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ILAB Library - All You Need To Know About Rare Books and the Antiquarian Book Trade

  • [+] More Book Review - The Book Smugglers of Timbuktu by Charlie English 


    Book Review - The Book Smugglers of Timbuktu by Charlie English
    Published since 28 Jun 2017

    For the bibliophile, Timbuktu is synonymous with the legendary city in the African desert and its legacy of hundreds of thousands of ancient manuscripts.
    The West African city of Timbuktu, in Mali, was established in the 12th century by the Tuareg and gained prominence as a cultural and intellectual centre in the 15th century. 

  • [+] More Yale University Press - The Voynich Manuscript 


    Yale University Press - The Voynich Manuscript
    Published since 27 Apr 2017
    In February 2014, media reported a breakthrough that had been made in attempts to decipher a mysterious 600-year-old manuscript written in an unknown language: The Voynich Manuscript, carbon-dated to the 1400s, was rediscovered in 1912, when the antiquarian bookseller Wilfrid Voynich bought it in Italy as part of a rare book collection. Since then it has defied codebreakers and scientists. The BBC and several news channels reported on the case. 
    Yale University Press has now published the "first authorized copy of this mysterious, much-speculated-upon, one-of-a-kind, centuries-old puzzle." (Yale)
  • [+] More Rebecca Romney's "Printer's Error" just published 


    Rebecca Romney's "Printer's Error" just published
    Published since 14 Mar 2017
    ABAA bookseller and ILAB member Rebecca Romney of Honey & Wax Books, well known for her TV appearances in the History Channel's "Pawn Stars" has just published her first book "Printer's Error - Irreverent Stories from Book History". This book should be a delight to any collector, dealer or bibliophile in general. A wonderful idea to put together a collection of "absurd" moments in the lives of authors and printers throughout book history. 
  • [+] More Dictionaries - Surveying the Territory 


    Dictionaries - Surveying the Territory
    Published since 19 May 2014

    No one has ever compiled a complete catalogue of all of the world’s reference books, and the task won’t be easy. Not all the world’s libraries have been catalogued; not all the library catalogues are available in electronic form; not all the electronic catalogues can be searched from a central location. And sometimes the query is too much for the catalogue. The Library of Congress Online Catalog, when asked to display all its holdings with the word dictionary in the title, comes back with an error message: “Your search retrieved more records than can be displayed. Only the first 10,000 will be shown.” The same thing happens when you search for encyclopedia.

  • [+] More Nominated for the 16th ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography – Jon Gilbert's Ian Fleming Bibliography 


    Nominated for the 16th ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography – Jon Gilbert's Ian Fleming Bibliography
    Published since 19 Sep 2013

    When the 16th ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography will be awarded during the 41st ILAB Congress in April 2014, the Prize Jury will have had to fulfill an almost impossible task. The jury of Felix de Marez Oyens, David Adams, Jean-Marc Chatelain, Arnoud Gerits, Poul Jan Poulsen, and Umberto Pregliasco will have to choose the best book about books from an impressive list of 70 bio-bibliographical works published between 2009 and 2012. Among them is: John Gilbert: Ian Fleming. The Bibliography.

  • [+] More Nominated for the 16th ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography – D. J. Bromer’s Aldous Huxley Bibliography 


    Nominated for the 16th ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography – D. J. Bromer’s Aldous Huxley Bibliography
    Published since 12 Sep 2013

    During the 41st ILAB Congress, preceded by ILAB’s International Antiquarian Book Fair, both in Paris in April 2014, the 16th ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography of 10.000 USD will be awarded.  Since 1967, when Jean Peeters-Fontainas received the first Prize for his outstanding “Bibliographie des impressions Espagnoles aux Pays-Bas méridionaux”, famous scholars have submitted the best books about books. Many of them have become standard works both in scientific research and in the antiquarian book trade.  Seventy books about books have been submitted to the Prize, which has become one of the most prestigious international awards. Among them many bio-bibliographical studies of the life and works of famous authors such as John Gilbert’s highly praised Ian Fleming bibliography or  C. E. Grissom’s, D. C. Smith’s and D. A. Richards’ excellent works on Ernest Hemingway, H. G. Wells and Rudyard Kipling. Another brilliant book is devoted to an author who gave us the image of a “Brave New World”: Aldous Huxley.

  • [+] More GEORGES A. DENY 1920-1999 - Founder and First Secretary of the ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography 


    GEORGES A. DENY 1920-1999 - Founder and First Secretary of the ILAB Breslauer Prize for Bibliography
    Published since 09 Jul 2013

    The ILAB Prize for Bibliography was founded in the early 1960s when  Georges A. Deny was President of the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers. He also became the first Secretary of the Prize which was called Prix Triennal de Bibliographie in the beginnings. The first Prize was not awarded in 1964 due to a lack of quality of the submitted books, as Deny clearly stated in his report of the same year. Thus, since 1967 famous scholars like like Jean Peeters-Fontainas, I. C. Koeman, Claus Nissen,  Anthony Hobson, Lotte Hellinga or  Jan Storm van Leeuwen were honoured with this most prestigious prize in the broad field of bibliography worth 10.000 USD.

  • [+] More Absences - "Lost, Stolen or Shredded": Rick Gekoski's Stories of Missing Works of Art and Literature 


    Absences - "Lost, Stolen or Shredded": Rick Gekoski's Stories of Missing Works of Art and Literature
    Published since 07 May 2013

    As you may already have realised, I like books which have a story to tell.  By this I mean not just the book’s own internal narrative, but a copy of the book with its own individual history.  Not necessarily a fine and obviously important provenance (although that’s always very welcome), but just a tale of its own career in the world.  I’m not deterred by a book with a previous owner’s inscription, far from it – this can lead into that narrative and document some evidence of the book’s initial audience and reception.  Who bought this book when it first came out?  Where did the book fit into that world rather than ours?

  • [+] More It’s a Book - Not an App 


    It’s a Book - Not an App
    Published since 07 Sep 2012

    “Have you ever tried to explain book collecting to someone who’s not a collector? This has never been an easy thing to do, but it seems to be much more difficult now than it was just a few years ago. The problem is not that books are unfamiliar objects, or that collecting is seen as an unusual pursuit. Despite increased competition, books can still be found everywhere, and collectors of all kinds are featured on more television shows than ever before. What makes an explanation of book collecting more difficult now is that the main purposes books have served for more than two thousand years - the storage and provision of information - can be achieved today in many other, and often much less expensive, ways...

  • [+] More Nigel Beale and Tim Bowling in Conversation on Book Collecting, and Bowling’s new Book “In the Suicide’s Library” 


    Nigel Beale and Tim Bowling in Conversation on Book Collecting, and Bowling’s new Book “In the Suicide’s Library”
    Published since 02 Apr 2012

    Twice shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award for Poetry, Tim Bowling has won the Canadian Authors’ Association Award for Poetry and two Alberta Book Awards. Nigel Beale met the author in Ottawa to talk about his new book In the Suicide’s Library. Topics covered include book collecting, coincidence, suicide, the spirit, passion and harmony of books,  the use of hands, the line between bibliophiles and maniacs and the importance of physical books to the culture.

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