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

  • Photographically illustrated Books

    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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  • Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Thomas Paine

    Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Thomas Paine

    January 29 is the birthday of early American political activist Thomas Paine (1737), whose pamphlet Common Sense (1776) credited with inspiring American colonists to embrace the idea of independence from Great Britain. The American Revolution had already started but the work served to spur volunteers for the Continental Army. It was widely distributed throughout the colonies, read aloud in taverns, and unabashedly pirated. Some scholars say it was the first American bestseller.

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  • The History of the Antiquarian Book Trade in Belgium – A New Book by Piet J. Buijnsters

    The History of the Antiquarian Book Trade in Belgium – A New Book by Piet J. Buijnsters

    Nowhere in Europe you will find so many bibliophiles than in Belgium, and you will find no other place in Europe where all those stunning collections of rare books and manuscripts have more or less been kept in secret.  Until now! Piet J. Buijnster’s recently published book  “Geschiedenis van antiquariaat en bibliofilie in België“ provides an overall view of the rare book trade in Belgium from the year 1830 up to 2012. After Buijnster’s studies on the history of bibliophily and antiquarian bookselling in the Netherlands, published in the years 2007 and 2010, this important work fills a gap in the research of the history of the book and the book trade in Europe.

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  • „The Heart of Africa“ - Early Adventures and Expeditions. Second "Bibliophile Evening" at Dr. Paul Kainbacher Rare Books

    „The Heart of Africa“ - Early Adventures and Expeditions. Second "Bibliophile Evening" at Dr. Paul Kainbacher Rare Books

    Baden (Vienna), 14th March, 2015 - a must for book collectors who are interested in rare and fine books on travel and expedition. Dr. Paul Kainbacher, Austrian bookseller and specialist on rare travel accounts, natural history and early photographies from exotic places, invites customers and colleague to a Bibliophile Evening dedicated to the history and exploration of the "heart of Africa".

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  • Antiquarian Booksellers in Exile – Pablo Keins (1909 - 1967)

    Antiquarian Booksellers in Exile – Pablo Keins (1909 - 1967)

    The seizure of power by the Nazis in 1933 was a decisive event in the world of book collecting. Numerous dealers and collectors – among them the most famous of the trade – were murdered by the Nazis. Those who survived were forced to close their companies and to hand them over to the Nazis. Ernst Fischer’s biographical handbook "Verleger, Buchhändler & Antiquare aus Deutschland und Österreich in der Emigration nach 1933" reconstructs the biographies of all German and Austrian booksellers, publishers and auctioneers who emigrated from Germany after 1933. The International League of Antiquarian Booksellers is proud to publish some of the most impressive stories told in Ernst Fischer’s book on its website. This article in a series of 25 booksellers' biographies is dedicated to Pablo Keins.

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  • Collecting Mary Grant Bruce

    Mary Grant Bruce wrote a total of 38 major works, beginning with A Little Bush Maid in 1910 and ending with Billabong Riders in 1942. All were published by Ward Lock & Co of London. Although it included others, the centrepiece of her main body of work was the immensely popular Billabong series, in which there were fifteen novels ...

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  • The President on Safari - Dublin’s Fair City

    The President on Safari - Dublin’s Fair City

    Laurence Worms, President of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association (ABA), promised the ABA members that he would travel around the British Isles to see as many of his colleagues as possible. He publishes his travel accounts in his blog “The President on Safari”. This is Laurence Worms' report about the legendary Irish hospitality and a very special trip to Dublin.

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  • In the Press - US Returns To Sweden Millions in Antique Books Stolen by Suicidal Librarian

    In the Press - US Returns To Sweden Millions in Antique Books Stolen by Suicidal Librarian

    In the 1990s rare and valuable 17th century books were stolen from the National Library of Sweden. Now some of them have been returned to Sweden with the help of two American antiquarian booksellers. The official repatriation ceremony took place in Manhattan, New York. (Reblogged from The Art Newspaper)

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  • Bob Fleck – Awarded With the ILAB Medal

    Bob Fleck – Awarded With the ILAB Medal

    Was that it? Was Bob’s involvement in ILAB finished and done with? Oh no! ILAB needed a Treasurer capable of taking its accounting system into the 21st Century and turned once more to Bob Fleck to take on this difficult and not so enchanting job, which he took on in April 2014. He worked relentlessly during a year and a half, until the Seville Presidents’ Meeting in October 2015, to put all the accounts in order and once the job was brilliantly done … he resigned, having been asked to head New Castle’s Historical Society, and for once in his life, he could not be able to find the time to work, rest, and work and work again and again. To thank him, once more, and perhaps not for the last time, for his devotion to ILAB matters, Bob Fleck was awarded during the 2015 October Seville Presidents’ Meeting with the ILAB Medal, engraved on its back: “In recognition of services rendered to the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers.”

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  • Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Robert Frost’s First Book

    Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Robert Frost’s First Book

    Robert Frost wasn’t much of a farmer but he loved living on a farm. Though he was born in the city (San Francisco), some of his formative years were spent on his grandfather’s farm in Massachusetts. Indeed, much of his poetry seems influenced by his rural life.

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

    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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  • Book Scouting in Japan - Introduction: The Back Story

    Book Scouting in Japan - Introduction: The Back Story

    Rare book dealer and photography specialist Harper Levine travels through Japan with photographer John Gossage where Harper was welcomed at the airport as the “best book dealer (also best blogger) from East Hampton”. Bibliophiles may follow his book scouting traces in Tokyo reading his fabulous blog.

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