The dread and envy of them all

In the wake of the British “Brexit” vote that not only begins the process of withdrawing from the European Union, but also potentially triggers the break-up of the United Kingdom, the libretto to a piece of eighteenth-century theatre illustrates the tangled history of Britain and Europe. In 1700, England faced a succession crisis: twelve years previously, the Roman Catholic king James II had been ousted by his daughter, Mary Stuart and her husband, the Dutch Protestant William of Orange. They … Continued


Trending on Biblio: The First Bible printed in America

The Aitken Bible, The Bible of the Revolution - the first Bible printed in America - trending on Biblio.com #rarebooks
The Bible of the Revolution
The Aitken Bible, The Bible of the Revolution - an early American printed Bible trending on Biblio.com #rarebooks
Interior page with provenance of previous owners.

The Aitken Bible was the first Bible printed in America.

The first complete Bible in the newly formed nation was printed in Philadelphia in 1782 by Robert Aiken, although there had been copies of the Bible printed when the land was still considered British colonies, as well as copies printed in German.

THE HOLY BIBLE, CONTAINING THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS: NEWLY TRANSLATED OUT OF THE ORIGINAL TONGUES; AND WITH THE FORMER TRANSLATIONS DILIGENTLY COMPARED AND REVISED

Printed and sold by Robert Aitken, this Bible was created in response to a shortage of the Holy Book on American soil due to the embargo on goods from England during the American Revolution.  The Continental Congress itself endorsed the creation of this Bible, leading to this often being called “The Bible of the Revolution.

This specific edition that everyone has been looking at so far today is listed on Biblio by William Reese Company – Americana.

Read more about this specific listing here, including details on its condition, provenence, and history.

Now Trending...

 

Amber is the current marketing coordinator at Biblio. A lifelong love of the written word brought her to Biblio and she happily spends her days talking about books and delving into the wide world of antiquarian books.

You can also find her in the garden or writing about brewing and plant adventures at Pixie’s Pocket.


Biblio offering CABS scholarship to a Bookseller

A talk by Michael Suarez, titled "Ecosystems of Value: Thinking about the Circulation of Antiquarian Books"
A talk by Michael Suarez, titled “Ecosystems of Value: Thinking about the Circulation of Antiquarian Books”

In support of Biblio’s commitment to excellence in bookselling, we are pleased to once again pay the tuition for a bookseller to attend the Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar.

The Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar is one of the single greatest resources available for professional booksellers of every experience level to increase their knowledge.

This is the eighth year that Biblio has offered a bookseller a scholarship to attend the Seminar. Biblio’s scholarship awards:

  • The full cost of tuition for the Seminar
  • $250 toward accommodations at the facilities provided by the seminar
  • $250 donation to a non-profit of the winner’s choice which promotes literacy and/or education
  • One year of Biblio’s lowest commission option with all monthly fees rebated.

Past scholarship recipients have reported the amazing depth of information available during this 5 day event, and we are proud to be able to help booksellers attend.

To apply, please provide:

  • A few paragraphs on why you hope to attend the Colorado Antiquarian Book Seminar. (no more than one single-spaced page)
  • A brief description of the charity you would choose to receive the donation and why you chose them (no more than one single-spaced page)

Email your entry to scholarship@biblio.com by May 30, 2016.
We’ll announce a winner by June 10th.

Amber is the current marketing coordinator at Biblio. A lifelong love of the written word brought her to Biblio and she happily spends her days talking about books and delving into the wide world of antiquarian books.

You can also find her in the garden or writing about brewing and plant adventures at Pixie’s Pocket.


The Works of Harper Lee

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Nelle Harper Lee was born in Monroeville, Alabama on April 28, 1926, and she passed away in her hometown earlier today, February 19, 2016.

Harper Lee was best known for the novel To Kill a Mockingbird, which was published in 1960. It was immediately successful, winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1961, and has become a classic of modern American literature.  She remained out of the public eye for decades afterwards, and did not publish anything else until 2015, a sequel to Mockingbird: Go Set a Watchman in 2015. (more…)


Roald Dahl: a family builds a love of books

Danny, Champion of the World by Roald Dahl, illus. Quentin Blake

Our Roald Dahl collection started entirely by accident, but that’s often the case when collecting books, isn’t it?

When I married my husband, I had a son from a previous relationship. As is expected, the two hadn’t quite found the moment that clicked between them. My son was preschool age and generally regarded my husband as the tall, odd man that fed and bathed him. My husband was (is) a tall, odd man who wanted nothing more than to lavish his new stepson with all manner of love and be-spoil-ment. Then one night, purely by chance or else divine intervention, I got called into work to cover a late shift.

I got home right as bath-time was accomplished, pajamas administered, and my son was running down the hall to pick out a bedtime story. Normally I did story-time in his room, squatting awkwardly next to his tiny bed, but I was content to watch and see how my husband might do things differently.

When my son came pelting out of his room with no books in hand and swerved for the living room of our tiny apartment, I nearly stopped him. I’m glad I didn’t. (more…)

Pru is a North Carolina native, transplanted to the bustling base of South Carolina’s tiny share of the Blue Ridge Mountains, where she tag-teams with her husband to herd two brilliant boys and two cats.

When she’s not busy blogging with Biblio or toiling over original works, you can most likely find her speeding around in the mountains, blasting egregiously loud music and singing off-key.

Despite being fresh in the bookselling scene, she’s been a insatiable reader since forever, and will point you to her love for Oscar Wilde and Jane Austen, while tucking Neil Gaiman and Douglas Adams behind her back and shushing them. Honestly, she’ll read anything you put in front of her. Help support her writing career via Patreon


$35k copy of the Principia sold on Biblio

$35k copy of the Principia: Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica by Sir Isaac Newton is the most expensive book sold on Biblio in 2015.
$35,000, 2nd edition of the Principia

Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica by Sir Isaac Newton is the most expensive book sold on Biblio in 2015.

Our booksellers find new homes for their unusual, rare, and often beautiful books on Biblio. There are hundreds and thousands of books that are sold each and every day, but one recent sale caught our attention.

How could it not? At $35,000, this is one of the most expensive books ever sold on Biblio.

And beyond the price, the Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica is nothing to scoff at!  Translated as “Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy,” this groundbreaking work was written in 1687 by Sir Isaac Newton. It is in this work that Newton first stated his laws of motion. It is considered one of the most important works in the history of science and it revolutionized the study of physics.

Two more editions of The Principia were published in Newton’s lifetime – in 1713 and 1726.  The second edition of the Principia included updated chapters, a new preface, and a General Scholium by Newton. It was one of the 750 copies of the 1713 editions which just gained a new owner through Biblio.

Amber is the current marketing coordinator at Biblio. A lifelong love of the written word brought her to Biblio and she happily spends her days talking about books and delving into the wide world of antiquarian books.

You can also find her in the garden or writing about brewing and plant adventures at Pixie’s Pocket.


Svetlana Alexievich Awarded 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature

Belarussian writer Svetlana Alexievich is seen during a book fair in Minsk, Belarus, in 2014. Photograph: Reuters
Belarussian writer Svetlana Alexievich is seen during a book fair in Minsk, Belarus, in 2014. Photograph: Reuters

The Swedish Academy awarded Svetlana Alexievich the Nobel Prize in Literature today, Thursday, October 8, 2015.

The Belarussian journalist and prose writer is the 14th woman to win the Nobel Prize for Literature, and she is also one of the first nonfiction writers. Alexievich is best known for her works about female Russian soldiers, the aftermath of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, and the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.

The Nobel Prize in Literature is given in recognition of a writer’s entire body of work rather than a single title. The Swedish Academy praised Alexievich’s collections of oral histories and “polyphonic writings” as a “monument to suffering and courage in our time”.

Sources:

The Guardian: Svetlana Alexievich wins 2015 Nobel prize in literature

NY Times: Svetlana Alexievich Wins Nobel Prize in Literature

Rare Finds are a special feature from Biblio and the wonderful writers at Fine Books & Collections. Visit their site to see more about the rare book trade.

A Brief History of the Dust Jacket

As most collectors are aware, a dust jacket in fine condition can greatly enhance the value of a book. Indeed, for modern first editions, a book without the dust jacket will sell for only a fraction of the price. Once intended to be temporary and disposable protection for beautifully bound books, dust jackets have become–in some ways–more valuable than the books they protect. How and when did this change occur? Prior to the 1820s, most books were issued as unbound … Continued


The Great Omar: The Jewel of Sangorski & Sutcliffe

Sangorski & Sutcliffe is an extremely well-known bookbinding firm. Founded in London in 1901, they are especially known for their sumptuous bindings. (You can learn more about Sangorski & Sutcliffe and see examples of their work in our gallery). The practice of binding books with exquisite jeweled bindings was popular in the Middle Ages, but Sangorski & Sutcliffe resurrected the craft. Their books were bound in intricately inlaid multicolored leather, and often set with real gold, jewels, and semi-precious stones. Their most famous work was The Great Omar … Continued


Thoreau Institute Obtains Major Collection of Rare Books & Manuscripts

draft manuscript leaf of Thoreau's Walden
A draft manuscript leaf of Thoreau’s Walden, in which he writes, “Oh Baker Farm!” Courtesy of the Walden Woods Project.

The Thoreau Institute at Walden Woods, a research facility that holds the most comprehensive collection of Henry David Thoreau-related material in one place, has acquired what its curator of collections Jeffrey S. Cramer calls “a dream collection, the last truly great Thoreau collection in private hands.” The collection was amassed over 45 years by bookseller Kevin Mac Donnell of Mac Donnell Rare Books in Austin, Texas.

The highlights are thrilling: A Walden first edition–“the cleanest copy in existence,” says Cramer–plus Thoreau’s Aunt Maria’s annotated copy of A Week on the Concord and Merrimack, two manuscript leaves from his “Walking” essay, unbound sheets of “Civil Disobedience,” two books from Thoreau’s personal library, Thoreau family pencils, and unrecorded variant editions. Topping all of those is an extremely rare manuscript leaf from Walden that references Baker Farm (seen below). “That sold it for us,” says Cramer. Baker Farm is where the Thoreau Institute is located, so it feels very much “like it’s coming back home,” he adds. (more…)

Rare Finds are a special feature from Biblio and the wonderful writers at Fine Books & Collections. Visit their site to see more about the rare book trade.