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A Library Miscellany by Claire Cock-Starkey
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A Library Miscellany (edition 2018)

by Claire Cock-Starkey (Author)

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404546,079 (3.56)None
What can be found in the Vatican's Secret Archive? How many books did Charles Darwin's library aboard the Beagle hold? Which library is home to a colony of bats?Bursting with potted histories, quirky facts and enlightening lists, this book explores every aspect of the library, celebrating not only these remarkable institutions but also the individuals behind their awe-inspiring collections.From the ancient library at Alexandria to the Library of Congress in Washington DC, A Library Miscellany explores institutions both old and new, from the university library to that of the humble village. It opens the door to unusual collections such as herbaria, art libraries, magic libraries and even the library of smells, and charts the difficulties of cataloguing books deemed to be subversive, heretical, libellous or obscene.Packed with unusual facts and statistics, this is the perfect volume for library enthusiasts, bibliophiles and readers everywhere.… (more)
Member:AnnShirley
Title:A Library Miscellany
Authors:Claire Cock-Starkey (Author)
Info:Bodleian Library, University of Oxford (2018), Edition: 1, 144 pages
Collections:Your library
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A Library Miscellany by Claire Cock-Starkey

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A small, slim tome that is exactly what it says it is: a miscellany of facts about libraries throughout history. Some of it is nothing new to anyone who enjoys a good book about a book, but most of it was new and fairly interesting. It had a few drive-my-husband-crazy moments of "listen to this!" but not so many that there was heavy sighing or eye-rolling going on.

My personal favourites included the most overdue books and the example of rules at different major libraries in the world (I love that the Vatican Library has a bar). I'm dying to know why Portugal's legal deposit laws require 11 copies of every book be submitted (as opposed to the more common 1-2 copies).

I'd have liked to have seen some illustrations of a few of the topics mentioned, but overall it's a nice little book, and one I'll likely refer to more than once when I feel the need to torture friends with book related trivia. ( )
  murderbydeath | Jan 24, 2022 |
I have been a fan of libraries for longer than I care to remember. I visit my local one in most weekends and normally have a book or two to collect or drop back and always look at the shelves to see if there is anything that catches my eye.

This sister volume to The Book Lovers' Miscellany picks up the same baton as that book. It is one that will have you retiring to the closest comfortable chair to uncover the delights and secrets of the libraries of the world. In here we will learn who was the first librarian, which library in the UK loans the most books each year and just what a legal deposit library is. There is a potted history of the library from the earliest over 2500 years ago to the most recent digital libraries. There are the rules of some of the world's most famous libraries where you can discover which one states that you cannot carry a gun in (!!!)

It is shocking I know, but there are libraries out there that don't contain books, however, they do contain a variety of other objects from seeds to smells, art and there is even a library of magic. We learn who wanted the library stock for themselves and were caught stealing the maps and books from some of the most famous libraries in the world, and those who have borrowed the books then forgot to bring them back for quite a while. I'm quite excited by the Future Library that Katie Peterson has created, she is collecting 100 books by 100 different authors and these will not be published until 2114.

There is some overlap between this book and The Book Lovers' Miscellany, but this is still a cornucopia of snippets, facts and figures about libraries that bibliophiles will treasure. ( )
  PDCRead | Apr 6, 2020 |
If you're ever looking for a gift for a book lover then this little gem by Claire Cock-Starkey will definitely fit the bill. If you're really splashing out, make sure to pick up the highly recommended The Book Lovers' Miscellany too.

This pocket-sized book is perfect to read on the go, either reading cover to cover or dipping in and out as the mood takes you. It's full of useful statistics, eye-opening facts and interesting titbits that amazed and entertained me. I was amazed to read about the first mobile library in Cumbria in 1857 as horse-drawn carts provided access to books in remote areas without a library.

The timeline at the end of the book is an invaluable source of information as you see the evolution of libraries. I was astounded to see the reference to e-books in the 1970's, when the world wide web was only a twinkle in Tim Berners-Lee's eye. It must have been a librarian's dream to think that books could be accessed by anyone anywhere in the world at anytime. Of course the downside to e-books is the effect it has on the libraries we have come to know and love. As lending of physical books diminishes, I sincerely hope that libraries are not under threat of closure. Long live the library!

A Library Miscellany is an enlightening and entertaining pocket history of every book lover's favourite place; I loved it and I'm sure you will too.

I chose to read an ARC and this is my honest and unbiased opinion. ( )
  Michelle.Ryles | Mar 9, 2020 |
Entertaining collection of odds and ends of library statistics, history, and miscellaneous facts. For obvious reasons (the book was published by the Bodleian Library of Oxford), some of the facts are Anglo-centric, that still interesting to the reader outside that nationality. ( )
  dono421846 | May 16, 2019 |
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What can be found in the Vatican's Secret Archive? How many books did Charles Darwin's library aboard the Beagle hold? Which library is home to a colony of bats?Bursting with potted histories, quirky facts and enlightening lists, this book explores every aspect of the library, celebrating not only these remarkable institutions but also the individuals behind their awe-inspiring collections.From the ancient library at Alexandria to the Library of Congress in Washington DC, A Library Miscellany explores institutions both old and new, from the university library to that of the humble village. It opens the door to unusual collections such as herbaria, art libraries, magic libraries and even the library of smells, and charts the difficulties of cataloguing books deemed to be subversive, heretical, libellous or obscene.Packed with unusual facts and statistics, this is the perfect volume for library enthusiasts, bibliophiles and readers everywhere.

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