Monuments inédits … faisant partie du cabinet de Guillaume Libri.
Guglielmo Libri (1803–1869) represents an extreme form of bibliomania. A political refugee from Italy, Libri established himself in France as a book collector. His impressive 40,000-volume library won him the post of French Inspector of Libraries in 1841, but within a few years he was suspected of stealing books from the libraries he visited. Libri escaped with his collection to London, where he auctioned his books in two immense sales in 1861. One of the more splendid entries in the bibliography of “l’affaire Libri” is this suite of sixty colorful chromolithographic plates of bindings from Libri’s collection. It is Sir Thomas Phillipps’s copy, with his notes on the bindings acquired for the Bibliotheca Phillippica.
Purchased in 2003.