Category Archive: Bookseller

Jean-Baptiste Letourmy (1747–1800): block-cutter and businessman

Jean-Baptiste Letourmy (1747–1800): block-cutter and businessman

20th March 2024

Orléans was a major eighteenth-century centre for the production of both block-printed papers (papiers dominotés) and popular prints (imagerie populaire), cut from wood, inked, printed, then stencilled by hand.  Jean-Baptiste Letourmy (also Letourmi, 1747–1800), was both dominotier—‘un des très grands producteurs de papiers dominotés de son temps’ (Valérie Hubert, Les papiers dominotés, 2016, p. 34)—and […]

‘The erotics of book collecting’

‘The erotics of book collecting’

11th March 2024

I am currently getting ready to exhibit at the New York book fair, which takes place in a few weeks’ time. One book I shall have with me is this: It also has wonderful Jugendstil endpapers: It’s a German edition of Jane Eyre, published in Vienna in 1902. Lynne Tatlock, in her recent book, Jane […]

Early English lithography

Early English lithography

31st January 2024

Like many colleagues in the trade, I’m currently gearing up for the California book fair next week. One thing I shall be exhibiting in San Francisco is this, Henry Bernard Chalon’s (1770–1849) ‘famous stone of Wild Horses’ (Man, p. 107), his only early lithograph, for Vollweiler’s Specimens of Polyautography (Part III, 1806; see below).  ‘The […]

A little book with a very long title

A little book with a very long title

18th January 2024

I’m currently getting everything ready for the California book fair, and have already drawn up a list of things I shall be exhibiting at the fair. One is the little book above (I’ve blown it up, so you can read the title-page; the actual book measures 172 × 101 mm): a rare chapbook published in […]

The Three Kings

The Three Kings

10th January 2024

I have recently started reading Gaudy Night by Dorothy L. Sayers. A number of people have recommended it to me over the years and I have finally got round to getting a copy. It made me think of other things she wrote. One of my favourite works by her is not a crime novel at […]

Marbled cloth

Marbled cloth

24th October 2023

Everyone’s heard of marbled paper. You see it all the time on old books. But how about marbled cloth? Here’s a nice example on the first edition in English of Mallet du Pan‘s Memoirs and Correspondence (London, Bentley, 1852). Cloth bindings by this time were standard, so publishers sought to appeal to potential book buyers […]