Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Old old books

Now, I'm not a serious collector of books (though I have managed to amass a reasonable collection over the years) and I haven't ever made a special effort to buy old books. Nevertheless, I do find that older books have a certain appeal, not to mention they smell great! (Is that weird...?)

So I have acquired quite a few old books that I thought it would be interesting to have a look at. If, like me, you enjoy the well-thumbed, yellowing, faded cloth-covered look on your books, then this blog post is for you my friends! Enjoy.


Starting with the most modern of these 'old books', the first on my list is Playing the Piano for Pleasure by Charles Cooke.

This edition is from 1948, and used to belong to my grandfather, who loved to play the piano, both on his own and to accompany his university friends on their various instruments.

My grandpa's name in the front

As I play the piano myself, my grandpa was very keen that I should get the maximum pleasure from playing as possible. He obviously felt that this book would help me achieve this. I adore playing the piano and love music in general, so this book was a welcome addition to my collection. Not to mention it's written wonderfully!

"Fingernails trimmed short enough, please..."


I really have no idea where I picked this next book up... 

This rather battered edition of Three Men in New Suits by J.B. Priestley is from 1946. 

It was published just after the war so had to conform to 'war economy standards'. The story itself is also rather dated with its hopeful view of communism as being the way of the future, but it was also quite charming and redemptive in its own way.


This edition of Deutschland - ein Wintermärchen by Heinrich Heine is from 1945...

...and this edition of Toute La Lyre by Victor Hugo is from 1935.

Both of these books I got for free from the languages department at university.


The next book was a lucky find from an antique shop in Wales.

It's The Ebb-Tide by Robert Louis Stevenson. This 1924 copy has a beautiful signature imprint on the front.


The final book on here doesn't actually have a date in it, so I have no idea how old it is, but it's got all the pleasing qualities of the other books, so I thought I'd give it a special mention.

It's The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas, complete with illustrations.


So there you have it! Some beautiful old books from my shelves. 

Do you have any old books that you think deserve appreciation? What's the oldest book you own? Let me know in the comments.

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