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 "De boekhandel pakt uit":
prospectuses, personalia, prints en portraits
from the Library of the Royal Book Trade Society (KVB)

*  Exhibition room
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From 7 September until 9 November 2001 Drawing, made by Johan Braakensiek to be used as a poster for the 'Tentoonstelling voor het boekenvak in het Paleis voor Volksvlijt te Amsterdam' organised in 1881 by the Vereeniging ter bevordering van de belangen des Boekhandels (the Dutch book trade society

This fall the university library dedicates an exhibition to historical material concerning Dutch book trade and publishing. The excuisite matters on display are from the Library of the Royal Book Trade Society (KVB), on which the university library has a loan since 1958. On display are mainly 19th century objects such as placards, auction catalogues, portraits of Dutch publishers and book traders, posters, manuscripts, engravings, copperplates, prospectuses, books, photo albums and drawings. Book historians, but also children's books afficionados will have much to enjoy.

The exhibition coincides with the release of two CD-rom's containing databases, that list a large part of the KVB-collection. They list Personalia & Prospectuses and Prints & Portraits. Objects from the databases are on display in the exhibition room and other parts of the library. The exhibition gives a good impression of the process of book publishing, and shows the versatile nature of the collection.

cd-rom Personalia and Prospectuses cover Personalia & Prospectuses
The Personalia & Prospectuses database contains large files on Dutch companies and persons that are or were active in publishing. It is therefore an unique source of documentation. Letters, bills, bank withdrawals, cash books and other handwritten sources as well as printed matter such as circulars, are individually described. Prospectuses and other material concerning companies and persons are described collectively per firm. This particular database also contains the initial stage of a new historical inventory, a retrospective survey of the people and companies actively involved in the Dutch book trade during the 19th and 20th century.

cd-rom Prints and Portraits cover Prints & Portraits
This database lists a considerable collection of individual prints and portraits that are able to illustrate research and education in book history through the years. Listed are: portraits, historical prints, topographical prints, pictures showing the world of books and print trade, one-cent prints, cartoons, drawings, photographs, technical samples, book illustrations etcetera.

The cd-rom's can be ordered now at the counter of the reading room / De la Fontaine Verwey room in the university library. They cost Dfl. 49,50 each (Dfl. 75,- for both) and can also be ordered at the desk of the exhibition room. The objects listed in the cd-rom's can be consulted in the libraries' reading room. A grant from the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Welfare enabled the UB/KVB to log these collections during the last few years. Within time the databases (with a limited amount of search possibilities) will appear online.

Lunchtime lectures
Two lectures will be given to accompany the exhibition. Place: the university libraries' "Doelenzaal" (accessible via the libraries'main entrance at Singel 425). Time 12.30- 13.30:

  • Wednesday September 26, 2001: Drs. G. Verhoeven, a Haarlem antiquarian bookseller, on prints and portraits. You will have the opportunity to have your own prints assessed.
  • Wednesday October 17, 2001: Drs. A.H. van der Weel, from Leiden University, on the Kirberger and Kesper international bookshop the Amsterdam importer of English literature.

In the exhibition room you will find a hand-out catalogue describing the objects on display. The exhibition has been styled by Lies Ros. A.M. Ledeboer published his alphabetical list of Northern Dutch bookprinters, booksellers and publishers in 1876 A. Binger's patent for his


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Last modified: 24 September 2001
Editor: Monique Kooijmans
(thanks to those who compiled the exhibition: Astrid Balsem en Nico Kool)
Further information: Mieke Beumer, exhibition coöordinator