“The Milan conference saw the publication and distribution of A Compendium of Usages and Customs of the Trade (today: The ILAB Code of Ethics). This useful volume defined the customary practices of the rare book trade (as William Kundig had once proposed) for use in disputes, litigation, or legal difficulties … This being Italy, the venue for the farewell dinner could hardly have been more romantic. Coaches were hired to drive us all to Lake Como, where we dined in the ballroom of the Grand Hotel Villa de’Este, the honeymoon choice of many a British bride and bridegroom in pre-war days. After the dinner and not-to-be-avoided speeches, we danced until two in the morning on the cool mosaic floor, ending the evening with Ingelese Blaizot singing French love songs and Percy responding with English ones.”
Marguerite Studer Goldschmidt was born in England to Swiss parents, she was educated in England and Switzerland. Her father, Paul Studer, was professor of Romance languages at Oxford University. In 1932 Marguerite began to study librarianship at the University of Geneva, apprenticed at the libraries of the Universities of Bristol (UK), Geneva (Switzerland) and Tubingen (Germany). She became assistant cataloguer at the University of Bristol library, associate of the British Library, and librarian of the Bush House Library at the BBC in London. There she met Lucien Goldschmidt: “on a double date for lunch at Lloyd's Corner. She remembers that he added money to the tip, a generous act that conveyed a sense of European manners and courtliness that even 59 years later still brings a smile. ‘He was a gentleman and I knew it then.’"
I have been asked in the past, although not often, Why are there 3 first editions of Peter Rabbit? How can that be? The answer is that there aren't really. There can be only one true first, but there can be variations in the text and then commercially produced editions, each of which lays a claim to that title. With Peter Rabbit this is the case. There are three different books that are all referred to as First Edition, although qualified with the necessary publishing details as well, so we have ...
In the digital age, it is no secret that calligraphy is a dying art. Why work laboriously and imperfectly on something that takes days to cross the country, when the computer will set it in flawless text that can be transmitted instantly? A careful look at the grand history of handwriting is not kind to the craft, either. Some historians consider Gutenberg's press, the very device that liberated us from writing by hand, to be the single most important invention of the second millennium. Not only did it make books more accessible, it gave the works themselves unprecedented longevity. Think of all the masterpieces of antiquity (if you can bear) that were lost to rot and ruin because scribes could only produce a handful of them at a time. Aeschylus wrote some eighty plays, of which only seven survive. Shakespeare may have suffered a similar fate, as a writer who luckily had the printing press to immortalize his works - he leaves us with nearly nothing written by hand.
"What book, born of the political upheavals in mid-nineteenth century Europe, spearheaded radical Leftist Anarchism in the United States during the late-nineteenth through early decades of the twentieth century and then, intellectually banished for a few decades, returned in the mid-twentieth century from exile to rise, by the end of the late-twentieth century, as the philosophical cornerstone of a Conservative wing of the Republican party?" Stephen Gertz rediscovers Max Stirner's "Der Einzige und sein Eigentum" ("The Ego and His Own") in an awesome Booktryst post.
A landmark exhibition, organized by the Sackler and the Smithsonian's Freer Gallery of Art in collaboration with the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts in Istanbul, features more than 60 Qur'ans, among the most important ever produced from the Arab world, Turkey, Iran and Afghanistan, including works from the permanent collection of the Freer and Sackler galleries plus a number of long-term loans.