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How Much Is My Rare Book Worth?

By Audrey Golden. Feb 11, 2020. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting, Rare Book Gift Ideas

Determining the value of a book or an ephemeral object can be very difficult. While certain texts are highly sought after under almost any circumstances, some items can be very tricky. Some old books are extremely valuable, yet some old books have almost no market value at all. Some books with inscriptions have significant market value, while many books with personal or sentimental notes have little to no market value. Although the condition of a book will almost always impact the object’s value on the market, some books in quite poor condition can still be extremely valuable depending upon the provenance. In short, determining a rare book’s value is typically a holistic enterprise that involves taking into account many different factors.

If you have a book that you believe to be rare and to have significant market value, you should get in touch with a rare bookseller who can properly appraise the object for you. In the meantime, we want to provide you with some of the key elements that go into determining the value of a rare book or paper object.

     
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How Do I Establish a Rare Book Collection?

By Audrey Golden. Jan 29, 2020. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting, Collecting guide

Are you thinking about starting a rare book collection? The prospect of establishing a collection of rare books, ephemera, and other print objects can be daunting when you do not have much background knowledge about the subject. Yet we want to emphasize that anyone can create a rare book collection. If you have an interest in rare books and the desire to establish a collection, you’re already on your way. We want to give you some important tips concerning the logistics of starting your collection.

     
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What is a Rare Book?

By Audrey Golden. Jan 15, 2020. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting, Collecting guide

We often hear about people who are starting or adding to rare book collections, but it can be difficult to know exactly what counts as a “rare” book. Indeed, you may find yourself wondering: What is a rare book? The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) defines something that is “rare” in a variety of ways, and some of them certainly apply to rare books. For example, the OED defines a rare object as “a thing or things . . . occurring infrequently, encountered only occasionally or at intervals, uncommon,” or “of a kind seldom found, done or occurring; unusual, uncommon, exceptional.” These definitions can help us to understand why a book might be rare—it is found infrequently, is uncommon to see or to hold, and is exceptional in some capacity. Yet, as you might guess, not all rare books are exceptional in the same ways.

     
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Umberto Eco as Consummate Book Collector

By Kristin Masters. Jan 5, 2020. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Umberto Eco, Rare Books, Book Collecting

Umberto Eco made quite a name for himself as a philosopher, author, and semiotician. He also earned a reputation for being an enthusiastic collector of rare books. Eco amassed tens of thousands of books, and always observed that he hadn't read most of them. Yet his personal library played an important role for him as a writer, informing his books with a uniqueand fascinatingintertextual layer.

     
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Luciano Pavarotti: Legendary Tenor and Humanitarian

By Abigail Bekx. Oct 12, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting

Opera seldom finds a place in modern society. Often placed firmly in the not-for-general-consumption category, it seldom finds listeners in the general public. During his life, Luciano Pavorotti helped bring opera back to the front of modern music. Through his unique voice and collaboration with other popular artists, he showed how opera could be for every listener, not just those who developed an interest in the genre.

     
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How to Prevent Ghosting and Shadowing in Rare Books

By Kristin Masters. Sep 25, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Care

When it comes to rare books, condition is everything. Any kind of damage, discoloration, or flaw can significantly impact a book's value. One of the most common flaws we see in rare and antiquarian books is a condition called ghosting or shadowing. This condition occurs when a page fades unevenly, leaving a visible outline on the page.

     
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Collect What Your Kids Read

By Kristin Masters. Sep 3, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting, Biographies

It's that time of year! Kids are headed back to school, and for students of all ages that means required reading is right around the corner. Perhaps you only vaguely remember The Odyssey, Romeo and Juliet, and Lord of the Flies. But classroom staples can offer inspiration for enhancing your rare book collection.

     
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Sunning: Bad for Your Skin, Bad for Your Books!

By Kristin Masters. Aug 28, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting, Book Care

Summer is in full swing, and along with all that sun comes the joy of summer reading! But the sun can cause irreversible damage to your skin⁠—and your books. It's important to protect your rare and collectible books from heat, humidity, and sunning.

     
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Print Making Processes: Relief and Intaglio

By Shelley Kelber. Jun 11, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Making

There are four major classes of printmaking techniques: relief printing, intaglio printmaking, stenciling, and lithography. Let’s look into some detail about the relief and intaglio printmaking processes. These are the two oldest and best known of the major classes of printmaking techniques.

     
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Preserving Rare Books: Preventing and Repairing Fire Damage

By Kristin Masters. Jun 5, 2019. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Rare Books, Book Collecting, Book Care

Bookworms, mildew, water. These are the most common culprits of rare book damage. But if you've invested in your personal library, you'll also want to prepare for a more serious threat: fire. Though fires are certainly more rare than other destructive forces, they can cause far more damage.

     
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About this blog

How can I identify a first edition? Where do I learn about caring for books? How should I start collecting? Hear from librarians about amazing collections, learn about historic bindings or printing techniques, get to know other collectors. Whether you are just starting or looking for expert advice, chances are, you'll find something of interest on blogis librorum.

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