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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
Leonardo da Vinci's Library
Libraries

Leonardo da Vinci: reflected in his library

Published on 06 May 2019
Leonardo da Vinci was a tireless and inquisitive reader. He owned more than 200 books about science and technology as well as literary and religious topics. An exhibition organized by the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science and the Berlin State Library at the Museo Galileo in Florence sheds new light on the intellectual cosmos of the artist, engineer, and philosopher, who remains as fascinating as ever 500 years after his death.
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UCLA William Andrews Clark Memorial Library
Libraries

ILAB Congress visits newly opened William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, L.A.

Published on 30 Jan. 2018
UCLA's William Andrews Clarke Memorial Library, renowned for its collection of rare books and manuscripts from England’s Tudor period through the 18th century, including the world’s largest repository of materials related to Oscar Wilde, has just reopened after extensive renovations. Participants of the upcoming ILAB congress, will visit the library as part of the extensive congress programme.
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Libraries

"In Good Order But Poor Condition" - ILAB Patron of Honour Dr. Michael Knoche in F.A.Z.

Published on 02 Aug. 2017
The former director of the Anna Amalia Library in Weimar and ILAB Patron of Honour recently wrote in the Frankfurter Allgemeine newspaper about digitisation, book restoration and the state of Germany's libraries. "In Good Order But Poor Condition" is an interesting read about the importance of digitisation, but also about the need for research material not only to be available in digitised format.
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Libraries

Maps and the 20th Century : Drawing the Line

Published on 24 Jan. 2017
For some reason, I didn't get my customary invitation to the press preview of the latest British Library exhibition, "Maps and the 20th Century : Drawing the Line", when it opened towards the last year – perhaps it was something I said. No matter, it's still on for another six weeks or so – and I finally found some time to visit it a few days ago. I found it challenging, which is a good thing.
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Libraries

Radio Feature - Bayrische Regionalbibliotheken - in German language

Published on 09 Jan. 2017
Bayerns Bibliotheken sind weit mehr als nur Aufbewahrungsorte für Bücher. Sie sind geistige Tankstellen und gleichzeitig Orte der Begegnung. Darüber hinaus hat jede einzelne von ihnen neben ihrer ganz eigenen Geschichte unterhaltsame und spannende Geschichten zu erzählen, denen Birgit Fürst in ihrem einstündigen Zeit-für-Bayern-Feature nachspürt, das am 2. Weihnachtsfeiertag 2016 auf Bayern 2 ausgestrahlt wurde. Gleich zu Beginn der Sendung nimmt der Fotograf der Staatsbibliothek Bamberg, Gerald Raab, die Hörer mit in die Keller der Bibliothek, wo er wertvollste Handschriften digitalisiert. Direktorin Bettina Wagner lässt später die Büchersammlung des wittelsbachischen Herzogs Karl II. August von Pfalz-Zweibrücken in all ihrer Pracht vor dem geistigen Auge des Zuhörers erstehen. Schließlich erlebt der Hörer staunend, welch hohe Präzision und große Geduld Buchbinderin Regine Ullein beim Restaurieren alte Karten aufbringt.
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Collecting - The Father of California Viticulture’s Middle Child: Arpad Haraszthy & Wine Writing in California

In hindsight, we know Arpad Haraszthy was born to make wine. His father, Agoston Haraszthy (also known as "The Father of California Viticulture"), founded the Buena Vista Vinicultural Society in California after the 1857 establishment of his Buena Vista vineyard in Sonoma. Hungarian-American wine maker, writer and world traveler, Agoston Haraszthy moved to the United States in 1842 (when his son Arpad was only 2 years old), first settling in Wisconsin, there founding the first Wisconsin vineyards. A challenging endeavor, he gave up his attempts to grow grapes in the mid-west and moved his family to San Diego, California. Though he was active in political town-goings-on in San Diego, Agoston found he was once again disappointed in the local viticulture possibilities, and the family once more relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area, settling (this time for good) in Sonoma. To make a long (& mobile) story short, Agoston finally found what he was looking for in the Sonoma Valley. He and his family settled down. So Arpad Haraszthy grew up surrounded by wine aficionados (for example, Charles Krug was employed at the winery) – it seemed merely a matter of time before he himself entered the profession.
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Article

New publication by Chatwin Books (US) looks at today's book collecting

Indeed, “Books don’t just furnish a room,” Michael Dirda writes in Browsings. “. . . Digital texts are all well and good, but books on shelves are a presence in your life. As such, they become a part of your day-to-day existence, reminding you, chastising you, calling to you. Plus, book collecting is, hands down, the greatest pastime in the world.”
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Article

Collecting - Picaresque Authors from Cervantes to Bellow

"Picaresque" derives from the Spanish word "picaresca," which comes from "picaro" ("rogue" or "rascal"). Usually satirical, a picaresque novel follows the exploits of a hero, usually low born, who must survive by his wits as he travels about on various (usually unlooked-for) adventures. The roots of the genre can be traced all the way back to Rome, with works like Petronius' Satyricon and Apuleius' The Golden Ass. Although influential writers like Chaucer and Boccaccio certainly included elements of the picaresque in their writing, the first modern picaresque novel is Lazarillo de Tormes. It was published anonymously in Spain and Antwerp in 1554. Cervantes undoubtedly popularized the genre, which blossomed in the next two centuries all over Europe. Sterling examples Voltaire's hilarious Candide and Henry Fielding's The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling. Here's a look at other great authors who have contributed to the genre of the picaresque.
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Article

43d California Book Fair Coda: Happy Trails

A mysterious stranger appears at the 43d California International Antiquarian Book Fair and blesses exhibitors left and right by spending over one million dollars on Bibles. Astonishing, a marvel indeed, but not a supernatural event. Or was it?
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Article

The Professionalization of Library Theft

Travis McDade is Curator of Law Rare Books at the University of Illinois College of Law and author of the upcoming Thieves of Book Row: New York's Most Notorious Rare Book Ring and the Man Who Stopped It. The book will published by Oxford University Press in May 2013. In this article Travis McDade, who also teaches a class called "Rare Books, Crime & Punishment", writes about how stolen books can be identified and what book thieves do to prevent this.
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