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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Booksellers

110 Degrees of Archer City

Published on 03 Sept. 2012
As the roaming gangs of reporters, videographers, bloggers, and other media mavens have already made abundantly clear, Larry McMurtry held a two-day book auction – maybe more accurately, he held an event – in order to clear three of the four buildings in Archer City, Texas that he has packed full of the carefully selected better used and medium rare books that he has amassed in over a half century of bookscouting.
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Booksellers

The Best Lack All Conviction. Part 1

Published on 17 July 2012
For some reason (and this is what I'm thinking about, not how people don't understand me and I must run off and play some Smiths), people are happy, ecstatic even to buy a car, or a watch, or a vase or a pair of shoes for enough money to feed me for six months … but when they look at a book; they don't see it. It doesn't say "You want me. I'm your treasure." It doesn't make them not want to eat for six months so they can own it ... Apart from feeling like I'd failed slightly, as if I'd somehow let down my vocation by not being able to represent it properly (a recurring theme), it occurred to me that my world is an arrogant one in many respects. Rare book people can often be like teenagers in love, they'll burn the world down for the objects of their desire. Which made me ask; why? Why are we like this?
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Bibliographies - Miniature Books

Online: The Charlotte M. Smith Collection of Miniature Books - Miniature Books Exhibition and Catalogue - UNT Libraries Digital Collections - 4000 Years of Miniature Books IU Lilly Library Exhibition
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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Penned in Prison for The Private Library

Here's an interesting idea for a private library: collect nothing but titles that have been penned by prisoners. If you think such a book collection might contain mostly accounts of prison life, think again ... some of the world's greatest, as well as some of the most influential, literature ever written was penned by prisoners.
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Article

Heimito von Doderer - The Austrian National Library buys important autographs

The Austrian National Library has bought 44 letters by the poet Heimito von Doderer which were written to Dietrich Weber, a famous scholar in German literature and a life-long specialist of Doderer's works. These letters were the beginning of a close friendship between the scholar and the novelist.
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Article

Rare Book Cafe: A program for book lovers

We participated in an interesting project on Wednesday – the live broadcast of a conversation between book dealers in different parts of Florida on a new program called Rare Book Cafe. Although we had a formidable task before us – packing for the Brooklyn Books Art Photos and Design Expo – this little interlude on Wednesday afternoon was kind of fun, and a welcome respite. The project is sponsored by the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair, and is intended to serve as an online meeting place for people in the rare book trade and people who can't get enough of antiquarian books, who thrive on absorbing as much information as possible about them. You know who you are.
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Article

How James Boswell Revolutionized Copyright Law

Born on October 29, 1740 James Boswell is best remembered for his momentous Life of Johnson. Often regarded as the most important biography written in the English language, Boswell's masterpiece is certainly an incredible contribution to the world of literature and books. But during his own lifetime, Boswell was much better known for another contribution: his role in the establishment of new copyright law for the United Kingdom.
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Article

Collecting Baedeker Travel Guides

Baedeker's travel guides were the premium travel guides of the second half of the 19th and the first part of the 20th century, giving rise to the verse: "Kings and governments may err – but never Mr. Baedeker." They are keenly collected, and some of them are extremely rare, like the famous and seldom seen "Athen" Baedeker from 1896, which was not sold outside Greece.
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