“at once the best book ever written on democracy and the best book ever written on America.” - Harvey Mansfield on Democracy in AmericaTOCQUEVILLE, ALEXIS DE
(English) De la Democratie en Amerique. Paris: Charles Gosselin, 1835, 1840
FIRST EDITIONS. The most influential commentary on America in the nineteenth century, Democracy in America was based on Tocqueville’s travels in the United States in 1831 and 1832. Tocqueville came to America to study the American prison system on behalf of the French government. The book resulting from these investigations is generally considered the 19th century’s most insightful commentary on the development of our unique American culture and political system.
(English) Leviathan, or the Matter, Forme, & Power of a Common-Wealth Ecclesiasticall and Civill.. London: for Andrew Crooke, 1651
First edition of Hobbes’s Leviathan, a classic of political philosophy and social contract theory. “This book produced a fermentation in English thought not surpassed until the advent of Darwinism.
VON NEUMANN ,JOHN, ET AL
(English) Ergebnisse eines mathematischen Kolloquiums, unter Mitwirkung Kurt Gödel und George Nobeling. Herausgegen von Kurt Menger. Heft 1-8.. Leipzig & Berlin: B. G. Teubner and F. Deuticke, [1931-1937].
A rare complete run of first editions of the proceedings of the celebrated Vienna Colloquium.
“worthy to be placed among the most beautiful books that the hand of man has produced” – London Times on the Szyk HaggadahSZYK, ARTHUR
(English) The Haggadah. London: Beaconsfield Press, 
FIRST EDITION of the greatest Haggadah of the 20th century, finely printed in color on vellum, one of only 250 numbered signed copies. The entire edition of the celebrated Szyk Haggadah, was printed on vellum and signed by both Szyk and Roth. The trade edition did not appear until 1956.
(English) Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
FIRST EDITION, type B, the definitive authorized version. Observing in his opening words that “man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains,” Rousseau offered this work as a yardstick with which to judge existing governments. He argued that the central problem is to “find a form of association which can defend and protect with all the power of the community the person and possessions of each associate, and by which each person unites himself with all, but only obeys himself and thereby remains as free as before.”
“the first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying” - land as private property, a new era in capitalismBENESE, RICHARD
(English) This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande, as Well of Woodlande, as of Lande in the Felde and Comptynge the True Nombre of Acres of the Same. [edited by Thomas Paynell.]. Southwark: James Nicolson, [1537 or 1538?]
FIRST EDITION of “the first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying” (Buisseret, Monarchs, Ministers, and Maps). The book focused on practical methods calculating everything from the amount of stone needed to pave a chamber floor to the size of a pasture or field” marking “the beginning of a new interest in measuring not just the assets of the land, but the land itself” (D. K. Smith, Cartographic Imagination in Early Modern England).
(English) On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures. London: R. Clay for Charles Knight, 1832
First edition. LARGE-PAPER COPY, presentation copy inscribed by Babbage to Sir Robert Peel, one of the leading British politicians of the day.
(English) Scientific manuscript of a course of studies at Collège de la Trinité, Lyon. Lyon, 1660s
This fascinating 17th-century scientific manuscript documents the state of scientific knowledge and education in France in the years following Galileo’s trial and the Church’s prohibition of Copernican theory.
“Every man has a certain sphere of discretion which he has a right to expect shall not be infringed by his neighbours. This right flows from the very nature of man.”GODWIN, WILLIAM
(English) Enquiry Concerning Political Justice and Its influence on General Virtue and Happiness. London: Robinson, 1793
FIRST EDITION. In Political Justice, his most famous work, Godwin responds to Burke’s attacks on the French Revolution and Thomas Paine. He applies the principles of the Revolution to inquire into the philosophical basis of government. Believing that political and social institutions are tyrannical and corrupt, Godwin calls for reason to guide human affairs and advocates individual liberty.