Glasgow Incunabula Project update (13/12/12)

by bibliodeviant

University of Glasgow Library

Auctions have historically played a central role in the world of incunabula collecting, acting as an important mechanism for re-distributing books to new homes. One of the items featured in the most recent batch added to the project website (a ca. 1475 copy of Conradus de Mure’s Fabularius) was sold at one of the most memorable auctions of the 19th century – the dispersal of Richard Heber’s vast library in the 1830s.

Heber was a true 19th-century ‘bibliomaniac’ with, according to his friend and fellow book-addict Thomas Frognall Dibdin, ‘an ungovernable passion’ for collecting.  At his death in 1833 his library was estimated to comprise somewhere in the region of 150,000 books spread over several sites: two houses in London, a house in Shropshire, a London bookseller’s store (for new acquisitions) and numerous different European cities (including fifteen or sixteen rooms of a large Parisian hotel!)…

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