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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
 
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Booksellers Worldwide

Suburban - The Bookshop of Anthony C. Hall

Published on 26 March 2012
A visit today to one of the most threatened of all species – something in fact not so far encountered on my travels – a genuine suburban bookshop. Those of us who are themselves suburban will no doubt remember how many there used to be. To Twickenham – familiar enough terrain for me, my school was within walking distance of the famous rugby stadium. One of the school's most charming customs (now I bring it to mind, probably its only one) was that the older boys were allowed the afternoon off each year to go to the 'Varsity Match.
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Booksellers Worldwide

The Right Book - Derek McDonnell

Published on 31 Jan. 2012
Derek McDonnell has, over the course of 25 years at Hordern House, established himself as a pre-eminent dealer in Australiana and the history of Pacific exploration. He and his partner Anne McCormick have produced a series of beautiful and scholarly catalogues, which have established a new bibliographical standard for their subjects, as well as publishing a series of essential bibliographies. He enjoys a global circle of colleague friends and is one of the most admired figures in the trade.
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Booksellers Worldwide

“You’ve got to keep rolling the dice”

Published on 24 Jan. 2012
"I didn't decide to become a bookseller; I fell into it by accident. In my early 20s I was determined to be an artist and that's what I was until I reached about 25. Then I started helping a friend with a stall outdoors on the Portobello Road on Saturdays and, after a while, I got my own pitch. I happened to do better with the stall than I was doing at painting and I enjoyed it more than painting to a point. Then I started having children and so needed money, and I realised that I was doing more bookselling and less painting and I was actually enjoying it. The day I realised that, I stopped painting and just started focusing on bookselling." - Shelf Fullfillment, the new blog of the ABA, starts with a very interesting series of interviews by Beatie Wolfe.
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Booksellers Worldwide

The President on Safari - Dublin’s Fair City

Published on 04 Nov. 2011
Laurence Worms, President of the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association (ABA), promised the ABA members that he would travel around the British Isles to see as many of his colleagues as possible. He publishes his travel accounts in his blog "The President on Safari". This is Laurence Worms' report about the legendary Irish hospitality and a very special trip to Dublin.
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Booksellers Worldwide

Vienna – Munich and Back

Published on 07 Sept. 2011
"Two Steinbach's at the same place would not have worked out": Michael Steinbach grew up in a rare bookselling family, but instead of taking over his father's business he moved from Vienna to Los Angeles, then to Munich, established his own firm, and travelled around the world. Now, after 40 years he has returned to his hometown, and he will certainly not hesitate to catch one of the next airplanes to Tokyo. Or Hong Kong? New York? Paris? Barcelona?
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Booksellers Worldwide

"Rare book dealers need more than 'Fingerspitzengefühl', they need a kind of sixth sense, paired with profound knowledge."

Published on 21 June 2011
It runs in the family: In 1993 both father and son sat at the conference table of the Presidents Meeting in Los Angeles. Anton Gerits as ILAB President, Arnoud Gerits joined the meeting as delegate of the Dutch Antiquarian Booksellers' Association (NVvA). "I have grown up in a rare book selling family. Books, reading, and the interest in history and politics were vital for us", says Arnoud Gerits. He studied history and Dutch language and literature at the University of Amsterdam. In the 1970s most professors held their lectures about the Middle Ages. As he has always been a passionate reader with a special interest in history, he knew most books, facts, persons and epochs they were referring to in their lectures - and got bored. He took his degrees and thought about his future career. Then, one evening in Amsterdam, a friend celebrated the opening of his bookshop, and at the opening Arnoud Gerits met the owner of Athenaeum, one of Holland's largest independent bookstores founded in 1966. The owner urged him to establish his own business. "Anioud suddenly I knew: I wanted to become a bookseller." The next day Arnoud Gerits called his father, who said: "If you want to work in a bookshop, why don't you work for me?" A conversation with ILAB President Arnoud Gerits.
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Booksellers Worldwide

Diana Parikian’s Swansong

Published on 15 June 2011
Diana Parikian, one of the most g ift, hardworking and highly regarded booksellers in the trade, recently announced her 'retirement', prompting the above remark in The Book Collector. Diana created whole fields of collecting interests and library trends, from emblem books to Wunderkammer, and many a rare book collector and librarian is indebted to her. Her finds include neo-Latin Renaissance literature, early theatre, opera libretti, documents of art history as well as forays into conjuring and cookery. Diana belongs to that small group of booksellers who actually read, or at least browse, the contents of obscure books, in Latin. Italian and French, to discover some unknown feature. She has published 80 catalogues over the last 45 years.
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

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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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Happy Birthday, Gun Maker Samuel Colt

July 19th is the birthday of inventor Samuel Colt (1814), who is remembered for the revolver that bears his name. Colt didn't invent the revolver but his designs greatly improved it and his assembly line manufacturing system made mass production of the sidearms practical.
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Article

Tracking down the story of a Gutenberg Bible and a remarkable female collector

The New York Times reviews the recent publication by Margaret Leslie Davis: "THE LOST GUTENBERG: The Astounding Story of One Book’s Five-Hundred-Year Odyssey", describing the story of the American book collector Estelle Doheny and her acquisition of a Gutenberg Bible.
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Article

The Greatest Book Collector You Never Heard Of

"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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