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The love of books
Sometimes the love of books is an admirable thing. Other times it can wreak havoc, as in the case of Thomas Frognall Dibdin, whose Bibliomania (the obsessive illness rather than the book of that name) left his family destitute – at least, it would have done if Earl Spencer hadn’t insured the wretched Dibdin’s life for a large sum, which he handed to the family. In the case of some of those Dibdin writes about, there is little doubt that they were in the grip of book-madness. In the fairly near future we intend to publish the same author's Bibliophobia, a darker work written at a time when the book world was changing fast.
In the case of William Blades, bibliophilia was more benign. His Enemies of Books is a delight to read. Likewise, Richard de Bury’s Philobiblon shows the better side of book collecting.