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Bibliography is not for the Faint of Heart

One of the most fun aspects of studying books is determining how they are constructed and what makes them different from other books, even when printed at the same time by the same printer. That’s one of the joys of bibliography. Another is identifying each physical book’s idiosyncrasies or unique aspects so a collector or … Continue reading

Fixated on Bibles

You’ll think I’m crazy to keep looking at Bibles, but they are magnificent. I’m really getting into looking at these incunabula. Today, August 28th, I went to the American Bible Society http://www.americanbible.org/, just off Columbus Circle. They have more than 40,000 bibles in their library in 2400 different languages. 42 of the bibles are incunabula. … Continue reading

Illustrated incunabula

Tuesday I had the pleasure of paging through two different copies of Schonsperger’s 1487 Bible, printed in German and illustrated with woodcuts by HB (maybe Hans Bamler according to the cataloging record), who copied the famous Quentell woodcuts.  These woodcuts are the ones you see in most bibles of the time period illustrating famous scenes … Continue reading

It’s all about the Prep

There’s one more week until this Rare Book and Special Collections Librarianship course begins. That means I’m busy taping introductory lectures, re-reading the first week’s articles, and putting the finishing touches on the course. The syllabus is done and mounted in BB Learn and on my website http://www.mbkcons.com/Courses/Rare60665/RaresylFall2012.htm . Except for some tweaks, that is … Continue reading

Incunabula are amazing

I spent Wednesday looking at incunabula at NYPL. They have over 900 of the precious works and a huge collection of bibles. As you know I’ve been working on a study involving incunable Bibles and decided that I would continue to work on it as an entry into a variety of rare book rooms across … Continue reading

Searching for examples

After many weeks and months of preparing this RB course, I’m finally ready to work on lectures and exercises. Since this is the first time I’m teaching the course online I had to make some adjustments and design some exercises to do at home. Knowing we’ll have two days to work together definitely helps and … Continue reading

Promenading along the tree lined shore

This morning I headed out to explore the Promenade and take photos of the shore. I couldn’t resist and neither could all the tourists vying for space at the railings to take photos. Imagine living two blocks from NYC Bay. It’s absolutely beautiful. As I walk down Clark Street, I encounter interesting facades. Today I … Continue reading

Day 3 – what’s better than books?

On Day 3, that was yesterday, I headed into Manhattan to the New York Public Library Astor Tilden and Lenox Foundation. The main Research libraries are now called the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building. Patience and Fortitude still gaze out from their majestic height over the city.  But yesterday, I entered through the Bryant Park doors … Continue reading

Day 4 – I’m already behind

I cannot believe I’ve been here four days already. They have been full days of walking, working on my class, and more walking.  Tuesday I decided to check out my local branch of the Brooklyn Public Library http://www.brooklynpubliclibrary.org/  in Brooklyn Heights. http://www.brooklynpubliclibrary.org/locations/brooklyn-heights  There was a reference department on the ground floor which had business materials … Continue reading

First Impressions

I arrived in Brooklyn on Sunday and immediately set off to explore this historic neighborhood. Settled in the 1600s, this area was British when New Amsterdam became New-York in 1664. There is an amazing mix of colonial buildings, eighteenth and nineteenth century dwellings and brownstones, and some modern twentieth century structures, block square apartment buildings … Continue reading