Skip to content

Search by tag: fantastic bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 33: a 19th century gem designed by John Leighton

Another 19th century beauty makes it to the bindings list this week: the 1863 photo-illustrated edition of Sir Walter Scott’s The lady of the lake. This book is wonderfully bound in blind stamped green fabric with a raised and gold-stamped full cover design. The design incorporates four lines from the poem and many naturalistic elements…

27 January 2012bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 32: A Gothic heavy-weight

This week’s fantastic binding was first brought to my attention by our reading room staff when they posted some photographs of it on our Facebook page. This stunning Gothic binding is found on the 1846 printing of the Missale Romanum, published by Sacrae Congregationis de Propaganda Fide (or the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of…

19 January 2012bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 31: a gift from the Archbishop of Canterbury, George Abbot

Our collections, like most historic collections, are littered with hundreds of armorial stamped bindings, ranging from the 16th to 19th century. These bindings are wonderful for cataloguers and researchers, as we can, with some certainty, place where an individual book was during a certain time period. This week’s binding highlight comes from our incunabula collection…

13 January 2012bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 30: 16th century Hebrew text bound in a leaf of a 12th or 13th century manuscript

This week’s binding post caught my eye as I was reshelving some items. As you can see in the picture above, this book stands out a bit: it’s quite a common to find leaves of manuscripts used as fly-leaves and binding waste, but, especially in our collection, it’s not so common to find a book…

5 January 2012bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 29: Conservators at work

What better way to bring in the New Year than dedicating our last binding post of 2011 to those who take our old stuff and make it new(ish) again: conservators! Like many historic collections, one can spend almost as much time identifying eras in binding trends as you can eras in book conservation trends in…

28 December 2011bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 28: A 16th century classic beautifully rebound in the 19th century

This week’s fantastic binding is hard to miss when your sifting through the stacks of 16th century Italian books. Most of our books in the Italian portion of the Typographical Collection are either contemporarily bound (usually in calf, vellum or sheep) or were modestly rebound in the 19th or 20th century. Our copy of Boneto…

22 December 2011bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 27: The biggest incunabula on our shelves

This week’s binding gem is hard to miss and it is in the queue to be recatalogued fully in the next few weeks, but I couldn’t resist sharing it with you now. Our copy of Anton Koberger’s 1483 printing of Vincent of Beauvais’ Speculum historiale is a monster: it is close to 45 cm tall…

16 December 2011bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 26: A 15th century edition of Josephus bound in near contemporary reverse sheep with a cover title inside a horn window

Sometimes you can tell a book by its cover. This book caught my eye as I was pulling some items from the incunabula section because of the strange look of its covering material. It is the 1486 Venetian printing of Flavius Josephus’s Opera, bound with a 1492 printing of Seneca’s Opera. Not only is this…

7 December 2011bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings, Week 25: the earliest Swedish book in our collection, bound in Sweden c. 1577

This week’s binding gem is the Rare Book Collection’s only recorded early (pre-1900) Swedish imprint: Archbishop Laurentius Petri’s Then Swenska Kyrkeordningen, printed in Stockholm by Amund Laurentsson, 1571 [TypSweS.B71LL]. I noticed this book because it is the last book in the physical run of the Typographical Collection, and its front cover was peaking over the…

2 December 2011bindings

52 Weeks of Fantastic Bindings: Week 24

Thorlak’s Bible, the second edition of the Bible in Icelandic, bound in contemporary leather with beautiful clasps and endpapers I stumbled across this fascinating book while I was photographing the library’s copy of the first edition of the King James Bible (Bib BS185.C11) for a previous announcement. St Andrews copy at Bib BS248.C44, better known…

25 November 2011bindings