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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Press Articles

Bibliomaniacs in Battersea

Published on 08 June 2018
“Palpable history”, says Sir David Attenborough. We are at the annual Antiquarian Booksellers Association Rare Books Fair, and he is describing the pleasure of holding an incunable – a book printed in the fifteenth century, in the first few decades after the printing press was invented.
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Press Articles

In the Press - How James Bond books have soared in value ahead of Spectre

Published on 18 Sept. 2015
The Telegraph: "Collectors' demand for rare, first-edition Ian Fleming books has spiked in recent weeks ahead of the release of the 24th James Bond film, Spectre. New Bond films never fail to spark fresh interest in Fleming's books and James Bond memorabilia. And the value of some of the most sought-after pieces has risen steadily. Rare-book seller Peter Harrington said Ian Fleming's books had been consistently strong sellers over the past 50 years, but became even more sought-after when new films were released."
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Press Articles

Peter Harrington Rare Books Featured on BBC News: Charles Dickens inscribed book offered for £275,000 sale

Published on 20 Aug. 2014
"A signed copy of Charles Dickens' novel A Tale of Two Cities bearing a personal inscription to fellow author George Eliot has gone on sale for £275,000. Dated December 1859, the dedication expresses "high admiration and regard" for Eliot - real name Mary Ann Evans. It is being sold by rare book dealer Peter Harrington and is currently on show at its central London bookshop. If it reaches its asking price, the book will be among the most expensive Dickens works ever purchased." Read the whole story on BBC News.
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Press Articles

On the Blog - Provenance in Pictures: Tracking the Ownership of Three Early Printed Books

Published on 27 May 2014
"Last week a group of Melbourne bibliophiles were treated to a delightful talk by preeminent bookman Nicolas Barker, editor of The Book Collector since 1965, and whose bibliography records an impressive 1,000+ entries. Barker examined twenty or so works from Special Collections and talked to the salient points of each book. This post highlights three of the selected items that had multiple signs of ownership, all of which caught Barker's eye."
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Press Articles

Shakespeare’s Beehive - Rare Book Dealers George Koppelman and Daniel Wechsler claim to have found Shakespeare's dictionary

Published on 28 April 2014
George Koppelman and Daniel Wechsler, both ABAA members and ILAB affiliates, have now published a study about their extensive researches: In Shakespeare's Beehive: An Annotated Elizabethan Dictionary Comes to Light, they conclude that the annotations in their copy of Baret's Alvearie purchased on eBay belong to William Shakespeare. Using example after example, the authors demonstrate how closely the annotations and Baret's text are tied to Shakespeare's own work. The annotator, while not once leaving his name on a page, nevertheless leaves behind an astonishing personal trail of fingerprints. This great discovery hit the news last week. A press review:
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Press Articles

In the Press - Collector and Bookseller: A Vanishing Relationship?

Published on 06 March 2014
"It's a cliché, but it's true: Things aren't the same as they used to be. Over the last twenty-five years, we've transformed the way that we buy books and build our collections, and most of the familiar bookshops, old and new, have disappeared. There aren't nearly as many local places to browse and buy books as there once were, but there are more books available to buy than ever, and great collections are still being formed. But collectors and booksellers have lost something along the way, and it's important to recognize that just as Frank Bruni's favorite restaurants offer something that he can't get anywhere else, this is what the book market, at its best, used to do, and still sometimes does." A thoughtful article about rare book dealers and collectors by Joel Silver for Fine Books & Collections. Read it!
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Booksellers

Heinrich Eisemann (1890-1972) – Antiquarian Booksellers in Exile –

He was one of the great antiquarian booksellers and widely known as “Mister Ten Per Cent”.
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Article

ILAB Pop UP Book Fairs - A Message from ILAB President Norbert Donhofer

ear organizers and visitors of the ILAB Pop Up Book Fairs, dear colleagues and friends, It is now less than 36 hours before the ILAB Pop Up Book Fairs will start in Australia, and some thirty Pop Up fairs will follow around the globe before this event ends on the west coast of the United States. I take this opportunity to thank you very much indeed for joining us on April 23, 2015. You have created some unbelievable and impressive ideas to celebrate this day: from a woolshed in Dunkeld to a boat, shipping along the "Grachten" of Amsterdam, a whole street in Groningen, and a Brew-Pub in Portland, Oregon, and so many more brilliant ideas! There are two main reasons why ILAB had invented this series of Pop Up Fairs on UNESCO World Book and Copyright Day: one reason is that we have the feeling that we have to show our profession to the public, to make antiquarian bookselling more visible! I would therefore ask you to talk to as many people as possible, distribute catalogues, and tell the public about rare, valuable, and second-hand books, maps and prints.
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ILAB History

1981-1990

By the 1980s the biennial congresses were attracting several hundred delegates. A certain amount of business gets transacted (the subjects cropping up most frequently being standards of collation, the training of new entrants to the trade, and relationships with the auction houses). Its harsher critics say that the League is only a talking-shop – and it is true that the social side of congress life is very pleasant, the national association sponsoring each congress taking great care to mount an interesting programme.
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Booksellers

Edith Finer

People always assume I got into law books because my husband was a lawyer. Actually I studied economics, took a diploma in social sciences and trained as a juvenile probation officer. In those days you had to be twenty-six before you could do that job. As I was too young at the time, I decided to start a research agency. I was already married with children and it was just about possible to combine the work with running a home.
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Article

Final report from Stuttgart 2017 - See you again next year from 26 - 28 January 2018!

The final report from the 2017 Stuttgart International Antiquarian Book Fair has just been published by the German Booksellers Association VdA (Verband der Antiquare). Ein derart tolles Angebot wie in diesem Jahr hätte es auf der Antiquariatsmesse schon länger nicht mehr gegeben, schwärmte ein Sammler, der gleich bei mehreren Ausstellern fündig geworden war. Ähnlich positiv äußerten sich viele der Besucherinnen und Besucher, die beinahe ebenso zahlreich wie in den Vorjahren durch die Gänge flanierten und die Exponate bewunderten: Autographen studierten, in Erstausgaben blätterten oder über den Erwerb von dekorativer Grafik grübelten.
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Article

A day out for the rare book trade - St. Bride

We're planning a really festive and utterly splendid day out for the book trade on Thursday 13th December – an afternoon of activity, followed by the legendary ABA Christmas Party (none of this restricted to ABA members). The venue is to be the St. Bride Foundation in Blackfriars – and what a fine choice it is. The First Lady and I were there the other day for a preview of what's in store, at the invitation of the Chief Executive of the Foundation, the very amiable Glyn Farrow. Most booksellers are in thrall with their work, of course, but how nice to meet someone else so enthusiastic, so energetic and so palpably in love with his.
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