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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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Autographs

„Vom Autographensammeln" - The First Modern Handbook on Autograph Collecting

Published on 21 Feb. 2011
„Vom Autographensammeln. Versuch einer Darstellung seines Wesens und seiner Geschichte im deutschen Sprachgebiet" was written by Günther Mecklenburg in 1963. It was the first modern handbook on autograph collecting - and still is THE German book on this subject. In various chapters the author describes all the basics of autograph collecting, gives definitions of common terms and abbreviations used in catalogues as well as a list of relevant bibliographies, catalogue raisonnés and archives. Günther Mecklenburg explains how autograph collections are built, how they are described and valuated. He lists resources to identify the handwritings of artists, authors, politicians and scientists and gives valuable advice how to differentiate between the original autograph and forgeries.
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Understanding Book Descriptions

Edgar Franco, Dictionary of Terms

Published on 07 Dec. 2009
In English, French, German and Italian. "Contrary to common practice, this dictionary contains as few words as possible. I have limited the terms, to those used by antiquarian booksellers, which are not to be found in the usual bilingual, trilingual, or multilingual dictionaries. " Edgar Franco, Dictionary of Terms and Expressions Commonly Used in the Antiquarian Book Trade Edgar Franco's "Dictionary" was published by the ILAB in 1994. It is available as a pdf file, and as a print version.
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Understanding Book Descriptions

John Carter, ABC for Book Collectors

Published on 07 Dec. 2009
"Like all good reference books, the ABC for Book Collectors conveys much in a little, sets limits to its subject and keeps within them, and - saving grace - treats that subject with individuality as well as authority, in a style at once concise, forthright and witty. It is, in short, a masterpiece, whose merits are acknowledged by the fact that it has never, in forty years, been out of print." (Nicolas Barker in his introduction to the revised edition of the "ABC for Book Collectors", Oak Knoll Press 1995) John Carter, ABC for Book Collectors The ABC for Book Collectors is presented here, with our thanks, by permission of Bob Fleck, Oak Knoll Press. Nicolas Barker about the ABC for Book Collectors
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Middle Temple Crimes - British Booksellers Pop Up at Middle Temple on UNESCO World Book and Copyright Day

When I first wrote about a World Rare Book Day on the blog only last September (see the post of that title) it was an idea still in the making. The charity tie-in with UNESCO was hoped for but not confirmed. Most of the events not even thought of. I am just absolutely thrilled that it has all come together so successfully. Huge congratulations to all concerned, especially my good friends Norbert Donhofer, Sally Burdon and Barbara van Benthem – you can see the full extent of what they have achieved on the official blog at http://ilabpopupbookfairs.blogspot.co.uk/ ... What a day it is going to be. It is all turning out just as imagined, kicking off with a Shakespeare first folio on display in Sydney. An antiquarian book plaza in Tokyo. Events as far afield as Cape Town and Moscow – Zurich, Vienna, Budapest, Milan, Munich, Paris, Antwerp, Copenhagen and elsewhere – books on a barge in Amsterdam, books at Haarlem Central railway station, a pop-up of pop-ups in Sweden, a fair at the Middle Temple Library here in London, and then across the Atlantic to New York, Chicago, Washington, Delaware and Seattle – and ending up, as good booksellers everywhere always do, in the pub. This one in Portland, Oregon.
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Article

49th California International Antiquarian Book Fair, 12-14 February 2016

From February 12 to 14, 2016, thousands of book lovers, rare book dealers, and scholars will converge at the Pasadena Convention Center for the 49th California International Antiquarian Book Fair. Recognized as one of the world's largest and most prestigious exhibitions of antiquarian books, the Book Fair gives visitors the opportunity to see, learn about and purchase the finest in rare and valuable books, manuscripts, autographs, graphics, photographs and more. The 2016 edition of the Book Fair will also include a special exhibit marking the 150th anniversary of the publication of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland.
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Article

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions: It's Purely Academic at The Private Library

Anyone who reads much so-called academic fiction may be forgiven for thinking that some of the folks teaching our sons and daughters are, for the most part, a bunch of narcissistic, neurotic misfits (Malcom Bradbury: The History Man; Elain Showalter: Faculty Towers). Although the rise of this fictional genre began in earnest in the mid 1950s, its roots can be traced as far back as Anthony Trollope's 1857 novel of provincial Anglican preferment, Barchester Towers, and - more to the point - George Eliot's Middlemarch (1872).
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Article

Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair 2010

The 2010 Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair is one of the oldest and most respected antiquarian book shows in the United States. It will take place November 12 through November 14, 2010, at Boston's Hynes Convention Center. Over 120 rare book dealers from the United States, England, Germany and The Netherlands are expected to exhibit and sell rare, collectible and antiquarian books, modern first editions, manuscripts, autographs, maps, atlases, and a plethora of other literary ephemera. Fine and decorative prints will also be featured. The Events:
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Article

Four surviving Magna Carta copies to be displayed together at the British Library

For three days in 2015, the four surviving original copies of Magna Carta will be brought together for the first time, the British Library has announced.
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Article

I bet you can't become the biggest selling female author in the World. Or, Agatha Christie's The Mysterious Affair at Styles

Agatha Christie apparently wrote The Mysterious Affair at Styles as the result of a bet. The loser of this bet, her sister, thought that Christie couldn't write a crime detective story that kept the reader guessing the identity of the murderer until the end, despite knowing everything that the Detective knew throughout. She not only lost the bet in a spectacular fashion but in the process kick started the career of the biggest selling female author the world has known. Shakespeare beats Christie's 3 - 4 billion estimated books sold, but he does have 300 years head start by dying in 1616. Christie wrote "Styles" in 1916.
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