Shelf Fulfillment

The Antiquarian Booksellers Association…

Month: January, 2014

Beyond the Old Bailey Online: Archival Sources for Trials

by Laurence Worms - Ash Rare Books

Crime in the Community

We’re often asked how to find out more about defendants than is contained in the digitised Proceedings. This guest post by Chris Barnes explores some of the most significant related records (particularly from the late 18th century onwards) held by The National Archives, London.

On the 10th June 1840 Queen Victoria and Prince Albert took their customary early evening drive up Constitution Hill in an open carriage. The Queen was four months pregnant with their first child and was fond of taking the air. As the carriage made its way around Green Park a young man stepped forward and fired two pistols at the Queen, neither hitting Victoria. The man was immediately disarmed and put up no fight stating ‘It was I, it was me that did it’.

This man was named Edward Oxford. On the 9th July 1840, at the age of 18, he was put…

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Designer Bookbinders – Competition 2013

by Laurence Worms - Ash Rare Books

The Bookhunter on Safari

Designer Bookbinders at St. BrideA jolly, if slightly chaotic, evening at the St. Bride Foundation saw the annual prizes and awards handed out by our friend Glyn Farrow, St. Bride Chief Executive – crocked and on crutches but still astonishingly cheerful after his recent motorbike accident.  The exhibition (open to the public until the 24th January) was downstairs, the jollification and award-giving upstairs, so there were waves of people happily wandering about the warren that is St. Bride all more or less conscious of probably being in the right place at the wrong time.

Good (at least for those of us in London) to have the event back in town after six years away at the Rylands in Manchester – and there was a suitably large and appreciative turnout.  Good also to see some old friends and eventually there were enough people in the same place at the same time for Stephen Conway, President…

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What Counts as Provenance Evidence?

by Laurence Worms - Ash Rare Books

Adversaria: Special Collections Provenance at MSU

The student of provenance is beset by many problems.  Inscriptions in books may be illegible, damaged, defaced, or removed altogether.  Bookplates… may be partly or wholly torn out, or may have other bookplates pasted on top… Many marks of ownership in early books rely on heraldry, an ancient discipline whose arcane codes and terminology are not immediately accessible to many people today.”

– David Pearson, Provenance Research in Book History

Last week, we introduced the concept of rare book provenance, and briefly discussed some of the difficulties involved in its study.  This week, we’re going to be wading even deeper into the pool of provenance issues by asking you, the reader, what you think might be important enough to warrant recording as provenance evidence.  I would hardly consider myself an expert in provenance markers (I’m learning more every day), and much of what I know now I’ve had to…

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