Sunday, July 28, 2013

Old Books & Things

Last weekend (as previously mentioned) my brother and I spent some time at The House going through books. Among them were quite a few (four big boxes full!) on local history, which we took to a second-hand bookshop on Monday. It’s the only shop of its kind in town, and with local history as special interest. As far as I know the owner (an old age pensioner himself) has a good reputation. We left the books with him and he phoned me back two days later with his evaluation and I went and collected the money on Thursday. We did not make a fortune but I assume he gave us a fair deal based on his experience. And perhaps more importantly, being sold through the antiquarian bookshop, these books are more likely to end up being bought (and perhaps even read Winking smile!) by people who know how to appreciate them and might even have been looking specifically for them.

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Unfortunately, some books of other kind, in spite of venerable old age, are not considered to be of any monetary value. After thinking about it for a long time now, I ended up taking home one of those, not because of the content of book itself (I’m pretty sure I will never find neither the time nor the energy – nor, to be honest, the proper inspiration! – to read more than snippets from it) but because my great-grandfather used it as “Family Bible” and made notes in it of the birthdays of all of his (11) children. (It’s not a Bible but a collection of sermons by Martin Luther.)

2013-07-23 Samuels Postilla, M Luther's Book of Sermons1

See more photos and read more about this book in my Greetings from the Past post for this week’s Sepia Saturday.

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CIMG5876-001 - Copy  

CIMG5878-001 - Copy

Coincidentally, last weekend Ginny had a post on how to use books as furniture… Having scratched my head about where on earth to keep this giant old book (my bookshelves are really full!), I decided to put it “on display”, but discreetly, in a corner next to my grandmother’s old treasure chest (in which I also keep various family history-related stuff), and underneath an old basked that also belonged to her. That basket I took home 20 years ago (or more). Parts of it were miscoloured so I painted the handle and the trimmings and the bottom inside. But the flowers on the sides are the original decorations and probably there when the basket was bought – whenever that was. 

12 comments:

  1. the perfect place for all three of your treasures. i watched a decorating show last week, and they took old books and wrapped them in colorful paper and used them like you did this, to put things on. i like it just like it is

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    1. The bottom of the spine was torn but I managed to fix that with a few drops of glue. I also used some gentle (I hope) leather cleaning/polishing stuff on the spine. It looks alright now - and in the corner where I placed it it is not subjected to direct sunlight.

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  2. What an absolutely beautiful box. A very good way to keep the book as an treasure rather than a book too.

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    1. That box belonged to my grandmother and it was the first thing I took home from the House. (It contained some notebooks and other memorabilia from my grandmother.) Three of the corner pieces were off and when I tried to find the right kind of nails to put them back on I understood why it had not been fixed before... There were no nails or tacks short enough to be found anywhere (and I tried every hardware store in town + the internet). But then one day I bought some 'brads' in a scrapbooking shop - to use in card-making - and it struck me that they might fit - and they did. So now all four corners are fastened at least enough not to fall of when I lift the lid!

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  3. That book deserves pride of place and you found the perfect spot for it. Sorry I haven't been commenting lately, I have difficulty sitting.

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    1. Thanks Pauline. I hope you get better soon!

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  4. Thanks for the mention, Monica! That book of sermons may not be worth much to anyone else, but is is worth more then diamonds to your family! I like where you put it, and the old treasure chest is really beautiful. And also your idea of where to take the other books was just perfect!

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    1. Thanks Ginny. Tough decisions to me made sometimes when one has very limited space!

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  5. It's nice to have treasures from the past that are inherited.
    I have my Mum's Bible and she made lots of notes on the covers as well.
    Loved your book display idea.

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    1. All in all I have quite a few inherited items, Virginia. If one does not want one's whole home to be a museum one has to keep a balance, though ;)

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  6. The book, the basket and the treasure chest - now, doesn't that sound like the perfect ingredients for a children's fantasy adenvture story?
    Love the basket, it is so pretty!

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    1. I have two other baskets of the same kind that were also my grandmother's. Those two I painted all over (using egg oil tempera colours that I mixed myself) many years ago and I use them both. I have several painted baskets in different sizes around the flat, I find them very useful for collecting various "stuff" in. Looks much neater than just having things strewn about or piled up :)

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