Ex Libris and Bookplates
Collecting ex libris and bookplates
The collection of ex-libris (or bookplates) is becoming increasingly popular with an estimated 10,000 collectors world wide! There are almost 50 international associations of bookplate collectors as well as a vast number of magazines and books published on the subject.
Whilst many collectors have chosen bookplates as a means of studying the historical, artistic and even cultural changes of the last 500 years, there are also many collectors whose primary motivation is purely artistic - the collection of bookplates gives art lovers the chance to build their own collection of miniature, personalized art-prints.
Some people collect the work of a particular artist such as Rockwell Kent who produced specially commissioned, numbered and signed editions of bookplates which were never actually pasted into books.
This lens is an introduction to this fascinating subject.
A wonderful ex libris and bookplate slideshow
Example of a family crest or heraldic coat of arms - In a copy of Chambaud Louis - Dictionnaire - 1815
The same bookplate is pasted into each of the four volumes. It has an heraldic crest, family shield, or coat of arms, with the motto tenax in fide, which is, "Steadfast in [the] faith" and is the motto of the Smith family. The name 'Abel Smith' appears under the crest, and this may be Abel Smith of Woodhall Park, born 17th July 1788 and died 23rd February 1859; a theory strengthened by the words 'Woodhall Park' appearing on the bookplate.
Source: From Old Books
The creation of a bookplate
The development of a bookplate from blank paper, through sketches, the engraving of the wooden block and the final printed image.
Further reading about bookplates
An ex-libris exhibition
This book belongs to...Jack London
Jack London (January 12, 1876 - November 22, 1916) was an American author, journalist, and social activist. Best remembered today as the author of White Fang and Call of the Wild, set in the Klondike Gold Rush, it seems highly appropriate that his ex libris should feature a wolf's head.
Image Â© Bookplate of Jack London by Pratt Libraries, on Flickr
Ex-libris and bookplate links
- Ex Libris Art
Dedicated to the collection of ex libris prints, bookplate art and other rare personalized book labels, as well as listings of ex libris bookplates for sale.
- Bookplate guide
Everything you could possibly need to know...
- Ex Libris//Bookplates
Ex Libris//Bookplates Reflections on books, bibliomania, bookplates and the art of engraving.
- The New Australian Bookplate Society
The New Australian Bookplate Society
- Confessions of a Bookplate Junkie
Confessions of a Bookplate Junkie - Random thoughts from a passionate bookplate collector.
- Ex Libris (State Library of Queensland)
Ex Libris: bookplates from our collections