Sunday, April 13, 2014

This Week In Bookplates April 13th, 2014

Mystery Bookplate Artist M.R

Does anyone out there recognize the artist M.R. ?

Can anyone out there translate the hieroglyphics ?

4/14/2014 A.K.Eyma was kind enough to submit the following:

The first plate reads IMO:

(1) "Chief Justice P(e)yer [i.e. Pierre]"
(2) "son of K(e)rabites [i.e. Crabites]"
(3) "(and) his wife, his beloved, mistress of the house,"
(4) "Sharlut [i.e. Charlot(te)],"

(5) "her beautiful name [ca. nickname] (is) Lutty [i.e. Lotte/Lotty]"

Thanks to Charles Ellwood Jones I also have these translations from his colleagues:

Dear Lew,

I have had a couple of responses to your query

1) Filip Taterka, Adam Mickiewicz University (Poland) 

The first bookplate reads: “(1) Judge Pierre (2) son of Crabitès (and) (3) his beloved wife, lady of the house, (4) Charlotte (5) whose beautiful name is Tety” (I am not sure the proper transcription of the wife’s beautiful name – I guess it is her birth name that is meant here).

The second one reads:

“(vertical text:) The testament of
(the horizontal text):  (1) the judge Borat (or Burat?) (2) son of Fish (3) born of lady of the house Sera (or Sara?), (4) daughter of Lee (or Ruy?) who was who is (or was) (5) the herald to the Majesty of the (6) king of Upper and Lower Egypt (Faruq)|, living forever”.

2) Thomas Schneider, 
University of British Columbia 

The Judge Pierre,
Son of Crabites,
his beloved wife and Lady of the House
her nick name being Lotti

Second bookplate:
The Judge Burt
Son of Fish
Made (Born) by the Lady of the House Sara (Zera)
Daughter of Loui. He is (was)
Messenger to the Majesty of
the king of Upper and Lower Egypt Furuq, may he live eternally

Peter Der Manuelian just supplied the missing piece of the puzzle, the artist's name

"Nice to see these bookplates. The translations by my colleagues below are essentially correct, though the second one is Bert Fish.
Both of these people were friends of George Andrew Reisner (1867-1942), who led the Harvard University—Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition from 1905 to 1942, when he died at the Giza Pyramids. The bookplates were drawn by his daughter Mary Reisner at Giza (died 1963), whom he taught Egyptian, before she went off to write trash novels after her years in Egypt. That’s what the “MR” stands for, Mary Reisner.

"Judge Pierre Crabitès was born in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana, 17 February 1877. Like so many in New Orleans, Pierre Crabitès was a Creole. His father was a wealthy French immigrant, and his mother was a Virginian. Crabitès grew up without want, attending the best private schools and universities that New Orleans had to offer. His family connections helped him when President Taft nominated Crabitès to a seat on the Mixed Courts of Egypt in 1911, and he sat on the bench in Cairo for the next twenty-five years, rendering decisions on many important cases, including the case for the sequestration rights to the tomb of the Pharaoh Tutankhamen. His career as a judge on the Mixed Courts coincided with a period of British dominance over Egypt, and his anti-British sentiments thus evolved during his stay in Egypt.
Several accidents led Crabitès to take up writing as a hobby. He published many book sand articles, and these works exhibit the environment in which he grew up and his anti-British opinions. These anti-British feelings ultimately barred his appointment to the Mixed Courts’ Court of Appeals and later hindered his work for the OSS.
After serving on the Mixed Courts for twenty-five years, Crabitès took up a post lecturing on law at Louisiana State University. When not busy teaching, Crabitès spent much of his time giving speeches on popular subjects in the 1930s, such as politics and the war. President Roosevelt appointed Crabitès as the American delegate to the Montreaux Convention, which resolved to slowly phase out the Mixed Courts. Crabitès finally realized his goal of obtaining a foreign service post when he accepted a job working for the OSS and Colonel Bill Donovan; however, his anti-British sentiments continued to haunt him when he returned to the Middle East, and he was subsequently transferred from Egypt to Iraq. Unfortunately, Crabitès died soon after his arrival in Iraq on 10 October 1943,in "Baghdad"

I've always liked leather bookplates .They are elegant.Unfortunately they also damage books..
Here is one I recently purchased. It is unusual to find a punning leather bookplate
.Mr. Crane was affiliated with the D.Van Nostrand Publishing firm.
"Following the death of David Van Nostrand in 1886, the Van Nostrand family turned the management, and probably the ownership, of the company over to the Crane family in 1888. The last Crane family member to manage the firm was Edward M. Crane, Jr., who managed the firm from 1964 until 1968, the year the Van Nostrand firm was acquired by Litton Industries and merged with Reinhold. Edward Crane, Jr. was the last of four Crane family members to have managed the firm from 1888 until 1968."

If you have any leather bookplates for sale or trade please contact me.

At The Huffington Post they featured many attractive and affordable bookplates from a number of designers
                             .Are you one of many who keep meaning to get a bookplate?
Stop procrastinating.
Follow this link.

Over at the ABEBOOKS Blog they recently featured twenty booksellers who blog.
You can see the entire posting here;

I searched each of the blogs to locate those which featured something about bookplates and I came of with these three 

Any Amount of Books- featured  a Paul Klee bookplate ( among others)

Link to Any Amount of Books bookplate postings:

Cabin Fever Books featured a charming bookplate by Karl Newson
You can contact the Mr. Newson directly at this email address:

Hang Fire Books-They Depicted many bookplates I liked. 
Here is one of them:


Anonymous said...

Translation of the Egyptian Bookplates:

1) Chief Justice Pierre / son of Crabitès / his wife whom he loves, the mistress of a house / Charlotte / her nickname Lottie.

2) The testament of / the Chief Justice Burt / son of Fish, / which is made for the mistress of a house Sarah / daughter of Lee. He is / the messenger to the majesty of / the King of Upper and Lower Egypt Farouk, living forever.

Anonymous said...

First book plate:

In the scribe's hands: "From the library (of)"
Main text: "The judge, Pierre, son of Crabitès, and his beloved wife, Lady of the House [standard Egyptian feminine title], Charlotte, whose nickname is Lottie"

Second book plate:

In the scribe's hands: "From the library of"
Main text: "The judge, Burt, son of Fisher, born of the Lady of the House, Sara, daughter of Ray. He was an envoy (lit. "messenger") to the Majesty of the King of Egypt, Farouk, may he live eternally."

In both examples, the family names are rendered as patronymics (i.e. "Burt son of Fisher" = "Burt Fisher"), just as in Arabic.

David Klotz
Postdoctoral Research Associate, Egyptology
Yale University

Steve Harvey said...

The top bookplate says" Judge Pierre, Son of Crabites, His beloved wife, the Lady of the House Charlotte, her "good name" (AKA nickname) Lotty.

Anonymous said...

For the translation of the 2 "egyptological" Bookplates :

For the first one,
« In the Library (of) the judge Pierre, son of Crabitès (= Pierre Crabitès), and his beloved wife, lady Charlotte, called Lotty (?) »

For the second one :

"In the Library of the Judge Bert, son of Fish (= Bert Fish), born from the lady Sarah, daughter of Lee (= Sarah Lee), who is a Messager (= ambassador) by the Majesty of the King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Farouk, eternally ».

I suppose from the Library of Bert Fish (1875-1943), US Ambassador in Cairo (1933-1941).


Dr Ivan Guermeur

Anonymous said...

Here is a translation of the hieroglyphic plates:

1st plate
The text held by the man reads:
«which is in the library» (i.e. «ex-libris»)
The main text reads:
« The judge Pyr (i.e. «Pierre»), son of Krbtis (i.e. «Crabitès»), whose loved wife is the house mistress Sharlt (i.e. «Charlotte»), whose beautiful name is Rwtyt (i.e. «the she-lion»).»

2nd plate
Before the scribe:
«which is in the library of»
Main text:
«The judge Bwrt (i.e.?), whose son is Yshin (i.e.?), son of the house mistress Sra (i.e. «Sarah»), daugther of Ly, when he was in mission with the majesty of the king of Upper and Lower Egypt, Farouq, may he lives eternally.»

I hope it helps,