Wednesday, February 22, 2012

For the Birds

As an antiques dealer, I run across many things... both interesting and mundane.  The really special things stick with me though, either because I take them home or price them too high:)  Moreover, most of the items I keep tend to be small and dainty for a little cabinet I have or books for reading and/or collecting.  
On this particular note, I come to a new acquisition.  For now, it's in the shop.  I'm hard pressed to find space for it at Abode de Newton (my house).  The lovely Terry (a trusted local "picker"-more on what that is later) found this special "set"... A 1796 edition of Pindar's Works.  Who was Pindar?  Who really cares?**  It's the binding that make these two orphaned books unique!   Gilt, leather, patina... Yes, they have these things.  But the bird stamping is what I fell in love with.  Two birds eating cherries from a bowl.  Simply wonderful!
Such an extraordinary binding make these books a fabulous piece of history.  Sadly, they've been separated from their brothers and sisters making them incomplete sets.  The bane of a booksellers existence- That and silverfish. But I'm just happy these beauties have survived over 200 years.  And the best part is the text is lively and interesting!  And at $22 each, they won't be here for much longer...

**OK- For those that are curious, I googled him and not much came up.  Once again, let's focus on what's important- The birds!