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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 21 July 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 21 July 2018
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 21 July 2018
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 21 July 2018
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 21 July 2018
“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 21 July 2018
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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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Collecting European Books on China

Books about China took educated Europe by storm in the 16th and 17th centuries. One of the earliest significant works is Dell'historia della China by Juan González de Mendoza, published in 1586. The Jesuit contribution to European understanding of China is impossible to over estimate ...
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Article

41st ILAB Congress & 25th ILAB International Antiquarian Book Fair - Official Welcome by ILAB President Norbert Donhofer

Paris for the 41st ILAB Congress, preceded by the 25th ILAB International Antiquarian Book Fair and coinciding with the centenary of the Syndicat Français de la Librairie Ancienne et Moderne (SLAM). In his welcome speech ILAB President Norbert Donhofer traced the lines of SLAM's history, which is the second oldest antiquarian booksellers' association worldwide and one of the biggest and most influential organizations of the rare book trade.
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Booksellers

Bernard Amtmann (1907-1979) – Antiquarian Booksellers in Exile –

The seizure of power by the Nazis in 1933 was a decisive event in the world of book collecting. Numerous dealers and collectors – among them the most famous of the trade – were murdered by the Nazis. Those who survived were forced to close their companies and to hand them over to the Nazis.
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Article

Collecting - Serendipity and The Private Library

I visited a little antiquarian shop in Weesp (not far from Amsterdam) to do a little browsing. After half an hour I was done and ready to leave. I was taking a last look at the shop's shelf of House of Orange books (books about the Dutch Royal House) when my eye was drawn to a book with an interesting but untitled spine. The book turned out to be a catalog of an exhibition of portraits and objects relating to the House of Orange-Nassau on the occasion of the inauguration of Her Majesty Queen Wilhelmina (1898).
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Article

Bibliographies - Pseudonyms

Online: Michael Holzmann und Hanns Bohatta, Deutsches Pseudonymen-Lexikon
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