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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Collecting

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

Published on 19 July 2018
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 19 July 2018
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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Collecting

The Greatest Book Collector You Never Heard Of

Published on 19 July 2018
"One room was abandoned when the piles neared the ceiling, and at some point a subsidence of books blocked the door from the inside, sealing the room off. He established an annex in the garage, where piles of loose books mingled with unopened purchases from local shops and parcels from overseas ..."
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Celal Sengör

Published on 19 July 2018
Celal Sengör is one of the leading geologists and specialist on earthquakes worldwide. He is a professor of the Technical University in Istanbul – and possesses what is probably the largest private library on geology and it’s history from the very beginnings until today. His library, built into the hills above the Bosporus, contains more than 30,000 volumes...
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Bibliofilia e bibliomania - Or: The Fascination of Rare Books and Autographs

Published on 19 July 2018
Umberto Eco held his "lectio magistralis" about "Bibliofilia e bibliomania" in Turin. Professor Eco himself is "A Bibliophile of huge Ec(h)o", as Umberto Pregliasco has characterized him. In September 2010 he will open the 39th ILAB Congress and 23rd International Book Fair in Bologna with a lecture - a great honour for the League, and a great pleasure for every bibliophile who will have the chance to attend this event.
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Collecting

The Foots and the Poets

Published on 19 July 2018
Very recently, a delightful new book tumbled on to my desk from an otherwise boring mail delivery - a Yard (3 Foots) Anthology, which straight away brightened my day and finished off anything else I had planned to do. For it immediately took me back many years to a different era. After a preliminary look-through, I was so grateful that I telephoned the donor to thank him most profusely and genuinely.
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A Lurid Story of Book Dope And Lives Twisted By Mad Desire!

Published on 19 July 2018
Hard-boiled dames caught in the grip of a habit beyond their control; corrupt dolls seeking cheap thrills between the sheets of a book; innocents ensnared into the rare book racket, underage girls seduced by slick blurbs, and grown men brought to their knees by bibliographical points that slay dreams in a depraved world.
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Collecting

"Caro Onomonimo ... speriamo di non liberarci dai libri"

Published on 19 July 2018
Avere l'ambizione di presentare Umberto Eco, che ha inaugurato la Fiera del Libro di Torino con la conversazione Non sperate di liberarvi dei libri, può sembrare pretenzioso: ma non intendo qui parlare del professore di semiotica, dello scrittore italiano vivente più conosciuto nel mondo, bensì di Umberto Eco bibliofilo, raccontando quelle che sono le relazioni pericolose tra il collezionista ed il proprio pusher di libri antichi: un'esperienza unica, che consente al libraio di entrare nello spirito, ancor prima che nel portafoglio, del cliente.
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Searching for New Sources in Western History

All historians must be concerned with their sources. In many instances these are easily accessible, far more so today than in the past, in the relative convenience of professionally run university libraries, historical societies or museums. Since World War II academic institutions in the United States have enjoyed an extraordinary growth in their collections of the raw materials of American history, coupled with technological advances which have made it vastly easier to catalogue, locate and reach the original documents within the protective web of institutional control. It has never been easier to reach the books and manuscripts that are the bases of historical research.
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Article

Europeana - A project by the European Commission against the 'Dark Age' of private digitalization

"Can Europe afford to be inactive and wait, or leave it to one or more private players to digitise our common cultural heritage? Our answer is a resounding 'no'," German national library head Elisabeth Niggeman, Maurice Levy and Jacques de Decker say in their recent EU report. They are strong supporters of Europeana, a project of the European Commission launched in 2008.
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Article

Book Collecting Basics - A Brief History of the Dust Jacket

As most collectors are aware, a dust jacket in fine condition can greatly enhance the value of a book. Indeed, for modern first editions, a book without the dust jacket will sell for only a fraction of the price. Once intended to be temporary and disposable protection for beautifully bound books, dust jackets have become - in some ways - more valuable than the books they protect. How and when did this change occur?
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Article

A Bibliophile Journey to the Netherlands

The Netherlands is a country with a long tradition in the international antiquarian book trade. It was the idea of the Dutch bookseller Menno Hertzberger to found the International League of Antiquarian booksellers in 1947. Let's make a trip to the important places of the bookish Holland. We will visit Anton Gerits, ILAB President of Honour, who began to travel to the USSR in 1960s in order to buy rare books. He and his son Arnoud Gerits, ILAB Immediate Past President, sold a huge collection "The two Russian revolutions. The libraries of Leon Bernstein and Boris Souvarine". Then we will go to Amsterdam to visit Ton Kok, President of Nederlandsche Vereeniging van Antiquaren (NVvA). His bookshop impresses with its size. Finally, we will visit the auction house "Bubb Kuyper" in Haarlem, the book town Bredevort and the book Museum Meermanno in The Hague.
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