Sunday, January 12, 2014

Links & Reviews

- Over at The Millions, Travis McDade on Rare Book Crime Capers: Forgery, Theft, Murder and the Holy Grail of American Printing. McDade concentrates on Hofmann's forgery of the Oath of a Freeman and its intersection with other instances of rare book crime.

- Ben Mauk posted on the New Yorker blog about Elaine Treharne's recent work on medieval manuscripts being dismantled and sold on eBay. It includes comments from dealer Philip Pirages, who said "I have to admit that selling individual leaves encourages book breaking to some extent. From time to time I feel it would be better if I didn't do this."

- The latest issue of Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada, with the theme "What is the History of (Electronic) Books?" is now freely available on the BSC's website.

- For your amusement, Dusty Archive Kitten Deaths, a new Tumblr highlighting (and let's be frank, shaming) archival/library cliches and the journalists who perpetuate them.

- At Unique at Penn, some neat and elusive pieces of print found on the pastedowns of a manuscript commonplace book.

- From BibliOdyssey, monograms and ciphers.

- The Wellcome Library recently acquired a remarkable 15th-century folding almanac in a silk binding. Lots of pictures and context here.

- There was quite a dustup last week over the apparent destruction of a series of Franklin County, NC records found in the courthouse basement. In the end most of the records appeared to have been destroyed pursuant to regular retention schedules (see the response from the NC Office of Archives and History, as well as a public letter to the same effect).


- Hugh Wilford's America's Great Game; review by Tony Perry in the LATimes.

- Richard Drake's The Education of an Anti-Imperialist; review by Lewis Gould in the WSJ.

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