To filter through hundreds of articles, tick the boxes below
ILAB Library - All You Need To Know About Rare Books and the Antiquarian Book Trade
Published since 12 Mar 2013
Most bibliographers and librarians attribute the book “L’Histoire de la Jamaïque”, published by Nourse 1751, to the British author Sir Hans Sloane. Wrong! This “L’Histoire’ is a translation of a work published in Edinburgh in 1739. The author is Charles Leslie, and the book is called “A New and Exact Account of Jamaica”. The French / English journalist Thibault Ehrengardt re-writes the history of a bibliographical confusion.
Published since 18 May 2012
It’s that time of year when many of us begin to get that itch to get away. Summer is right around the corner, and with it the mystical promise of summer travel. If you’re stuck at home this holiday season, or looking for a little inspiration for this year’s travels, you may find help from a seemingly unlikely source: Mark Twain. That’s right: this titan of American literature got his start as a travel writer.
Published since 21 Mar 2012
Before practically everyone had one of these cunning little electronic navigation systems, there used to be road atlases. They were heavy and cumbersome and one had to flip from pp. 14/15 to 168/169 at a moment’s notice, most often when you had just missed junction 5 or 6 or 7 on a major highway. In the 1960s someone recognized the problem and came up with an amazing little gadget which is, in some respect, even more practicable than the modern GPS (although without the lovely voice). Frank Werner has tested it for his new blog “Books and other Animals”.
Published since 16 Mar 2012
In his new book “Travel: A Literary History” Peter Whitfield covers the broad genre of travel writing from the early accounts by missionaries to empire builders, thrill seekers and satirists. The book ranges from the travel stories of the Bible and the ancient Greeks to 20th century authors and adventurers like Patrick Leigh Fermor and Bruce Chatwin.
Published since 06 Jan 2012
When my accountant said, “Hey, you’ve had another good year,” my response was, “You’ve got to be kidding!” But then, looking back, I remembered some happy referrals, several fascinating consignments and, in general, quite a bit of successful book scouting. Ten Pound Island’s invoices and check stubs (all digital!) told the story in detail. My "new business model," concocted so painfully over the past year, paid off. I dropped the California, Florida, and New York book fairs, cut expenses way back, moved from hard copy to web based catalogs, and quoted a lot more books using specially tailored, richly illustrated e-based catalogs.
Published since 07 Dec 2011
If you want to collect first editions of travel narratives, first mentions of certain places or peoples, or if you are simply interested in the fascinating explorations made in the second half of the 19th and early 20th century, you should look into: Petermanns Geographische Mittheilungen.
Published since 25 Nov 2011
Travelling animals have a long history. It is probable that our early ancestors, nomadic people, were accompanied by dogs, who helped them hunt, watched the camps and kept them company. They considered themselves as parts of a pack, where everyone had his place or duty. Cats arrived on the scene rather later, and, by their very nature, thought of themselves not as helpers of humans, but as co-inhabitants. They kept rodents down, slept by the fire and allowed humans to worship them. Things have not changed much since then. On the right you can see Marmalade, our 21st century tomcat who, rightly so, expected to be worshipped as much as his Egyptian ancestors.
Published since 11 Aug 2011The polar regions have always had a huge attraction for mankind and its explorers. What lay in or beyond those icy wastes? An open sea? The way to Asia? Many set out to find out, never to return. Probably no other field of exploration has brought forth so many heroes, sung and unsung, so much suffering and so many, often unnecessary, deaths. Probably most of the gruesome deaths in the icy reaches will never be known or told, but several made it into print from the 16th to the 20th century. I have picked some expeditions at random, my only criterion being that there had to be horrible suffering, death, and, if possible, cannibalism. Part II featuring Robert Falcon Scott, Vitus Bering, Umberto Nobile, Hjalmar Johansen, Alfred Wegener.
Published since 29 Jun 2011
The polar regions have always had a huge attraction for mankind and its explorers. What lay in or beyond those icy wastes? An open sea? The way to Asia? Riches beyond the dreams of avarice? Many set out to find out, never to return. Probably no other field of exploration has brought forth so many heroes, sung and unsung, so much suffering and so many, often unnecessary, deaths. Probably most of the gruesome deaths in the icy reaches will never be known or told, but several made it into print from the 16th to the 20th century. I have picked 10 expeditions at random, my only criterion being that there had to be horrible suffering, death, and, maybe, cannibalism.
Published since 22 Jun 2011
It’s a nice coincidence that printing with movable type was being introduced in the same century as European travellers were setting out to explore Africa and the New World. The three areas first discovered and hence written about in sub-Saharan Africa were west Africa – the Guinea coast; the Congo – an area extending for some considerable area around the mouth of the Congo river; and the Land of Prester John – Abyssinia or Ethiopia. (Prester John was to the Europeans of the middle ages a fabulous Christian monarch ruling somewhere in the East.)