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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Aldus Manutius

The Aldine Italic

Published on 21 July 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

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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Reference Book of the Day: Minsheu, Ductor in Linguas

Oh, how I love extravagant sixteenth- and seventeenth-century displays of over-the-top erudition. Things like the Dictionarium Græcolatinum (1568), Ortelius's Thesaurus geographicus (1578), Raleigh's History of the World (1614), Alsted's seven-volumeCompendium philosophicum stretching to 2,404 folio pages (1626), Brian Walton's polyglot Bible in six huge folios (1654–57), and Chauvin's Lexicon rationale (1692). These are books that Tony Grafton was reading in his crib, but to the rest of us they're insane compendia of obscure learning that we'll never hope to master.
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Article

The Wonders of the Shore in Color

Long before Darwin's Origin was published in 1859 there was in Victorian society a strong popular interest in natural history. Not only did the microscope reveal previously hidden wonders, exposing for the first time the sexual life of plants, but advances in printing technology made it possible to reproduce and disseminate such images – in color – among the new and rapidly growing middle and working class populations. An excellent example of this historically unique intersection between science, technology and religion just appeared on my desk: the 1855 edition of Rev. Charles Kingsley's Glaucus, or the Wonders of the Shore.
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Article

Six Famous Authors Who Were Also Ghostwriters

Halloween is the time for ghouls, goblins, witches, and ... ghosts. In the art world, ghosts aren't merely the phantoms, banshees, and spooks of horror stories; there are also ghosts of the pen. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart would ghostwrite music for wealthy patrons, and plenty of famous authors have written works on behalf of others as well.
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Article

Taking a Gamble: On Being Wrong III

Here's something that has hung on the wall of every office I've had for the past five years (that four offices, in case you're counting). It's a single sheet; text and image on one side, text alone on the other. I have two more much like it. But I don't keep them up because I am interested in polo or Middle Eastern art. Or even because I like the images. They serve as a reminder.
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Booksellers

Bernard M. Rosenthal Turns 90 - A Life for Rare Books and Manuscripts

On April 29, 2010, the family and close friends of Barney Rosenthal met at the renowned Family Club in San Francisco to celebrate Barney's 90th birthday. In addition to Barney, his wife Ruth, and his son David, about 40 librarians, collectors, dealers, printers, and binders, gathered to honor the great man.
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