Sunday, May 26, 2019

Links & Reviews

- An Alexander Hamilton letter stolen from the Massachusetts Archives before 1950 is now in the custody of the FBI after an auction house employee charged with researching the provenance alerted the Massachusetts Archives and law enforcement. See coverage in the AP, NYTimesSmithsonian, and the WaPo.

- From Aaron Pratt on the HRC blog, "Gutenberg Misbound."

- The National Library of Israel has received a tranche of some 5,000 Max Brod documents from Germany. These had been stolen from the apartment of Brod's secretary, Esther Hoffe, about a decade ago.

- The judge's copy of Lady Chatterley's Lover, sold at auction last year, is now subject to a temporary export ban to allow a UK buyer to match the £56,250 price. English PEN has launched a crowdfunding effort, which has raised more than £18,000 as of this morning. 

- In The Yale Globalist, Alma Bitran on "The Voynich Manuscript: Finding Meaning in Meaninglessness." And in other—completely unsurprising—Voynich news, Bristol University is now walking (running?) back claims that a researcher based there had solved the mystery of the manuscript. See the Bristol University statement as well.

- A report in the Ithaca Journal reveals that National Book Auctions is the subject of a state attorney general's investigation, which has determined that the auction house defrauded at least 115 customers of sums totaling more than $1 million.

- Liz Broadwell writes for the Penn Rare Books blog about finding some Bohemian silver coins tucked into a numismatic treatise!

- Over on the New Zealand National Library blog, Simon Grigg writes about the process of digitizing the music magazine Rip It Up.

- A manuscript diary documenting the last days of seventeenth-century Dutch statesman Johan van Oldenbarnevelt has turned up, nearly two centuries after it was last documented.

- At Medieval Manuscripts Provenance, "A Dismembered Book of Hours Once Owned by Count Durrieu," "Another 'Spanish' Forger?" and "Another 'Spanish' Forger?: An Addendum."

- From Simon Newman at The Collation, "'Run away': a life in 78 words."

- On the BL's Medieval Manuscripts blog, "Cataloguing the Harley manuscripts."

- Abbie Weinberg offers a great book snakes primer at The Collation.

- Author Ian Rankin has donated his personal archive to the National Library of Scotland.


- Leo Damrosch's The Club; review by Jenny Uglow in the NYRB.

- Brenda Wineapple's The Impeachers; review by John Fabian Witt in the WaPo.

Upcoming Auctions

- Reliures Originales & Livres Illustrés Modernes at ALDE on 28 May.

- Rare Books & Works on Paper at Chiswick Auctions on 29 May.

- Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper at Forum Auctions on 30 May.

- Fine Books & Manuscripts – Food & Drink at PBA Galleries on 30 May.

- Autographs & Memorabilia at Chiswick Auctions on 30 May.

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