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Re: Some Moseley Personalities Volume 1
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This is a 36-page booklet, of which 5-1/2 pages are devoted to Tolkien. The biographical text by Roy Thomas adds a little local history to what can be had from other sources, mainly Carpenter, and has some inaccuracies. It is accompanied by 5 small modern black and white photos of Tolkien's grandparents' homes in Church and Ashfield roads; the Tolkien home at Gracewell; and the Tolkiens' homes in Alcester and Westfield roads.

We found our copy a few years ago on Abebooks. The two currently on that site are relatively expensive, one ridiculously so at $219!

Wayne & Christina

Posted on: 2010/9/12 4:46


Re: Some Moseley Personalities Volume 1
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We have it, and refer to it in the Companion and Guide, at the end of the article on Birmingham (p. 117). The chapter on Tolkien (pp. 28-33) is notable for having five photos of Tolkien's and Tolkien's grandparents' homes.

Wayne & Christina

Posted on: 2010/9/8 4:57


Re: Essais de Philologie Moderne (1951)
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Putting on my special collections librarian's hat:

The correct term for a book with the folds of its gatherings still intact is, as Gawain says, unopened. As John Carter writes in ABC for Book Collectors (available as a pdf here), unopened 'must not be confused, as it often is by philistines, with uncut'. My and Christina's copy of the Essais is roughly trimmed but not unopened; it was, however, once owned and read by someone else, who made a few marginal notes, and he or she may have opened the leaves. It's not at all unusual to find scholarly books of this sort, issued in wrappers and intended to be rebound (and thus trimmed at that time), with unopened gatherings.

Now, then, as to opening unopened leaves, my advice is always to stay well clear of any metal or plastic tool, the use of which, even with care, may bring disastrous results, mainly because it will be so much harder than book paper and have a hard edge. Much better to use a stiff card, for instance an index card (at the library I use old catalog card stock), heavier than the paper to be cut but not too thick, and keeping it and the book flat, address the unopened top or fore-edge with a gentle sawing motion, with just enough force to get the job done.

Wayne

Posted on: 2010/9/6 19:25


Re: A nice blog on collecting Tolkien books
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Christina and I still keep an eye on eBay and very occasionally pick up an item (I just bought an out-of-print classical CD), but the climate of the site has changed, with proportionately many more professional sellers and straightforward commercial goods, which translates into fewer bargains and unusual lots, less fun for the buyer.

As for overpricing - my apologies to those who have heard me tell this story before - there was once a book dealer who had a large number of Tolkien items and priced most of them very high (relative to the time, some thirty years ago, though some of the prices would be high even today). Somehow we came to talk on the phone, and I let him know that all of the Tolkien collectors I knew, as well as my impecunious self, couldn't possibly afford most of what he was offering (I did buy a few things more reasonably priced). He replied that he was deliberately pushing the envelope on Tolkien prices, having bought high at auction and now priced high in his catalogue on the basis of the auction values, so as to make as much as he could - it was going to fund his childrens' education, he said - and he could wait until he got what he was asking. Well, although a handful of very well-heeled dealers have been able to do so, this one couldn't, or wouldn't, wait too long. Within a year or so, I believe, I saw the remaining stock offered at Sotheby's New York, and it sold at a relative loss.

Wayne

Posted on: 2010/9/3 16:56


Re: Farmer Giles of Ham - 50th/60th Anniversary
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The 60th anniversary edition is the 50th, rebranded for the occasion. (When we first saw it, we wondered where the ten years had gone since we worked on Farmer Giles.) No new material was added, and no corrections were made, though we've listed some on our web site.

Sorry, somehow we missed the thread about this in 2009, or would have commented at the time.

Wayne & Christina

Posted on: 2010/8/26 6:04



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