twain, first published anonymously in 1880. Edward Wagenknecht once referred to it as "the most famous piece of pornography in American literature." Its content is irreverent and vulgar rather than obscene, and its purpose seems to be comedic shock rather than erotic arousal. It would thus qualify as ribaldry rather than pornography. Twain wrote 1601 during the summer of 1876 (between writing Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn), for the amusement of his closest friend, Reverend Joseph Twichell, 1601 was later first published by another friend, John Hay, who later became Secretary of State. The work circulated among printers (due to it's often archaic type font) and many small batches were printed, however the authorship of the work remained unverified until Twain finally acknowledged he wrote it in 1906. This book contains 1601 and numerous sketches previously published as "Sketches Old and New"
  • 1601 or Conversation at the social fireside as it was in the time of the tudors, Mark Twain (Privately Printed in New York City, 1927) 6 3/4" X 4 1/2", 33pp (unpaginated), hardbound with glassine dust jacket, decorated boards and orange spine, decorated end papers, deckle pages, very good condition, original glassine dust jacket, some pages remain uncut, presumably designed by Earl Emmons (or a close copy of that one). [Date: 1601.] Conversation, as it was the Social Fireside, in the Time of the Tudors is the title of a humorous work by Mark Twain, first published anonymously in 1880. Edward Wagenknecht once referred to it as "the most famous piece of pornography in American literature." Its content is irreverent and vulgar rather than obscene, and its purpose seems to be comedic shock rather than erotic arousal. It would thus qualify as ribaldry rather than pornography. Twain wrote 1601 during the summer of 1876 (between writing Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn), for the amusement of his closest friend, Reverend Joseph Twichell, 1601 was later first published by another friend, John Hay, who later became Secretary of State. The work circulated among printers (due to it's often archaic type font) and many small batches were printed, however the authorship of the work remained unverified until Twain finally acknowledged he wrote it in 1906.
  • anonymous (Hearton Publishing Co., Hartsville, France, nd.) 5.5" X 4", 32pp, softcover, good quality for age, very pornographic photos, stated "Illustrated from Life"
  • A Complete Encyclopaedia of the Sexual Sciences, Dr. Iwan Bloch, trans Dr. M. Eden Paul (Falstaff Press, New York, 1937) 8.75" X 5.75", xxx+790pp, hardbound, no DJ, decorative red cloth with gilt lettering and decorations. The 30 pages of the preface printed in black with red decorations (mostly praise of the book and the author by various people including Dr. Bloch). Good condition, corners bumped, some fading/spotting on cover and spine, binding very good. "The author's aim in writing this book was to write a complete Encyclopaedia on the sexual sciences, and it will probably be acknowledged by all who study its pages that the author has accomplished his intention in a very scholarly manner, and in such form as to be of great value to the professions for whom this translation is intended. The subject is no doubt one which appeals to and affects the interests of all adult persons, but the publishers have, after very serious and careful consideration, come to the conclusion that the sale of the English translation of the book shall be limited to members of the legal and medical professions." -from Publisher's Note
  • A Complete Encyclopaedia of the Sexual Sciences, Dr. Iwan Bloch, trans Dr. M. Eden Paul (Falstaff Press, New York, 1937) 8.75" X 5.75", xxx+790pp, hardbound, no DJ, decorative blue cloth with gilt lettering and decorations. The 30 pages of the preface printed in black with red decorations (mostly praise of the book and the author by various people including Dr. Bloch). Fair condition, some soiling and water staining, boards strained but holding. "The author's aim in writing this book was to write a complete Encyclopaedia on the sexual sciences, and it will probably be acknowledged by all who study its pages that the author has accomplished his intention in a very scholarly manner, and in such form as to be of great value to the professions for whom this translation is intended. The subject is no doubt one which appeals to and affects the interests of all adult persons, but the publishers have, after very serious and careful consideration, come to the conclusion that the sale of the English translation of the book shall be limited to members of the legal and medical professions." -from Publisher's Note
  • A Night of Cleopatra, Théophile Gautier, illus. Paul Avril, preface by Anatole France (Société des Beaux Arts, Paris, nd.[c.1895]) 6.5"x10.25", xxiv+113pp, red boards with paper title on spine, top edge gilt, others deckled, tissue guards protect numerous illustrations by Paul Avril throughout within text and fullpage, frontispiece in color, good+ condition, stain at bottom of preface pages One of Cleopatra's Nights (Une nuit de Cléopâtre) is a historical short story by the French writer Théophile Gautier, (Pierre Jules Théophile Gautier 1811-1872), a French poet, dramatist, novelist, journalist, and art and literary critic.  It was first published as a six-part serial from November 29-December 6 1838 in La Presse. It relates an imagined romantic incident in the life of the Ptolemaic queen of Egypt, Cleopatra VII. Cleopatra crosses the Nile to her summer palace in her royal cange. She confesses to her slave Charmion to a horrible ennui. She is oppressed by the thought of the Egypt she rules and all its ancient, preserved dead; only love can redeem it for her. Later Meïamoun, a hopeless admirer of the queen who has intrigued her with an arrow-borne declaration of love, is caught spying on her in the bath. In a capricious leniency, Cleopatra treats him to one night of love, hosting an orgiastic banquet in his company and even dancing before him. With the morning comes a cup of poison, which he willingly takes to drink. She stays his hand, only to be distracted by a clarion heralding the arrival of Mark Antony. At this signal Meïamoun says "You see the moment has come: it is daybreak; it is the hour when happy dreams take flight." He drinks and falls dead, and Cleopatra lets fall a single teardrop, the only one she has ever shed. Antony arrives and asks meaning of the corpse; it is only a poison she was testing, she tells him, and bids him sit beside her to watch the dancers. Édouard-Henri Avril (1849-1928) used the pseudonym "Paul Avril" for his erotic work. He was a French painter and commercial artist. His career saw collaboration with influential people like Octave Uzanne, Henry Spencer Ashbee and Friedrich Karl Forberg. He is one of the most celebrated erotic artists of his age. Avril was a soldier before starting his career in art. He was awarded with the Legion of Honour for his actions in the Franco-Prussian War.
  • A Spahi's Love-Story, Pierre Loti [pseud. Julien Viaud], illus. Robert Dean, illus. Gaston Trilleau (Charles Carrington, Paris, 1907, #153/1000) 9" x 5.75", 330pp, hardbound, yellow cloth and batik design paper over boards, tipped-in color frontispiece. Deckled edges, top edge gilt. good condition, bumped corners. Julien Viaud (1850-1923) was a French novelist and naval officer. This his third novel (originally titled "Le Roman d'un Spahi"), was originally published in 1881. It recounts the tragic story in the dark middle ages of a Turkish soldier, who fell in love with a woman from a far away culture with a very different background. Color frontispiece by Robert Dean tipped in and six etchings by Gaston Trilleau throughout the book.
  • A Spahi's Love-Story, Pierre Loti [pseud. Julien Viaud], illus. Robert Dean, illus. Gaston Trilleau (Charles Carrington, Paris, 1907, #219/1000) 9" x 5.75", 330pp, hardbound, yellow cloth and batik design paper over boards, tipped-in color frontispiece. Deckled edges, top edge gilt. fair condition, bumped corners and worn edges, binding and boards are loose but holding, binding slightly cocked. Julien Viaud (1850-1923) was a French novelist and naval officer. This his third novel (originally titled "Le Roman d'un Spahi"), was originally published in 1881. It recounts the tragic story in the dark middle ages of a Turkish soldier, who fell in love with a woman from a far away culture with a very different background. Color frontispiece by Robert Dean tipped in and six etchings by Gaston Trilleau throughout the book.
  • Acting in Private "An Old Old Story", (The London Press, London England, n.d.) 4.5" x 3.5", 8pp. pamphlet, stapled Tijuana bibles (also known as eight-pagers, bluesies, gray-backs, Jiggs-and-Maggie books, jo-jo books, Tillie-and-Mac books, and two-by-fours) were little pornographic comic books produced in the United States from the 1920s to the early 1960s.
  • Acting in Private "An Old Old Story", (The London Press, London England, n.d.) 4.5" x 3.5", 8pp. pamphlet, stapled Tijuana bibles (also known as eight-pagers, bluesies, gray-backs, Jiggs-and-Maggie books, jo-jo books, Tillie-and-Mac books, and two-by-fours) were little pornographic comic books produced in the United States from the 1920s to the early 1960s.
  • Ah Loves 'ya 'Deer'", (np. nd.) 4.5" x 3", 8pp., pamphlet, stapled and taped Tijuana bibles (also known as eight-pagers, bluesies, gray-backs, Jiggs-and-Maggie books, jo-jo books, Tillie-and-Mac books, and two-by-fours) were little pornographic comic books produced in the United States from the 1920s to the early 1960s.
  • Alosie, ou Les Amours de Mme. de M. T. P. | Avec une notice historique sur Pierre Corneille Blessebois par Marc de Montifaud et Une très-belle eau-forte, Marc de Montifaud [pseud. Marie-Amélie Chartroule, Mme Quivogne de Montifaud] (Comité de Bibliophiles, London, 1880 [131/500 printed on Holland paper]) 7.5" x 5.25", 104pp, hardbound 1/2 leather, marbled boards and endpapers, gilt decorationson spine and leather corners, five raised bands on spine. Top edge gilt. Frontispiece engraving. #131 of 300 on Holland paper. Great condition for age. Initials "P.G." above frontispiece. Mme Quivogne de Montifaud (1845-50 to 1912/13) french writer and "free-thinker". She often dressed as her male pseudonym Marc de Montifaud. This book (published in London in 1880) is a reprint of part of the larger 17th century erotic work, "Amours des dames illustres de nostre siècle" (Loves of Illustrious Ladies of our Century) with an essay where Montifaud tries to unravel the authorship (usually the work is attributed to Pierre Corneille Blessebois). The author changes the original name to reflect that this is an autobiography of Madame de Montespan, the notorius mistress of Louis XIV. When originally published in Holland in 1878 (as "Lupanie, histoire amoureuse de ce temps") a court in Seine called it a moral outrage describing "licentious scenes on almost every page; told in a style revoltingly obscene". For publishing this book Montifaud was sentenced to 8 days in jail and fined 500 francs and ordered all copies of the book destroyed. The publisher was also fined 500 francs. This is a rare copy of a rare book in it's original "publishers leather".
  • Amatory Adventures of Sheik Mansour, A Master of the Art of Love, Hector France (Jul-Mar Press, 1932) 6 3/8 x 9 5/8", 249 pp, Stated, limited printing of 1000, but has no number. By Hector France, illustrated by Esaye Rabkin, this is a nice copy of this classic erotic novel. Book is a good used copy - cover is nice, has some rubbing to corners, overall age/use, as seen in the photo. Pages are all present and bound solid. Book has two 'Discarded' stamps, one at inside of the front cover, one at the title page. Has a damp stain along bottom margin of pages from front to page 19, small chip and tear at bottom of the title page. I see no other extraneous marks in this copy! Hector France (1837 - 1908) was a French author best known for his "orientalist" and flagellation tales. This is his risque tale of an Arab stud in action; a novel set around a Turkish harem. Translated by Alfred Allinson and reproduced from the Charles Carrington novel "The Chastisement of Mansour"
  • Amorous Ann, (Privately Printed for the Erotica Biblion Society, Paris, 1931) 32pp., pamphlet, good condition
  • Amorous Fiammetta, Giovanni Boccaccio, introduction by Edward Hutton, trans. & illus. various unknown. (Rarity Press, New York, 1931 ) 9.5" X 6.5", 356pp, Hardcover no DJ, red cloth boards, botton and fore edges deckled. Good condition for age, a fading on spine, silver gilt lettering and decorations Originally titled "Elegia di Madonna Fiammetta" (The Elegy of Lady Fiammetta), this marvelous European romance was written by Giovanni Boccaccio somewhere between 1343 and 1344.  It is a first-person confessional monologue narrated by a woman and is considered the first psychological novel in a modern language and a precursor of stream-of-consciousness fiction. Lady Fiammetta, recounts how, although a married woman, she falls in love with a handsome young foreigner named Panfilo and, becomes his lover. Panfilo subsequently abandons Fiammetta and returns to his native land, where his father is said to be dying. When he fails to keep his promise to return, Fiammetta, describes her longings, her anguish, and her despair. A host of contradictory sentiments drive her to desperation and to an unsuccessful suicide attempt. After a time, Fiammetta resumes her futile wait for Panfilo. She finally resolves to seek him out in his native land. Disguising her true intent from her husband, she secures his promise to help her in this undertaking. Addressing an exclusively female audience, Fiammetta warns them about the vicious ways of men. Her whole narrative adds up to an indictment of men as both readers and lovers. Fiammetta has been variously described as a pathetic victim of male cruelty; an irresponsible fool of a girl; a sophisticated, cunning, and wholly disingenuous female; and, finally, a genuinely modern woman. Whatever judgment we make of her, Fiammetta stands out among medieval women as an ardent and outspoken feminist. Sometime around 1330 Boccaccio fell in love and married his "Fiammetta" who most believe is Maria d'Aquino (?-1382), a royal bastard, an illegitimate daughter of Robert the Wise, King of Naples and Count of Provence. He wrote about her and their relationship in several of his literary works. She is traditionally identified as Fiammetta. According to him, Maria's mother was a Provençal noblewoman, Sibila Sabran, wife of Count Thomas IV of Aquino. She was born after Countess Sibila and King Robert committed adultery at his coronation festivities in 1310, but was given the family name of her mother's husband. Her putative father placed her in a convent. In 1345 she was an accomplice in the murder of King Andrew, the husband of her niece and Robert's successor, Queen Joanna I. For this Maria was sentenced to death and beheaded in 1382 on the orders of Queen Joanna I's successor, King Charles III.
  • An ESSAY ON WOMAN and other pieces printed at the private press in Great George-Street, Westminster, in 1763, and now reproduced in fac-simile from a copy believed to be unique. To which are added epigrams and miscellaneous poems now first collected., John Wilkes [authorship in dispute, also ascribed to Thomas Potter who may have assisted. Edited by J. C. Hotten and possibly H. S. Ashbee] (Privately Printed [probably James Camden Hotten], London, 1871 [reportedly only 250 were printed]) 9.5" X 7", xvi+263pp. Hardbound, original brown cloth, paper title on spine. Deckled edges. Very good condition for age, some yellowing here and there, corners bumped, binding good. Signed (owner?) with message on front pastedown. Sometime in 1755, John Wilkes, together with fellow rake and son of the Archbishop of Cantebury, Thomas Potter (c. 1718-1759), composed a bawdy set of parodied Alexander Pope poems entitled An Essay on Woman, a satirical imitation of Pope's An Essay on Man. In 1763 he was put in jail for political reasons ("seditious libel for his anti-Jacobite smearing which appeared in his 'radical' weekly publication"). Upon release, his home was unlawfully searched and proofs of his "Essay on Woman" was discovered. This book contains a facsimile of a reprint, as no original is known. Text of poems printed in red. A work anonymously edited by John Camden Hotten, contains doumentary evidence of great value, including the affidavit of Wilke's printer, Wilke's statement, and Warburton's speeches, as well as the offensive poems.
  • An Exact Reprint of the Roman Index Expurgatorius. The only vatican index of this kind ever published., Edited, with a preface, by Richard Gibbings, A. B., scholar of Trinity College, Dublin. (Milliken and Son, booksellers to the university; William Curry, Jun. and Co.; J. G. and F. Rivington, London, 1837) 4.25" x 6.75", 608pp, hardcover, red boards with gilt titles on spine, Index Expurgatorius title page in red and black, former library, library bookplate on front pastedown "The Reynolds Library, 1884", stamps "Literature Division", preface in english, text in latin, professionally repaired with binders tape This is an exact reprint of the Index Expurgatorius of 1608.  Aside from the extensive and scholarly preface written in English, the index itself is written in the original latin. The Index Expurgatorius is a list of books that the Roman Catholic Church forbade its members to read unless certain passages condemned as dangerous to faith or morals were deleted or changed. This is different from the Index Librorum Prohibitorum which was a list of publications deemed heretical, or contrary to morality and thus Catholics were forbidden to read. In 1571, a special congregation was created, the Sacred Congregation of the Index, which had the specific task to investigate those writings that were denounced in Rome as being not exempt of errors, to update the list of Pope Pius IV regularly and also to make lists of required corrections in case a writing was not to be condemned absolutely but only in need of correction; it was then listed with a mitigating clause (e.g., donec corrigatur (forbidden until corrected) or donec expurgetur (forbidden until purged)). Several times a year, the congregation held meetings. During the meetings, they reviewed various works and documented those discussions. In between the meetings was when the works to be discussed were thoroughly examined, and each work was scrutinized by two people. At the meetings, they collectively decided whether or not the works should be included in the Index. Ultimately, the pope was the one who had to approve of works being added or removed from the Index. It was the documentation from the meetings of the congregation that aided the pope in making his decision. This sometimes resulted in very long lists of corrections, published in the Index Expurgatorius, which was cited by Thomas James in 1627 as "an invaluable reference work to be used by the curators of the Bodleian library when listing those works particularly worthy of collecting".
  • Pierre Louys (Privately printed for Subscribers only, Paris, nd. [c. 1920] ) 9.25" X 6", xvi 412pp, hardbound in marbled simulated leather cloth, edges deckled. Very good condition.