Indeed, “Books don’t just furnish a room,” Michael Dirda writes in Browsings. “. . . Digital texts are all well and good, but books on shelves are a presence in your life. As such, they become a part of your day-to-day existence, reminding you, chastising you, calling to you. Plus, book collecting is, hands down, the greatest pastime in the world.”
Leonardo da Vinci was a tireless and inquisitive reader. He owned more than 200 books about science and technology as well as literary and religious topics. An exhibition organized by the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science and the Berlin State Library at the Museo Galileo in Florence sheds new light on the intellectual cosmos of the artist, engineer, and philosopher, who remains as fascinating as ever 500 years after his death.
« As a well-spent day brings happy sleep, so a life well spent brings happy death » (Leonardo da Vinci)
2019 commemorates the 500th anniversary of da Vinci, institutions worldwide have launched events and exhibitions.
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.
Un salon en pleine expansion...
Le SALON LIVRES RARES & OBJETS D’ART qui s’est tenu sous la nef du Grand Palais du 12 au 14 avril réunissait 181 libraires dont 55 étrangers venant de 14 pays différents, et 52 experts en objets d’art.
Once a year, the Committee of the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB) gets together to talk about the problems and challenges facing the League. This Committee consists of the officers of the League that actually do the day-to-day work of this international organization composed of 21 countries. The meeting falls half way between the Presidents Meeting and the Congress, with events held in alternating years in the fall of the year. For the last three years, the Committee Meeting has been held in Gimenelles, a quiet hotel about an hour outside Barcelona.
It’s a thrilling experience, a rite of passage into the trade. A member of the public thinks so highly of your skills as a book maven, (or your status as a cash cow), that they invite you into their private space to examine, and make an offer on, their books. You get to walk around pronouncing on the current state of the market, on what’s hot and what’s not, all the while maintaining an ingratiating stream of patter that, you hope, will convince the owner that you’re a sage and trustworthy expert.
Manuscripts are unique items, though many of them are similar and share general characteristics. A hard and fast set of regulations, which few will follow and others will not understand, has, therefore, less relevance for manuscripts than printed books and allows me to present my remarks more as an essay than a formulary. Much of what really matters is, in truth, predetermined by the honesty, integrity and sense of self-mortification in the cataloguer and the degree with which he seeks personally to attain perfection in terms of accuracy and straightforwardness. But such considerations have not always faced down earnest legislators in the past.
Baedeker's travel guides were the premium travel guides of the second half of the 19th and the first part of the 20th century, giving rise to the verse: "Kings and governments may err – but never Mr. Baedeker." They are keenly collected, and some of them are extremely rare, like the famous and seldom seen "Athen" Baedeker from 1896, which was not sold outside Greece.