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Happy Birthday, gusto_gummi!

For your present, here's today's Forgotten English!

bibliothecary
Keeper of a library.
--Elisha Coles's English Dictionary, 1713


Words, Words, Words
On this date in 1834, a public auction that took up more than 200 working days over the course of two years began at Sotheby's in London to sell about a half million books from the estate of English bibliomaniac Richard Heber. His family fortune had enabled him, after stockpiling enormous numbers of English books, to buy up many volumes in French, Greek, Italian, Latin, and even Portguese -- languages he could not read. He devoted most of his waking hours not to reading but to the passionate acquisition of private libraries in London, Oxford, Paris, Antwerp, Brussels, and Ghent. But surprisingly, Heber's will did not mention his collection. As Henry Peacham observed in The Compleat Gentleman (1622), "To desire to have many books, and never use them, is like the child that will have a candle burning by him all the while he is sleeping."

Hey, there are worse fetishes!

-The Gneech

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
exatron
Dec. 1st, 2006 02:37 pm (UTC)
That reminds me, I'm overdue for a visit to the library where I used to work. I'm curious about how their new catalog software is working since it wasn't going all that well when I left. (That's about what I expected from something named SIRSI [Pronounced 'Circe'])
the_gneech
Dec. 1st, 2006 02:44 pm (UTC)
As long as it doesn't turn all the librarians into swine...

-TG
laurie_robey
Dec. 1st, 2006 02:59 pm (UTC)
I only have two things to say about that.

"Books are awfully decorative, don't you think?"

Singing:
"He's a bilbliomaniac, bibliomaniac on the floor!
And he's buying books like he's never bought before!"
gusto_gummi
Dec. 1st, 2006 03:07 pm (UTC)
THE GnEEEECH! Thanks Pal!!!
susandeer
Dec. 1st, 2006 05:45 pm (UTC)
Hippo birdie!!!

Placed here because I wasn't sure you'd see it in my journal. @:)
dhlawrence
Dec. 2nd, 2006 01:26 am (UTC)
That guy had a heck of a collection!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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