A Gentle Madness: Bibliophiles, Bibliomanes, and the Eternal Passion for Books

ISBN 13: 9780805036534
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I heart Basbanes and all his crazy book lovers. Reading this book made me realize there were other crazy book lovers out there, and we had a name! Nicholas A. The passion to possess books has never been more widespread than it is today; indeed, obsessive book collecting remains the only hobby to have a disease named after it.

A gentle madness : bibliophiles, bibliomanes, and the eternal passion for books

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This specific ISBN edition is currently not available. View all copies of this ISBN edition:. Synopsis About this title A history of book lore, book culture, and book lovers begins in Alexandria more than 2, years ago and passes through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to the present, offering special emphasis on collecting in Great Britain and North America.

Product Description : pages, illustrated Review : Nicholas Basbanes has become our leading authority of books about books. Buy New Learn more about this copy.

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In a medieval poem, Basbanes notes, bibliophiles were assigned a place of honor on the ship of fools. Yet the book lovers seem to have known where they were going. A fascinating account of the great 17th-century diarist Samuel Pepys's collection establishes a predominant motive: creating memorials to the life of the mind.

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Post to Cancel. The book is divided into two large parts. It is a book about bibliophiles and bibliomanes and in itself is a book one could become addicted to. Basbanes is a regular contributor to Biblio , the general interest book collecting magazine, which appears on the counters of antiquarian bookstores. I feel an affinity with people who want to possess books. In a medieval poem, Basbanes notes, bibliophiles were assigned a place of honor on the ship of fools. Jul 22, Iona Stewart rated it it was amazing.

Describing collections now housed in great American research libraries, Basbanes tells the moving tale of the grieving mother who endowed Harvard's Widener Library in memory of a son who went down on the Titanic with a rare edition of Francis Bacon's essays in his pocket. Basbanes might have sketched more of the book collecting scene outside of Britain and North America.

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Moreover, he never really gets to the bottom of bibliomania, even in the effective meditation on prolific book thief Stephen Blumberg that frames his tome. Still, the joy Basbanes takes in his abundance of anecdotes captures the spirit that truly links the collectors whom he treatsthe spirit that prizes and passes on its heritage not just of using books, but also of acquiring them. Must reading for any book collector, and a nice addition to even modest personal libraries.

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