Love me do

Love me do

25th February 2021

Years ago, in my final year as a undergraduate, I took a course on the medieval German epic. I was attracted by the idea of reading old German texts–Tristan and Isolde, Wolfram von Eschenbach‘s Parzival, the Nibelungenlied–although I soon wondered whether the choice was such a good idea when I realised quite how long they […]

Visiting Walhalla

Visiting Walhalla

19th February 2021

Yesterday, the ABA’s virtual book fair Firsts Online opened. The first day went quite well, and I sold a number of things, so I have just uploaded a few new items, among them this: Published in Munich in 1845, it’s a copy of the first edition in English of Walhalla’s Genossen (1842; second edition, 1847), […]

The Pursuit of Happiness

The Pursuit of Happiness

11th February 2021

Last year, I issued two joint catalogues (At Home with Books and CTRL+P) with my good friends, the booksellers Justin Croft, Heather O’Donnell, and Ben Kinmont.  Entering what would ordinarily be the new book fair season (California, New York, Paris), but still stuck at home, we thought it would be nice to collaborate again. We met […]

Bronze-varnish paper

Bronze-varnish paper

4th February 2021

Over on We Love Endpapers, Twitter, and Instagram all this week, I’ve been sharing examples of bronze-varnish paper, in part because it is often misidentified by booksellers and cataloguers (in the English-speaking world, at least) and I thought some photos might prove useful. Bronze-varnish paper (Bronzefirnispapier in German) was made in Augsburg between about 1690 […]

Auld Lang Syne

Auld Lang Syne

29th January 2021

As it was Burns Night earlier this week, I thought I’d share the following: ‘During the last eight years of his life, Burns directed most of his talents to the writing of songs.  Though there are a few songs in the 1786 Kilmarnock and 1787 Edinburgh Poems, it may be doubted whether Burns ever thought […]

Great Scott

Great Scott

22nd January 2021

This year is the 250th anniversary of the birth of Sir Walter Scott, the great Scottish writer. A few years ago, I managed to visit his house, Abbotsford, when I was up in Edinburgh for the book fair. Sadly, the fair didn’t take place last year, but hopefully it will be back later in 2021. […]