Phaidon 1st 1981
square format 4to, v v min crsing to d/w edges o/w VG++/VG++ 655 gms
(Order reference 11386).
There are true book lovers, such as Erasmus: "When I get a little money, I buy books: and if any
is left, I buy food and clothes". There are those who are not so keen, such as Louis XIV: "I see no point in reading". There are critics who are less than fair to authors, such as Sydney Smith: "I never read a book before reviewing it, it prejudices a man so". There are authors who are less than kind to critics, such as Rabelais: "As for you, little envious prigs, snarling, bastard, puny Criticks, you'll soon have railed your last: Go hang yourselves". Finally, there are those who stand by, incomprehending, such as William Henry, Duke of Gloucester: "Another damned, thick, square book! Always scribble, scribble, scribble! Eh! Mr Gibbon?".
All these quotes and many others are included in Gerald Donaldson's delightful anthology: Books. In this beautifully illustrated volume are hundreds of quotations about books being made, books being sold. books being read, disastrous books, successful books, and the problem and cure of bibliomania. A book for every book lover, dealer, curator or collector, Books is a truly original collection of insights, both lighthearted and earnest: it answers questions that few would have thought of asking, and it shows the literati at their wittiest and wickedest, such as Disraeli, who wrote on receiving an unsolicited manuscript: -Many thanks; I shall lose no time in reading it"; or Groucho Marx, who wrote with his usual kindness: -From the moment I picked up your book until I laid it down I was convulsed with laughter. Someday I intend reading it".