It is interesting that Rex Nan Kivell (1898–1977), an art dealer who was so passionately interested in portraiture and in the representation of those that shaped our part of the world, only commissioned two artists to capture him in portrait form. He included these works in his compendium Portraits of the Famous and Infamous along with references to, and images of, his friends and those who had assisted him to produce his very time-consuming volume over nearly two decades.
I was lucky enough to win a Kenneth Binns Travelling Fellowship in 2012 to attend the London Rare Book Summer School. During the five day course on historical European bindings, I learned about endbands. An endband sits at the head (top) and tail (bottom) of the spine of a book.
During a visit to the rare book stack I took the opportunity to see what different types of endbands I could find.
Asian thread binding was invented in China many hundreds of years ago, well before the codex was invented in Europe. It was quickly adopted throughout South East Asia as it is a relatively easy binding to produce and does not require years of learning. The technique of asian thread binding has not changed over a millenia.
There are two main thread binding styles; in Japan these are called fukuro-toji, yamato-toji, each with their own peculiarities, and a little known one called retchoso (sometimes spelt recchoso), found only in Japan.
A question came through the Ask a Librarian service—"I found The Glossographia in your catalogue. I would like to see the original 1656 version. Can I see it online?"
Glossographia? This is not a word you can look up in a dictionary; rather it is the title of a lexicon or dictionary of unusual words put together by one Thomas Blount, published in 1656.
Glossographia; or, a dictionary interpreting the hard words of whatsoever language, now used in our refined English tongue – Thomas Blount 1656
This year is International Map Year.
In my role as a reader’s assistant at the Library, I am privileged to work closely with both our collections and our readers, and to see the myriad ways in which our collections are used and interpreted by others.
Previously, Richard traced the Gore family through three Johns, beginning with Captain John Gore who served as third in command on the H.M.S. Endeavour—Royal Navy Gores in Australia—part one. Here, he continues his journey.