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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Aldus Manutius

The Aldine Italic

Published on 26 May 2018
From our survey of fifteenth century types it would appear that every country had its formal pointed black-letter; every country, save England, its classical roman type; and every country - except, perhaps, Spain - its cursive vernacular black-letter type, copied from the handwriting of the locality and time. Before 1500 Italy had no vernacular type simply because the current handwriting of Italy (which was not of the black-letter school) was only translated into type-forms at the beginning of the sixteenth century.
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

The Collector and The Collected: Two Typophiles From New York

"There are two typophiles from New York in my library: the Collector and the Collected. One was born in Rochester in 1918. The other died in Rochester in 1991. One sold printing equipment and supplies. The other ran two printing firms, one of which belonged to his father. One collected printing presses and books about printing. The other wrote a bibliography of books about printing. One was a witness in a hearing of the Committee on Un-American Activities in the 1950s (he sold printing equipment to the Communist Party). The other was Director of the Printing and Publishing Division of the Department of Commerce in the 1950s. One sold his antique press collection to the Canadian National Museum of Science and Technology in the early 1970s. The other sold his printing equipment company in 1966, and became a graphics arts consultant. One moved to California in the early 1970s. The other moved back to Rochester after he retired. One was a member of the Roxburghe Club and the Book Club of California. The other was a member of the Typophiles, the Goudy Society, and the Grolier Club. Who is the Collector? And who is the Collected?"
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Article

The Big Day Stay

It has always been my intention, since I began writing this column for Rare Book Review, to alternate chatty and anecdotal essays on bookish topics, with magisterial, carefully researched articles replete with detailed and incisive commentary on topics of immediate and vital interest to the rare book world. Thus after my self-indulgent and rambling article on poetry in the last issue, I was scheduled to reveal several exciting discoveries that would significantly forward the art and science of bibliography. And with that intention did I gather my copious research materials, as Heidi and I left for the weekend to our tiny cottage retreat by the shore in Cape May Point.
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Article

Rare Book Collector Spotlight: Modern First Editions of Moshe Prigan

Moshe Prigan is an accomplished book collector, freelance writer, and retired teacher of art and history. He lives in Haifa, Israel but searches globally to make new acquisitions for his collection. While mainly interested in English and Italian volumes of Umberto Eco, he also collects other authors including Alice Munro and Margaret Atwood. Moshe has generously shared his collecting insights with us in the following interview.
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Article

Collecting Graphic Novels

Graphic novels haven't always held an esteemed spot on collectors' shelves. While earlier incarnations of the graphic novel (i.e., comic books) have indeed been objects heavily and preciously collected, the rise of the graphic novel is assumed to be, for many readers, a relatively new phenomenon. Yet many graphic novels (and other works by their authors) are quite collectible. If you're thinking about starting a new type of collection, delving into the history of this genre might be for you.
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Article

Life in Courts: Ten Reasons to Visit Vita Sackville-West’s Childhood Home

Vita Sackville-West may never have quite made it into the premier league of English writers, but her love affair with Virginia Woolf did lead to the composition of the Bloomsbury novelist's most accessible and influential novel, Orlando. Woolf was enchanted not only by Vita's vital charisma, but also by the sprawling Elizabethan palace which remained an intrinsic part of her, even when she no longer lived there. Over the course of the novel the house and the character Orlando evolve together, at times parting, but ultimately meeting again just as intimately as they had at the very beginning...
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Article

Rare Books in the Press - Book Collecting Basics: Ditch the Dust Jacket?

"If you've ever purchased a hardcover book, you're probably familiar with the dust jacket or, depending on which side of the pond you are, the dust-wrapper. Indeed, they've been around since the 1820's! These paper coverings are designed to protect a book's cloth cover as the book travels from the publisher to your bookshelf. Some readers remove their dust jackets—or even use them as bookmarks! But when it comes to rare books or collectible book, dust jackets should be treated with significant care as they often add significant value to the book."
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