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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
 
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Collecting

Collecting Rare Books - and Ephemera: Dandruff Piles

Published on 02 April 2012
Books sit squarely on shelves. They are discrete, replicable units. They have titles, authors, and places and dates of publication. They organize nicely into classes – "fiction" and "non-fiction," for example. There is agreed-upon language to describe condition, and there are bibliographical references that talk about the history and physical makeup of a book.
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Collecting

Open The Pod Bay Doors, Hal!

Published on 02 April 2012
If there's one thing you can guarantee it's that the minute you think you're being smart is the minute before you meet someone much smarter. One of the reasons I love my job so very, very much is that my minutes of being smart never last long enough to knock my self image out of whack. If I'm not meeting a customer whose breadth of knowledge and devotion has the least admirable parts of me reaching for a pitchfork and a torch then it's one of my colleagues who is making me wish I could eat their head and consume their wisdom entire.
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Collecting

Why You Collect? Why I Collect. Why I Oughta… A Day With Comic Art Collector Warren Bernard

Published on 13 Oct. 2011
I'm curious to hear from readers about how, or whether, the concept of 'rarity' entered your lives, and how it has expressed itself. Have you become, like Warren, a passionate collector of some obscure and wonderful class of object? Or, like me, become a dealer - that is, someone with all of the instincts, but none of the patience, of a collector? Or were you that guy out in the Best Buy parking lot at 3 in the morning? And how have other circumstances in your life - relative wealth or poverty; marriage and children; career, religion, race, politics, sexual orientation - how do you reckon these have informed your collecting (or non-collecting) habits?
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Collecting

Book Collecting 101 at The Private Library

Published on 15 Sept. 2011
Anyone who has spent much time exploring Internet sites devoted to book collecting can be excused for coming away with the feeling that such collecting is too expensive and/or too complicated for the average person. The focus at too many such sites continues to be on great rarities, or on well-heeled collectors, or on events that the average working stiff can't possibly take time off from work to attend. Here at The Private Library, though, we contend that anyone can collect the printed book!
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Collecting

The Literature of Collecting by Richard Wendorf

Published on 16 June 2011
Explorations into the world of books, libraries and the visual arts: Richard Wendorf, Stanford Calderwood Director and Librarian of the Boston Athenæum, provides a groundbreaking investigation of the relationship between the theoretical texts devoted to collecting and the fictional texts that also take collecting as their focus: not just John Fowles's "The Collector", but also Susan Sontag's "The Volcano Lover", Evan Connell's "The Connoisseur", Tibor Fischer's "The Collector Collector", Bruce Chatwin's "Utz", and Ian McEwan's early short story "Solid Geometry." Wendorf shows how the critical arguments posed by Benjamin, Baudrillard, Muensterberger and others play out in these modern literary texts and how, in turn, these fictional works complicate the ways in which we think about what it means to be a collector.
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Collecting

Vandérem et la bibliophilie nouvelle

Published on 08 Oct. 2010
Le mérite de cet épisode emporté de l'histoire de la bibliophilie française revient tout entier à Fernand Vandérem. En 1922, Henri Leclerc, libraire-expert, propriétaire de la revue, lui en a confié la direction. Homme tout autre et venu d'un tout autre bord que Georges Vicaire, son prédécesseur, Vandérem n'est ni un érudit ni un bibliographe patenté. C'est un écrivain, romancier sans succès et chroniqueur littéraire apprécié, qui s'est taillé dans le petit monde spécialisé de la librairie ancienne la réputation d'un amateur fin et paradoxal. L'aplomb de ses oukases et la causticité de son esprit en ont fait une manière de personnage. À la tête du Bulletin, il va révéler et déployer tous les talents d'un incomparable animateur.
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Collecting

The A-Z of Celebrity Book Collecting - Bookride reveals the hidden secrets of the rare book trade

Published on 27 Aug. 2010
The Who is Who of rare book collecting. Why does Charlie Woods never attend rare book auctions? What do Led Zeppelin and Crowley have in common? Who has bought a lock of Rupert Brooke's hair? And how much did it cost? Bookride reveals the "hidden" secrets of the antiquarian book trade and explains what is worth collecting in a glossary from A to Z: animals, Attenborough, auctions, Beatles, Boer War, Bloomsbury, Celine, Chesterton, colour printing, cookery, cricket, Crowley, design, Dracula, engineering, false books, flowers ...
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Collecting

How To Shop at a Used or Rare Book Store Without Being Murdered

Published on 26 Aug. 2010
"One of the questionable compensations which used booksellers [the rare books, not the sellers] receive in return for devoting themselves to a precarious vocation is a constant exposure to all the varieties and extremes of human behaviour at its most eccentric." So begins The Protocols of Used Bookstores, a serio-comic tract written and recently published by Toronto fine and rare bookseller (the rare books and the seller) David Mason. Within, Mason lists forty-four Rules to be heeded by the used and rare book buyer when patronizing a brick and mortar shop if they wish the proprietor to give them the time of day and a piece of their expertise as opposed to a time of death and a piece of their mind. Mason has put forth these rules "to help make your quest for a book simpler."
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55 - 63 / 76

From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Tante Trude’s Adventures at the 55th London International Antiquarian Book Fair

"Book fairs are fun and you learn a lot, but they do make your feet hurt!" As every year, Frank Werner of Brockhaus/Antiquarium exhibited at the International Antiquarian Book Fair in London. But this year was different. The book fair took place in the bigger and most beautiful National Hall at Olympia, and Frank Werner was accompanied by his aunt. It was the first book fair for Tante Trude, as he calls her, and she was excited!
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Article

Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair 2010

The 2010 Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair is one of the oldest and most respected antiquarian book shows in the United States. It will take place November 12 through November 14, 2010, at Boston's Hynes Convention Center. Over 120 rare book dealers from the United States, England, Germany and The Netherlands are expected to exhibit and sell rare, collectible and antiquarian books, modern first editions, manuscripts, autographs, maps, atlases, and a plethora of other literary ephemera. Fine and decorative prints will also be featured. The Events:
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Article

Under the Auspices of ILAB – International Antiquarian Book Fairs Across the World

Over the year and on all continents, there is an exquisite selection of antiquarian book fairs, where book collectors and the world's leading experts share their passion for the printed book and our written heritage. Under the auspices of the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB) and organized by ILAB's member associations amazing book fairs are held in Europe and America, Asia and Australia, from London and Paris to New York and California, Tokyo and Melbourne. The exhibitors are ILAB affiliates who guarantee high professional standards, high quality offers, the authenticity of the books, prints, autographs and ephemera for sale which are exactly described and accurately priced. On all these fairs, officially supported by ILAB, there is more than just the fascination of rare books: Here you can buy with confidence and trust in the expertise of the exhibitors.
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Article

Stamped with a National Character: Nineteenth Century American Color Plate Books - An Exhibition

Historical events seldom create neat time periods, but in this case the century fairly defines an era. The first American color plate book, William Birch's The City of Philadelphia...As It Appeared in the Year 1800, was published in parts in 1799-1800. At the end of the century, the mid-1890s saw the dawn of the widespread use of the trichromatic half-tone process, which quickly replaced the various mediums for producing color plate book illustrations that had been in use throughout the preceding century.
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