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ConserveThis! Archive humor

Never back a book when you’re upset…

Wow, whoever originally backed this 19th century publisher’s binding should’ve really taken a moment to calm down and take a deep breath first before continuing. They really beat the heck out of it with the hammer! Backing is  “the process of shaping a ridge or shoulder on each side of the spine of a text […]

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“Victorian Blood Book” from the Library of Evelyn Waugh

“Victorian Blood Book” from the Library of Evelyn Waugh Evelyn Waugh, whose manuscripts and 3,500-volume library are now at the Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas at Austin, was an inveterate collector of things Victorian (and well ahead of most of his contemporaries in this regard). Undoubtedly the single most curious object in the entire […]

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I’m currently working on repairing this Victorian book of floral symbolism, and realized that a couple of the plates were loose and not in the right place. Unfortunately there was no paginated “List of Illustrations”, and the titles on the plates didn’t match up with the flowers listed in the table of contents. So what […]

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“From grave to gay; being essays and studies concerned with certain subjects of serious interest, with the Puritans, with literature, and with the humours of life” by J. St. Loe Strachey

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Madame Necker (Suzanne Curchod) bravely stands against a disfiguring tide line. Image from Madame Tussaud’s memoirs and reminiscences of France, by Marie Tussaud, ed. by F. Hervé, London, 1838.

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The works of Francis Bacon. Edge marbling, hand-tied endbands (only half of which remain), a nifty facsimile of a handwritten letter, and some interesting text layouts.