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The library : a catalogue of wonders

Author: Stuart Kells
Publisher: Berkeley, CA : Counterpoint, 2019. ©2017
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : First Counterpoint paperback edition
Summary:
Libraries are much more than mere collections of volumes. The best are magical, fabled places whose fame has become part of the cultural wealth they are designed to preserve. To research this book, Stuart Kells traveled around the world with his young family like modern-day "library tourists." Kells discovered that stories about libraries are stories about people, containing every possible human drama. The Library  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Stuart Kells
ISBN: 1640092269 9781640092266
OCLC Number: 1050336643
Description: xvi, 269 pages ; 21 cm
Contents: Preface --
Infinity --
A library with no books: oral traditions and the songlines --
The pleasure of books --
The last days of Alexandria: ancient books and their storage --
Books in bed --
In pursuit of perfection: the rise of the codex --
Fools in love --
"A damned sewerful of men": Renaissance rediscoveries --
Mean-spirited collectors --
Free for all: the abundance of boos in the printing era --
Curiosities --
"What the barbarians did not do": the Vatican library --
Delicacies --
Secret histories: tricks and treasures in the library design --
Found --
Keepers of books: the best and worst librarians in history --
Vandals --
The quintessence of debauchery: Heber, Byron, and Barry --
Writers' libraries --
Execration upon Vulcan: libraries destroyed by fire and war --
Library fauna --
The count: book looters and thieves --
Book wheels and machines --
"The interior of a library should whisper": the Pierpont Morgan Library --
When disaster strikes --
For the glory: the Folger Shakespeare Library --
Birth --
Killing a monk: fantasy libraries --
Death --
A love letter: libraries for the future --
Afterlife.
Responsibility: Stuart Kells.

Abstract:

Libraries are much more than mere collections of volumes. The best are magical, fabled places whose fame has become part of the cultural wealth they are designed to preserve. To research this book, Stuart Kells traveled around the world with his young family like modern-day "library tourists." Kells discovered that stories about libraries are stories about people, containing every possible human drama. The Library is a celebration of books as objects, a celebration of the anthropology and physicality of books and bookish space, and an account of the human side of these hallowed spaces by a leading and passionate bibliophile.

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