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Milan 2017

Published on 02 March 2017

From Aldus to Zanichelli*...

...Italy has always had a flourishing book trade long before the advent of printing.  Italy’s history is closely linked to the history of the book, whether we look at the trade in manuscripts or the rapid development of printing presses in Renaissance Italy. Rome, Venice, Ferrara, Milan and Bologna produced more publications in the 15th century than France and Germany and dominated the European book market at that time.
Today Italy is still a lively market for modern as well as antiquarian and rare books.


The Italian Antiquarian Bookseller’s Association, ALAI, was set up 70 years ago in 1947 and represents 120 dealers throughout Italy. ALAI organized the ILAB Congress in Milan in 1953, in Ravenna in 1964, the 28th ILAB Congress together with the 11th International Book Fair 1986 in Venice, and the 39th ILAB Congress and 23rd International Antiquarian Book Fair in Bologna in 2010, along with Committee and Presidents’ Meetings in 1974 and 1999 in Turin and Florence.

For four consecutive years, ALAI has organized a successful antiquarian book fair in Milan. The city is known for its big fashion and banking enterprises and as the economic centre of Italy and the book fair benefits from that affluent clientele. It is also today’s centre for the modern book and publishing industry, with many large Italian and international publishers running their activities from Milan.

Italy’s long history in printing and printing presses, typography, writing, publishing and bookselling is mirrored in the wealth and quality of stock that is available at this Italian fair. Aimed at international as well as local customers, the book fair 'Libri Antichi e di Pregio a Milano’, will be held in Milan from March 24th to 26th, in the prestigious venue of Salone dei Tessuti. Thirty-seven exhibitors have confirmed their attendance at the fair so far, largely Italian booksellers but also dealers from the Netherlands and the UK.



A programme of events will be released shortly.

For more information about the fair, please visit the official fair website


5th Antiquarian Book Fair ‘Libri Antichi  e di Pregio a Milano’ 2017

24 - 26 March 2017
Salone dei Tessuti, Milano
Organised by the Associazione Librai Antiquari d'Italia (ALAI) 


For more information about the Italian rare book trade, please consult the Antiquarian Bookseller’s Association of Italy, ALAI.

If you have free time in Milan or are simply curious about the history of the city and its cultural highlights, visit the Tourism Milan website




*Zachinelli is a modern Italian publishing house, mainly known in Italy for the publishing of dicitionaries

Image source: Image 1&2 ALAI; Image 3 Bodleian Library Exhibition in 2015 

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