Sunday, April 16, 2017

A selection of titles for Easter, from Henry Bemis Books


Aland, Kurt, editor, Synopsis Quattuor Evangeliorum (Synopsis of the Four Gospels and the apocryphal gospels, from the parallel text 26th edition, Nestle-Aland Greek New Testament, Deutsche Biblestiftung Stuttgart 1976). ISBN 3-438-05130-3. Hardcover, as new, no dust jacket, gold title lettering on cover and spine. Kurt Aland (1915-1994) was an immensely influential New Testament scholar who founded the Institute for New Testament Textual Research to locate and compare as many variant ancient fragments of the New Testament to derive the closest possible composite of the original. An outspoken opponent of the East German postwar regime, he was harassed and hounded for a decade before he lost his teaching post and escaped to West Germany in 1958. Slight wear at the top right corner of the cover, where the plastic wrapper wore through. HBB price: $35.

Bailey, Albert Edward, The Gospel in Hymns: Background and Interpretations (Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1950, 1st ed., 1st printing, 1950). This is a sort of cookbook for hymn singing, carefully notated by Mary Ann Ogg (various marginalia, plus chapter indices, typed on onionskin, carefully mounted throughout. The book also bears the name of Chaplain William Neale Williams, longtime trustee of Toccoa Falls College, whom Ogg met and married when they were students at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Hardcover, very good condition. No dust jacket. Octavo, 600 pp. HBB price: $25.

Boyer, Rev. Harold B., History of Morgans Baptist Church, Moneta, Virginia, 1771-1971 (White Printing Co., 1st ed. 1971). Well-written and illustrated history of a Bedford County, Virginia church. Red boards with gilt lettering; some foxing on the front end papers. HBB price: $40.

Cahill, Thomas, The Gifts of the Jews: How A Tribe of Nomads Changed the Way Everyone Thinks and Feels (Nan A.Talese/Anchor Doubleday, 1st ed., 7th printing, 1998). ISBN 0-385-48249-3. Trade paperback. The second volume in his series, Hinges of History, this history tells how the Jewish people rethought the very concept of time, casting off the old endless wheel of birth, death and rebirth for a new, linear, and ultimately triumphant path to eternal life. Cahill is an inspired narrator of the first rank. This copy is inscribed by him on the title page. Very good condition. HBB price: 19.95.

Chase, Mary Ellen, The Psalms for the Common Reader (W.W Norton, 1st ed. 1st printing, 1962). LOC 62-8579. Chase (1887-1973), a Smith College professor the English Novel and the King James Bible from 1926 to 1955, was one of America’s best-loved mid century novelists. This book, aimed at the general reader, is a thoughtful, scholarly and graceful treatment of the sometimes confusing, contradictory collection that is The Psalms; it calls to mind the works of another scholar-popularizer of the time, Edith Hamilton. Fifty years on, it holds up well, and will give much pleasure and insight to readers. Hardcover clipped dust jacket showing some edge wear, good condition. HBB price: $12.99.

Dole, Elizabeth, Hearts Touched With Fire: My 500 Favorite Inspirational Quotations (Carroll & Graf, 1st ed., 2004). Bon mots collected by the NC native, former senator, cabinet officer, presidential candidate and American Red Cross president over her long career in public service. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, almost fine condition, 8” x 6”. Autographed on the title page at a Salisbury NC bookstore, February 19, 2005. HBB price: $15.

Ehrmann, Max, The Desiderata of Happiness: A Collection of Philosophical Poems (Crown Publishers, 1st ed., 7th printing, 1995). ISBN 0-517-70184-7. 37 poems by the lawyer and family meat packing and overalls company business executive (1872-1945) whose name soared to fame after the coincidental rediscovery of his 1927 prose poem, “Desiderata.” Through the 1960s and 70s it became a pop culture icon: Joan Crawford recited it; Leonard Nimoy recorded it. The elegant selection from his collected works (1948) gives a broader appreciation of the Indiana poet’s skills. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, very good condition. HBB price: $35.

Graham, Rev. Dr. Billy, Peace With God: How To Choose In The Hour of Decision, (Doubleday & Co, 1953, later reprinting). LOC 53-5967. An early work by the renowned evangelist, reissued after his famous 1957 New York Crusade that drew some 2m people. The book sold more than 2m copies and was re-issued in a revised version in 1984. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, very good condition, autographed. HBB price: $250.

Hagerty, Barbara Bradley, Fingerprints of God: The Search for the Science of Spirituality (Riverhead Books, 1st ed., 1st printing, 2009). ISBN 978-1-59448-877-1. NPR’s remarkable religion correspondent considers whether science can quantify faith, its exercise, and its effects. Exactly the sort of book all kinds of dogmatists should read, but won’t; more pleasure to those who do! Thoroughly researched, provocatively written. Unique in its scope. Hardcover unclipped dust jacket, remainder mark on bottom edge; very good condition. HBB price: $12.95.

Hamilton, Virginia, In the Beginning: Creation Stories from Around the World (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1st ed. 1st printing, 1988). ISBN 0-15-238740-4. A remarkable collection of 25 creation stories from cultures around the world, illustrated by the incomparable Barry Moser. 10.25” x 8.5”. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, very good condition. HBB price: $50.

Howard, Theodosia, Letters and Papers of the Late Theodosia A. Viscountess Powerscourt (Rev. Robert Daly, D.D., Rector of Powerscourt, afterwards Bishop of Cashel, etc., New Edition, G. Morrish, 20, Paternoster Square, London E.C., no copyright/publication date given). Preface by Rev. Daly, Powerscourt Glebe, April 1838). Theodosia Anne Howard (1800-36). Born in County Wicklow, Ireland, she accepted Christianity (some sources cite Rev. Daly as her mentor) at 19. Her cousin, wife of Richard Wingfield, Viscount Powerscourt, died in 1820; Theodosia married him in 1822, and he died a year later. In 1826 she attended a series of “prophetic meetings” in England, and began holding similar events at Powerscourt. In 1831 she turned them into a formal annual conference that ran until 1833. The prophetic movement was millennialist, driven by the idea that the turmoil of the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars marked the beginning of the End Times and presaged the return of Jesus Christ. This volume is a conspectus of her spiritual life, and includes papers presented at her Powerscourt Conferences. Her work has remained in print since her death. Hardcover, green cloth boards with gilt Gothic lettering. No dust jacket. Published in London by G. Morrish. Bookseller tag from Erie Bible Truth Depot, Erie, PA. Rare. HBB price: $300.

Hughs, Rev. G. Carswell, First Church Sermons 1972-1982 (First Presbyterian Church, Charlotte, NC, 1st ed., May 1982). Privately printed under a bequest by Beulah Wallace Grier, a member from 1899 to 1978. Thirty sermons from the first ten years ministry of a popular pastor. Hardcover, no dust jacket, privately printed, autographed. HBB price: $35.

Lamott, Anne, Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith (Pantheon, 1st ed., 1st printing, 1999). ISBN 0-679-4420-5. Essays on faith, and life’s off journey, by a truly unique writer. “I have this beautiful feminist friend named Nora,” Lamott begins the chapter titled, ‘Gypsies,’ “who once said, ‘I’ve been thinking about killing myself, but I want to lose five pounds first.” I was remembering this recently when I started liking a new guy…” Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, very food condition. Gift inscription on the front end papers; autographed by Lamott on the Pantheon logo page. HBB price: $34.99.

International Bible Students Association, Scenario of the Photo-Drama of Creation, Part 1 (no author given, copyright 1914). An interesting account of the Old Testament story, presented with short, episodic chapters copiously illustrated in the manner of film stills. 8.75” x 4.75 inches; hardcover, no dust jacket, elaborate embossed cover illustration.  Remarkable condition; rare. HBB price: $50.

Manser, Hugh, and McGrath, Alister, Packer, J.I., and Wiseman, Donald, Zondervan Dictionary of Bible Themes (Zondervan Publishing House, 1st ed., 1st printing, 1999). ISBN 0-310-20668-5. Over 2000 thematic articles cross-referencing themes, related topics, and Biblical texts. Comparable, the publisher says, to Nave’s Topical Bible. Hardcover, no dust jacket, printed front and back covers, very good condition. HBB price: $75.

March, Rev. Daniel, D.D., Walks and Homes of Jesus (Ziegler & McCurdy, 1866). A retracing of the Savior’s journey’s by the 19th century American minister (1819-1905). Hardcover, no dust jacket, dark green boards embossed with gold titles on spine and cover. Acceptable condition; some separation of spine from covers. HBB price: $25.20150423_084728.jpg

Marcus, Jacob R., Ph.D., The Rise and Destiny of the German Jew (Dept. of Synagogue and School Extension of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations, 1st ed., 1934). Hardcover, no dust jacket, octavo, 417 pp. An analysis of the political situation in Germany during the advent of Nazism. Very good condition. Inscribed by the author on the front paper. HBB price: $35.

Meadows, Denis, A Saint and A Half: The Remarkable Lives of Abelard and St. Bernard of Clairvaux (Devin-Adair, 1st ed. 1963) Hardcover, price clipped dust jacket, good condition. Rare historical study of these two important figures, with the imprimatur of the Bishop of Bridgeport, CT. Rare. HBB price: $125.


Montaldo, Jonathan, ed., Entering the Silence: Becoming a Monk and Writer, The Journals of Thomas Merton, Vol. 2: 1941-1952 (HarperSanFrancisco, 1st ed., 1st printing, 1996). ISBN 0-06-065476-7. A fascinating account by the young Merton of the years in which he withdrew to the contemplative life of a monastery, and at the same time, became a best-selling author with his spiritual autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, very good condition, HBB price: $27.95.

Moseley, J. Rufus, Manifest Victory: A Quest and A Testimony (Harper & Bros., 1947). Born in Elkin, NC, educated at Peabody, Mercer, Harvard and Heidelberg, Rufus Moseley (1870-1954) was a leading mid-20th century American Christian mystic. From 1910 he gave up his professorship at Mercer and spent the rest of his life living off the proceeds of his pecan grove near Macon, GA, and contributed an occasional column to The Macon Telegraph. He wrote two highly successful books; Manifest Victory is a sort of Augustinian confession. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, good condition, autographed. Rare. Inscribed to “Brother R.A. Taylor” in February 1950. HBB price: $150.

Dorothy L. Sayers, The Whimsical Christian: 18 Essays (Macmillan, 1st ed., 1978, first published as Christian Letters to a Post-Christian World, 1969). ISBN 0-02-606930-X. Remembered mostly for her Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries, Dorothy Sayers (1893-1957) also published a strong body of work in Christian apologetics. These pieces show her considering how, and why, to be a Christian in a modern, endlessly secularizing world. By turns thoughtful, inspiring and witty (how would a modern newspaper review the Gospel of St. John? What if we apply some Biblical criticism methods to a Sherlock Holmes tale?), these are real gems, deserving of a greater audience. Hardcover, price clipped dust jacket, very good condition. Some marginal text bracketing by a previous owner.  8.5” x 5.75”, 275 pp. HBB price: $39.95.


Pax, W.E., In the Footsteps of Jesus: A Pilgrimage to the Scenes of Christ’s Life (Putnam, stated 1st ed. 1970). LOC 78-90908. A striking visual and written evocation of the landmarks in the life of Christ, by the then-director of the Institute for Bible Research in Jerusalem. Hardcover, quarto, 231 pp. Silvered 16th century map of the Holy Land on the end papers; gift inscription on the half title. Unclipped dust jacket with edge wear. Otherwise, very good condition. Fine paper stock. HBB price: $25.

Smith, Huston, The Soul of Christianity: Restoring the Great Tradition (HarperSan Francisco, 1st ed., 2nd printing, 2005). Smith, a comparative religion scholar whose PBS series with Bill Moyers was a bit hit, produced this work at age 86. In it, he considers the evolution of the Christian church in its first millennium, and suggests lessons to be learned and applied in a world of aggressive secularism, media sensationalism, and the increasing inability of various offshoots of the faith to find any common ground. A remarkable summa of  lifetime of thought and scholarship. Hardcover, unclipped dust jacket, very good condition. HBB price: $14.95.

Wingard, E.A., Echoes and Other Poems (Newberry, SC: Lutheran Publication Board, 1899). Wingard (1849-1900) was ordained in the Lutheran Church in 1875 and called to St. Paul’s in Columbia, SC in 1887. He served in that pulpit until his death; this book was published the year before he passed away. 170 pp of poetry covering a variety of subjects, ranging from war to memoria, religious poems and hymns and a miscellany that includes his Ode on Laying the Corner-Stone Y.M.C.A. Building, Columbia,S.C.  Hardcover, red boards, no dust jacket. Very good condition. HBB price: $25.

Wright, N.T., Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense (HarperSanFrancisco, 1st ed., 7th printing, 2006). ISBN 13-978-0-06-050715-2. The retired Anglican bishop of Durham, England is a very conservative, orthodox, fellow. But he co-authored a book with the late Marcus Borg- about as far across the table as one can get- and Henry likes that in authors. Beyond that, Wright, who, has taught at Oxford and Cambridge, is an engaging, articulate writer who makes his case for the relevance of faith. This isn’t an investment collectible; it’s an ideas collectible. It will provoke and challenge. Hardcover, dust jacket, very good condition. HBB price: $14.99

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