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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Autographs

›Sammlung Berge‹ geht nach Marbach

Published on 22 Nov. 2017
Das Deutsche Literaturarchiv Marbach hat kürzlich eine Frankfurter Privatsammlung zu Eduard Mörike erworben. Der Sammler Klaus Berge, verdientes Mitglied der Deutschen Schillergesellschaft und langjähriger Freund des Hauses, hat über mehr als drei Jahrzehnte hinweg sachkundig Handschriften, Erstausgaben, Widmungsexemplare, Grafiken und Gegenständliches von und zu Eduard Mörike sowie seinem Umkreis zusammengetragen.
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Autographs

Music and Theatre in Bohemia and Europe – The Autograph Collection of Fritz Donebauer (Prague)

Published on 22 May 2013
105 years ago, from 6th to 8th August, 1908, a famous 19th century autograph collection was auctioned by J. A. Stargardt in Berlin. The owner of the collection was Fritz Donebauer, born in 1849 as a son of a Bohemian innkeeper who became a banker and insurance agent in Prague, and most of all: a collector. In his lifetime he owned hundreds of autographs and manuscripts of mostly Bohemian theatre artists and musicians as well as rare documents from the history of Bohemia and the Thirty Years War. Little is known about Fritz Donebauer, whose collection came to auction in Berlin in April 1908, and even less is known about the private collectors, dealers and institutions who bought the documents, manuscripts and handwritten letters. Eberhard Köstler tries to reconstruct Fritz Donebauer's life and the fate of his famous collection.
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Autographs

The Alec Guiness Archive at the British Library

Published on 14 Feb. 2013
The British Library has acquired the personal archive of Sir Alec Guinness. The archive includes more than 900 of his letters to family and friends and over 100 volumes of diaries from the late 1930s to his death in the year 2000. The letters and diaries of the award winning British actor enrich the British Library's collection of archives of great 20th century artists along with those of Laurence Olivier, John Gielgud and Ralph Richardson.
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Autographs

Dedication Copies and the Antiquarian Book Trade

Published on 09 Jan. 2013
How much is it worth? This question is most often asked by book collectors. And most often, there is not a precise answer. Although it is quite common nowadays to discuss rare books "as investments", the value of a book can hardly be counted in Dollars and Euros. It is even more difficult to measure the "worth" of dedication copies. Is the book inscribed by the author? Is this author famous and important, dead or alive? To whom is the book inscribed? Which words did the author choose to express his gratitude or sympathy? Eberhard Köstler, autograph specialist, gives examples of dedications by George Bernard Shaw, George Orwell, Franz Kafka, Thomas Mann and many other authors, and he shows that nothing is binding when it comes to the "real worth" of dedications.
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Autographs

Provenance and The Private Library

Published on 29 Nov. 2012
In detective fiction and on the cop shows it's called "chain of evidence." Book collectors call it provenance. Unless you plan to build your private library solely with "hot off the press" titles, you need to understand provenance. The concept is important for all kinds of collectibles, from works of art to books to archaeological artifacts. Basically, it means: "to confirm or gather evidence as to the time, place, and if appropriate, the person responsible, for the creation, production or discovery of [an] object."
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Collecting - The Russian taste for Edgar Allan Poe

'"Edgar Poe - the underground stream in Russia." So the Russian Symbolist poet Aleksandr Blok noted in his journal for November 6, 1911, a topic for a future critical study. The article was never written, but the prospect has remained an enticing one. For Poe's fame, however clouded by conflicting interpretation, is of long standing in Russia' (Joan Delaney Grossman, Edgar Allan Poe in Russia: a study in legend and literary influence, p. 7).
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Article

Beyond the Printed Page: Robert Sabuda is the superstar of the modern pop-up book

"Robert Sabuda is a man of many dimensions. In the author and illustrator's hands, children's stories unfold — and also tumble, pop, fly, rise up, spin and leap from the page. Sabuda is the modern master of a technique used to bring text to life since the 13th century. In the realm of pop-up books, Robert Sabuda stands out."
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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - C. Perry Snell, Snell Isle's Visionary

In the 1920s, dreamers and schemers descended on the Sunshine State bent on making a fortune in the burgeoning real estate market. In the earliest days of the Florida Land Boom, it seemed that one had but to imagine great wealth for it to be so. Parcels were bought and sold, sometimes within hours, at huge profits. The real estate bubble didn't last long - a scant five years or so - and when the end came some would-be real estate tycoons were stuck with land bought at inflated prices and no money. But there were developers who, though they had prospered during the boom, were cautious and had not been caught up in the buying frenzy. C. Perry Snell, for instance, had been in St. Petersburg for a couple of decades before the hubbub began. He had successfully developed residential projects that eventually became known as Old Northeast. He owned land bought many years before that he had not yet developed.
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Article

Women in the Book Trade – Past and Present

In September 2018, Deborah Coltham writes: As one of a series of informal talks organised at the Battersea Book Fair in May, I was asked to talk about the growing number of Women in the Book Trade.
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Article

Incunabula Project Blog

The Cambridge University Library is cataloguing its collection of 4,650 incunabula online for the first time. The collection, part of which goes back to the late 15th century, is internationally renowned and includes some 134 unique items.
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