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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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The ABA and the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers

Published on 27 March 2018
The ABA and ILAB look back at a long history. The ABA is relaunching its flagship fair in London this year, the oldest antiquarian book fair in the world, under the auspices of ILAB. This text by the late Anthony Rota, ABA bookseller and ILAB President of Honour, was published in 2008 in the ABA Directory.
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ILAB History

ILAB History

Published on 17 July 2013
Today the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers unites 22 national associations under one roof. Some of them had already been established when the League was founded in 1947/1948. Five of them were the driving forces: the antiquarian booksellers of Great Britain, France, Denmark, Sweden and The Netherlands.
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ILAB History

Preliminary Conference

Published on 17 July 2013
In 1947 representatives from Great Britain, France, Denmark, Sweden and The Netherlands met in Amsterdam for a Preliminary Conference. They discussed Hertzberger’s idea of forming an organization that counteracted the animosity and suspicion engendered by the Second World War. The new International League of Antiquarian Booksellers should foster friendship and understanding between the nations as the mutual basis for a fair and professional trade in the future.
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ILAB History

Copenhague 1948

Published on 17 July 2013
The ILAB was formally incorporated in Copenhagen in September 1948, with ten participating countries. Representatives from Belgium, Finland, Switzerland, and Italy joined their colleagues from Great Britain, France, Sweden, Denmark and The Netherlands at the conference table. Denmark was holding a proxy for Norway
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ILAB History

1951-1960

Published on 17 July 2013
“Considering the dubiety with which our activities were treated it is pleasant to record that the Congresses in London in 1949 and in Paris in 1950 were very successful both socially and professionally, while the standard of hospitality in both cities was impeccable." (Muir)
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ILAB History

1961-1970

Published on 17 July 2013
The admission of Japan, the ILAB Bibliography Prize (now ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography) and the first ILAB International Antiquarian Book Fair were the milestones of the 60s.
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1 - 8 / 25

From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Booksellers

Bruce Marshall's Pilgrim's Progress - An Interview with Beatie Wolfe

From vintage cars (how many rare book dealers drive an Aston Martin?) and guitars to Beslers, Blaeus and Goulds, Bruce Marshall, a major but discreet player in the colour-plate, natural history and travel book fields, reveals to Beatie Wolfe his pilgrim's progress through the rare book world.
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Booksellers

Living With - And From - Books, Part 7

"Up to the Eighties, personal computers were not existing yet, and we could not even begin to think of scanners: the texts, typed on cards with bolds or italics highlighted with a red or blue pencil, were formed by the printer with the linotype; the illustrations used to be reproduced on zinc cliché applied on thick wooden blocks to be placed in the typographical shapes. In the past few yeas, computerized instruments have made everything easier, but the research for a greater and greater bibliographical attention and a more sophisticated graphic elegance, has paradoxically lengthened the time to complete a paper catalogue, destined to be consulted for years as a bibliographic source. While the descriptions reserved to a search engine are less charming and long lasting, because of the ephemeral characteristics of the internet. The same purchasing dynamics have changed: the bibliophiles of the past used to prefer saving on long distance calls and ordering from our catalogues, using the "low postage bookseller's order form" or the already forgotten telex, and the telegraphic address "Preliber" is what we have decided to keep for our current web site." Catalogues in times of the internet: the final part of the Pregliasco story.
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Article

First Ever Meeting of the ILAB Committee - Copenhagen, September 3rd, 1948

In 1948 the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers was officially founded at the Conference in Copenhagen from 1st to 5th September. Plans were made, decisions were taken by the presidents of the ten national associations who became ILABs founding fathers. They also elected the first ILAB Committee: William S. Kundig, Percy H. Muir, Einar Gronholt Pedersen, Menno Hertzberger and André Poursin. As early as 3rd September their work began with the first ever ILAB Committee Meeting.
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Article

A Growing Antiquarian Book Market at the Hong Kong Antiquarian Bookfair

"Just think of me as a black hole into which you can throw offers of everything in this area and I will buy all I don't have".
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Article

Preserving Your Rare Books: Setting up and Maintaining Your Home Library

As a collector of rare books, your goal is to keep your collection in optimum shape. You're careful with dust jackets and protect fragile books with clamshell cases. Even the way you shelve your rare books can impact their condition. It's important that your home library provides the support and protection that rare books need.
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Article

Biographies of the Key Figures Involved in the Doves Press

Marianne Tidcombe about the lives of Thomas James Cobden-Sanderson, Harry Gage-Cole, Edward Johnston, John Henry Mason, Edward Philip Prince, and Emery Walker.
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