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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
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The ABA and the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers

Published on 27 March 2018
The ABA and ILAB look back at a long history. The ABA is relaunching its flagship fair in London this year, the oldest antiquarian book fair in the world, under the auspices of ILAB. This text by the late Anthony Rota, ABA bookseller and ILAB President of Honour, was published in 2008 in the ABA Directory.
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From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

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In the Press - Rare Book Crime Capers: Forgery, Theft, Murder and the Holy Grail of American Printing

Travis McDade, author of an article on The Professionalization of Library Theft, published on the ILAB website, and of a recently published book titled "Thieves of Book Row" tells another amazing story about book theft and forgery in The Million. Read the whole article:
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Books stolen from the Cappuccini Library in Florence

A number of books has been stolen from the Cappuccini Library in Florence (Italy), among them are rare incunabula and 16th century printed books. The attached list contains book descriptions as well as pictures of the library stamps and other provenances. If you come across of one or more of the items listed in the pdf file, please contact Fabrizio Govi, President of ALAI, or Susanna Vannocci.
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Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Why I Bothered

"If you keep an open mind in this business, you learn something new every day." Greg Gibson on collecting the unusual: "Fire insurance mapping began in London in the 1700s, but it had never been applied with a systematic approach. In 1867 Daniel Alfred Sanborn, a surveyor from Massachusetts, saw the need for such a service, and quickly occupied that niche. By the late 1800s he had offices spanning the continent, sending out thousands of surveyors to record the footprints and construction details of buildings in American cities. Insurance companies could then use this information to write accurate policies, based on potential fire risk as documented by Sanborn's company."
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Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - The Original “Big Book”

In the "random" (this week's nomination for a word that's been misused to death) way typical of buying trips, last week's journey through Maine, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia yielded some interesting and unexpected finds. But the biggest purchase, and I mean biggest, was John Scott Russell's Modern System of Naval Architecture. The book, in three large folio volumes, measures 20 ½ x 27 ½ inches and weighs in at well over 120 pounds. I've sold three or four copies over the years. Once I had to mail one. Took me all day to wrap it.
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The Bancroft Library, Berkeley in partnership with the 50th California Antiquarian Book Fair 2017

This year's California Antiquarian Book Fair will include a special exhibit from The Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, which has a long history of collecting the literary fiction of California.
We spoke to librarian and curator of the special exhibit, Randal S. Brandt about the library and its collections and why the special exhibit was chosen for this year's California fair.
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Article

Photographically illustrated Books

It is widely known that in 1839 William Henry Fox Talbot invented the positive-negative system of photography that effectively was the medium until the digital age supplanted it 150 years later. It is less wellknown that from 1852 he concentrated on perfecting his photoglyphic engraving process, the precursor to photogravure, which revolutionized high-quality book illustration and art reproduction from the 1880s.
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