“I felt strong enough to lift a mountain” declared Alexandre Dumas after a visit to Georgia in 1858.
Presidents of ILAB’s member associations certainly felt equally inspired after a week of meetings in the capital, Tbilisi.
LET ME TELL YOU A STORY. Well, it felt like a story at the time, and not without a whisper of magic. Celtic magic. Book collectors, after all, are irrepressible raconteurs. For every book in their collection, there is a backstory to spin. Here is one of mine:
The UK Guardian has picked up on one of the most significant archival discoveries of recent times; a first folio with hundreds of annotations by John Milton, possibly one of the most important literary discoveries of modern times.
Dieter Tausch (Innsbruck) has been elected new President at the annual meeting of the Austrian Antiquarian Booksellers' Assocation (Verband der Antiquare Österreichs, VAO). Michael Truppe (Graz) serves as vice-president. Michael Bauer (Vienna), Traugott Scheidtinger (Feldkirch) and Dr. Elisabeth Weinek (Salzburg) serve as members of the VAO Committee.
Stephanie Russo is a lecturer at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia. Her research is focused on the 18th and 19th century novel. Her new book, published by Hes & de Graaf, is a very good read, and a highly important work for everyone who is interested in the history of ideas, culture and society, and, in particular, in the history of women who did not only embroider cushions while waiting in the parlour for Mister Darcy, but who took their opportunities to change their situation and to influence their society by means of literature.
The literature of Christmas is vast, and any book collector seeking to create a Christmas-themed private library quickly realizes that difficult choices have to be made. Does one collect everything written about or influenced by this holiday? Does one focus only on non fiction books (origins, evolution, secular or religious aspects), fiction (not all of which is cheery), or both? Does one collect such books as a stand-alone theme, or as an adjunct to other collecting areas (folklore, religion, industrialization, childhood, illustration)? - This is a literary Christmas present by L. D. Mitchell and his famous blog The Private Library.
Travel lies are as old as literature itself, or perhaps even older. Sailors, the quintessential travellers, are well known for their sailor's yarns. And how better to impress the stay-at-homes than with stories of sea serpents, dwarfs, giants, headless or dog-faced people in faraway places? This was much more satisfying than telling of hard work, bad food and low pay.