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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
Jessica Jordan
Collecting

Five Young Women With Prize-Winning Book Collections

Published on 11 Sept. 2018
The Paris Review, 7th September 2018: In 2017, Honey & Wax Booksellers established an annual prize for American women book collectors, aged 30 years and younger. The idea took shape when Heather O’Donnell and Rebecca Romney, the bookstore’s owners, observed that “the women who regularly buy books from us are less likely to call themselves 'collectors' than the men, even when those women have spent years passionately collecting books."
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Bookhunter on Safari - Confessions
Collecting

The Confessions of a Book-Hunter – 1926

Published on 20 July 2018
“I belong to that class of unfortunate beings who are addicted to a habit which it is not easy to break off. This sounds alarming, but let me assure you that neither drug nor dram is the cause of my undoing, and that I have no intention of following in the foot-steps of the English Opium-Eater. The truth is that I am a bibliophile, and I suffer a complaint common to the tribe, namely a feverish appetite which can only be assuaged by choice tit-bits in the form of ancient quartos and duodecimos”.
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Colin Franklin Prize
Collecting

Ekaterina Shatalova, winner of the 2017-18 Colin Franklin Prize for book-collecting

Published on 15 June 2018
The 2017-18 Colin Franklin Prize for book-collecting has been awarded to Ekaterina Shatalova (Keble College), for her collection of works by and about Edward Lear (1812-1888), the poet and illustrator famous for limericks in "A Book of Nonsense", and for poems recounting the nautical adventures of "The Owl and the Pussycat" and the "Jumblies" ('who went to sea in a sieve').
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Collecting

Winner of the James D. Forbes Collecting Prize 2017 - University of St Andrews (UK)

Published on 28 Nov. 2017
Arthur der Weduwen, PHD candidate at the University of St. Andrews in the UK, has just received the James D. Forbes Collecting Prize which has been awarded annually since its inauguration in 2015. The prize is named after the university's famous graduate and later professor (1833) and principal (1859), James David Forbes (1809 - 1868). Arthur der Weduwen has permitted ILAB to publish his report here.
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Collecting

The Book Huntresses: Women Bibliophiles

Published on 17 July 2017
In his 1930 work on book collecting, Anatomy of Bibliomania, Holbrook Jackson claimed that "book love is as masculine (although not as common) as growing a beard." Times have changed; the recent inauguration of a new book collecting prize by New York bookseller Honey & Wax, "an annual prize of $1000 to be awarded to an outstanding book collection conceived and built by a young woman", is possibly the final nail in the coffin of the idea that bibliophilia is a man's pursuit.
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Collecting

Book Collecting in the News - Lithub.com: 10 Famous Book Hoarders

Published on 23 June 2017
Ten famous book "hoarders" were selected for this article by Emily Temple for Lithub.com, published on 22 June 2017. Book collecting is a passion and lifelong occupation. Some celebrity collectors are named in the article; fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld, TV chef and author Nigella Lawson, filmmaker and producer George Lucas and more. While we might disagree with the term "hoarder", this is an interesting insight into the world of book collecting. To build a valuable and curated collection, it is advisable to contact or work with a bookseller affiliated to the International League of Antiquarian Books (ILAB).
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Collecting

Announcing a New Annual Prize for Young Female Book Collectors

Published on 31 May 2017
A message and wonderful initiative from Honey & Wax Booksellers, Brooklyn, NY:Here at Honey & Wax, we take a particular interest in the evolving role of women in the rare book trade, on both the buying and selling sides. The great American book collector Mary Hyde Eccles, the first woman elected to the Grolier Club, noted that a collector must have three things: resources, education, and freedom. Historically, she observed, "only a few women have had all three, but times are changing!"
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Books about Books: A History of Oak Knoll Press, Part 11: An International Presence

Back in the US, we published the first in a series of titles written by the New York antiquarian booksellers Leona Rostenberg and Madeleine Stern (Bib. #65) in which they reminiscence about their lengthy experience buying and selling rare books. They wrote with charm and painted vivid portraits of many of the famous collectors and dealers of their day. I had known them for a long time and had even reprinted a series of their catalogues as one of our first publications (Bib. #4). They had proposed me for membership in the ABAA in 1978. Over the years we published five of their titles including New Worlds in Old Books. This excellent book was distributed as a gift by Brigham Young University to all members of the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) in tribute to these two fine booksellers. Near the end of their long and productive lives, they submitted a manuscript to us that I felt needed additional work. I called them and talked over my thoughts as gently as I could but my suggested changes were not well received. Much to my regret, they did not talk to me again before they died.
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Article

Copenhagen 1948 - The Founding of the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers

How it all began: the minutes of the Congress in Copenhagen 1948, where the ILAB was officially founded and where the first President and the first ILAB Committee were elected. Lots of decisions were taken before the delicious Farewell Dinner with: "Harengs à la Danoise, Homards, Crevettes, Écrevisses, Saumon fumé, Anguille, Canard, Dindon, Côtes d'Agneau, Fromage", and Tuborg. Einar Grønholt Pedersen was President of the Danish Association of Antiquarian Booksellers at that time and host of the Congress which was to become the hour of birth of the League. He opened the Congress with an excellent speech about ILAB's aims and its ideas which unite the affiliates all over the world, in 1948 - and today.
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Article

When Wallace Stevens hit Ernest Hemingway in Key West

October 2 is the birthday of poet Wallace Stevens (1879), who won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1955 for his Collected Poems. For many years, he was frequent visitor to Key West, beginning in 1922. In 1936, he encountered Ernest Hemingway there, and thereby hangs a tale.
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Article

Naturalis historia. De terrarum gentiumque historia deque peregrinatione – Dr. Paul Kainbacher’s latest catalogue

Naturalis historia. De terrarum gentiumque historia deque peregrinatione – This is the title of Dr. Paul Kainbacher's latest catalogue. I hardly know where to start, it is so full of rare and beautiful books. Before I mention a few of these treasures, let me stress what a handsome catalogue it is. The format is a generous quarto. The catalogue is profusely illustrated in colour throughout. There is at least one, often more, pictures of each item, and there is a real lay-out, with insets and details, not just your boring description plus picture. All in all, a feast for the eye.
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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Three Men in a Boat encounter Russian pirates

This year is the 125th anniversary of the first appearance of Three Men in a Boat, published by J. W. Arrowsmith in Bristol (who, three years later, was to bring out that other classic comic novel, George and Weedon Grossmith's The Diary of a Nobody). Although slated by some critics at the time, the book sold in huge numbers, leading Arrowsmith to comment: 'I pay Jerome so much in royalties, I cannot imagine what becomes of all the copies of that book I issue. I often think the public must eat them.' It has never been out of print since.
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