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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Libraries

Austrian Books Online

Published on 16 June 2010
The Austrian National Library is going to digitise its complete holdings of historical books from the 16th to the 19th century –one of the five internationally most important historical book collections.
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Libraries

The Memory of Mankind. The Story of Libraries since the Dawn of History

Published on 17 Feb. 2010
After the Renaissance, libraries found themselves faced with the task of solving hitherto unknown problems of internal organization; and again after the Enlightenment had produced the type of the scholarly reference library, the nineteenth century found itself harried by a series of grave new problems of organization. As the Renaissance was ushered in, large numbers of books had been transferred to new owners, and this took place at the beginning of the Enlightenment to an even greater degree. In the earlier age the Reformation had provided the impetus; now it was the French Revolution.
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Libraries

The National Library of Ireland - James Joyce and Oliver St. John Gogarty

Published on 28 Dec. 2009
Thomas W. Lyster had been director of the National Library of Ireland since 1895. He was famous for his researches about Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and translated H. Düntzer's biography about the German poet into English. Lyster edited the anthology ‚English Poems for Young Students' – and became a key figure in the most important 20th century novel: "Ulysses", by James Joyce. In his article for the German "Literaturblatt", Rainer Pörzgen describes the library and its characters, and compares fiction with reality.
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Libraries

A Tale of Illusion, Delusion and Mystery: Booksellers and Librarians

Published on 14 Dec. 2009
We are gathered here tonight surrounded by books — raise your eyes and you will see five storeys of books and there are many more thousands (millions, I guess), hidden in rooms below us. Where did they all come from? Many of you could be forgiven for suspecting that they all came from unwary collectors like yourselves, who made the mistake of having dinner with Richard Landon and ended up changing your wills, or simply finding the next day that your books were now owned by the University of Toronto. But even Richard Landon couldn't come up with this many books so if we are to have some understanding of how an institution like this gets all these books, we must look elsewhere. Let me solve the mystery for you; they come from people like me — booksellers ...
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Libraries

A Talk at the Library of Congress

Published on 26 Nov. 2009
The relationship between collectors and libraries, which sounds as if it should be simple, has a way of becoming complex. Consider the following story, with the names omitted to protect the innocent. A well-known collector gave his books and manuscripts to a large university library.
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55 - 59 / 59

From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Notes from Sydney - The ILAB Internship in Australia from October to December 2011

Here I am reporting from sunny Sydney where I am highly enjoying my ILAB internship. I am a student at the Moscow State University of Printing Arts where I participate in the courses about the antiquarian book trade held by professor Olga Tarakanova. My internship is part of the program which is organized by the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers to give a hand to young booksellers like me to get in touch with foreign colleagues. So I got lucky to go to Australia, and I want to write about my experiences here in the form of brief posts to keep you informed about what is going on down under!
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Booksellers

If there is a heaven for rare books, it's like Serendipity Books - A Wake For The Still Alive: Peter B. Howard

"There are rare books all the way up to the ceiling, so absurdly far up (like 27 feet or something) that they are almost guaranteed to never come down. In addition to the shelves, both fixed and (apparently) movable, there are piles of books. Everywhere. There are paper bags and paper bags and paper bags filled with books, on the floor and in the aisles, and there are cabinets filled with prints and folios and ephemera and beetles and god knows what else..." "This is the single most amazing place I have ever been! When I dream about getting lost in a maze of forgotten books... this is what it looks like."
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Article

The American Antiquarian Society, 1812-2012: A Bicentennial History

Philip F. Gura's brilliant new book traces the development of the American Antiquarian Society library and the role its librarians have played as collectors, scholars of American writing and publishing, and stewards of the nation's history. Published on the occasion of the Society's bicentennial in April 2012. Distributed by Oak Knoll Press.
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Article

Glub

In the week leading up to this year's New York International Antiquarian Book Fair, and its two "shadow" fairs, I'd been in a state of preternatural excitement. Two promoters - Marvin Getman of Impact Events Group and John and Tina Bruno of Flamingo Eventz – were going head to head for supremacy in the satellite book fair market. First Getman crashed the Bruno's turf by scheduling a rival New York shadow show, then the Brunos trumped Getman by moving their shadow show to a new location just across Lexington Ave. from the big show at the Park Avenue Armory. Cold war ensued. It began to get nasty, and I became increasingly excited by the steady stream of blog fodder. There could not be two more different promoters – in terms of personality, management style, and business practices – than Getman and the Brunos. By last Friday night I'd half convinced myself that their collision would result in a black hole of such magnitude that the entire trade would be sucked behind an unbreachable event horizon, allowing us all to go home and rake our lawns. But something else happened. Or maybe I should say nothing happened.
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Article

Tokyo International Antiquarian Book Fair 2010

From March 11th to 13th, 2010, the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of Japan (ABAJ) invites dealers and bibliophiles to the Tokyo International Antiquarian Book Fair. More than 30 exhibitors from Japan and overseas show treasures from the history of printing at the Izumi Garden Gallery, among them Bondi Books, Boston Book Company, Dieter Schierenberg, Kikuo Bookshop, Michael Steinbach, Oriens Librairie, Peter Harrington, Rob Rulon-Miller, Sims Reed, Cornstalk Bookshop, Isseido Booksellers, Tuttle Special Collections, and Yushodo.
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Article

How to Identify Rare Books and First Editions - Surrender the Ship?

How to identify a rare book? "I got stumped last week, trying to catalog a book I'd recently purchased. It was the first full length biography of the American naval hero James Lawrence, and it was supposed to be 244 pages long. However, my copy seemed complete at page 240, which ended with the word "finis." I must've spent an hour pouring through my reference books trying to reconcile the discrepancy. I had a dim recollection of the pagination issue being explained to me by the gentleman from whom I'd purchased the book. But I couldn't remember the details, and I couldn't piece it together from the bibliographies ..."
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