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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
 
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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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Collecting

Rare Books to Honour the Still Alive - “Festschriften and The Private Library”

Published on 18 Aug. 2010
Memorials are published after the death of an author, artist or scientist. "It is rare that such tributes are composed while an honoree is still alive, though such tributes are not unknown." "Festschriften" – there is no English or American equivalent for what is meant by the German word – are addressed to scientists during their life and career. L. D. Mitchell introduces a field of collecting rare books which are popular in the scholarly world, but nearly unknown to bibliophiles.
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Collecting

“The Precious Unprinted Contents of Books” – Handwritten notes, flowers and other things you find in rare books

Published on 16 Aug. 2010
Open an old book and find – a flower, or better: a bank note, photographs, letters, notes scribbled on the pages, exhibitions tickets. Even if a book is boring you may find something interesting between the lines or pages, if it is an old book, not a Kindle. The Guardian Book Blog muses about "marginalia and forgotten mementoes" in the age of the internet.
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55 - 63 / 74

From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

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

Copenhagen 1948

The International League of Antiquarian Booksellers¾ILAB to English-speaking members, LILA to the French-speaking¾came into being the following day. Its constitution, drawn up by the ten presidents, was approved by the general assembly, its officers and executive committee duly elected. Its birth had not been easy, the labor had been protracted, and it would suffer growing pains for years to come; but it was a wanted child, and the Danes saw to it that its christening was suitably celebrated.
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Article

The World’s Expert Antiquarian Booksellers - In 1 Book!

The new edition of the ILAB Directory has recently been published. The Directoy gives easy access to information on the almost 2.000 ILAB booksellers around the world that are experts in their chosen fields and stand behind the ethical standards of ILAB. In this new electronic world you will find this expertise and adherence to standards an essential part in making your buying experience a pleasant one.
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SLAM Prize for Bibliography

Prix de bibliographie 2010

Le Prix de Bibliographie 2010 a été attribué à l’ouvrage suivant :
ARON Paul & ESPAGNON (Jacques). Répertoire des pastiches et parodies littéraires des XIXe et XXe siècles. Paris, PUPS, 2009.
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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions: Poe and Rafinesque in Philadelphia

It is not often that one discovers the work of an overlooked or forgotten genius, or a previously-unknown work of an established master. This is, of course, the hope which moves us to carefully examine all sorts of periodical publications and ephemera. So when Tom Congalton asked me to catalog two large folio volumes of the Philadelphia-based Saturday Evening Post, from 1827 and 1828, I was pleased to find the puzzle poem "Enigma" attributed to Edgar Allan Poe, and "Psalm 139th" by his brother Henry Poe. Perhaps the most interesting contributions to these volumes are not the Poeiana, but rather a whole series of botanical sketches and other contributions by an eccentric genius with the evocative name Rafinesque.
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