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Grolier Club Exhibitions

Book Collecting

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Naudé, Gabriel.

Advis pour dresser une bibliothèque. — Paris: F. Targa, 1627.

Gabriel  Naudé (1600–1653), French physician and bibliographer, was employed as a librarian by some of the great ecclesiastical book collectors of his time, including Cardinals Bagui, Berberini, and Richelieu, and, for ten fruitful years, Cardinal Mazarin. The aim of Naudé’s Advis was to provide guidelines that “a man might follow concerning the choice of books, the means of procuring them, and their arrangement in the most useful and attractive manner.” 

Purchased from the Harper Fund.

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Les femmes sçavantes, ou, Bibliothèques des dames … — Amsterdam: M. C. le Cene, 1718.

Written by an obscure “Monsieur N. C.,” this rare courtesy book offers women moralistic discourses on cultivating the intellect while dispensing useful advice on arranging, maintaining, and conserving a library of choice books.  The twenty-nine chapters range from the edifying (“Vices and faults that a wise woman should avoid”) to the practical (“On the ordering of books in a woman’s library”).

Purchased in 1987.