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much that ever he had any leisure to read ; and when I perceive how many things he read, I marvel more than ever he had any leisure to write. The creation of opportunity is no lesser gift. 'A wise man,' says Bacon, 'will make more opportunities than he finds. Tomaso de Andrada, a Portuguese Jesuit, wrote his magnum opus in a dungeon, in chains, without clothes, with little food, writing only in the middle of the day by the help of a faint light which he received through an air-hole.
The compilation of bibliographies began early in the history of books, and doubtless grew out of the catalogues which the early printers put forth. Conrad von Gesner compiled a “Bibliotheca Universalis' which was printed at Zurich in four volumes between 1545 and 1555. François Grudé published a 'Bibliothèque Françoise' in 1584. It is a catalogue of French authors and is not confined to any particular subject, but at least it is a step in the direction of classification. From that date the number of these invaluable works has steadily increased, and about the middle of the seventeenth century L'Abbé put forth the first (?) of those useful book-collector's aids, a
Bibliotheca Bibliothecarum. This interesting little volume is really a list of books (under their authors' names) which also contain lists of authors. As L'Abbé says in the preface to his volume, so pleasantly dedicated Lectoribus Philobiblis,' he
designs his book to be a ‘Bibliothecam Bibliothecarum, Catalogum Catalogorum, Nomenclatorem Nomenclatorum, Indicem Indicum, et quid non ?' The only edition which we have seen was printed at Paris in 1664, but the licence is dated 1651. The second edition was printed at Rouen in 1672. A third edition was issued at Leipzig in 1682, and a fourth some years later, all in duodecimo or small octavo.
Grudé's book is a choice one. It is entitled · Le Premier Volume de La Bibliothèque du Sieur de la Croix-du-Maine : Qui est un catalogue général de toutes sortes d'Autheurs, qui ont escrit en François depuis cinq cents ans et plus jusques à ce jourd'huy,' and was published at Paris 'Chez Abel L'Angelier'in 1584. It is one of those folio volumes printed in large pica on thick paper that delight the heart of the bibliophile and are a joy to handle. At the back of the title - page is an oval portrait of Henry of Navarre, dated 1581. He was not a handsome man, if one may judge by this portrait, in fact it would be difficult to draw a more repellent face ; yet the book was dedicated to the king in a long *Epistre au Roy' which ends with the author's quaint anagram 'Race du mans, si fidel a son Roy' (François de la Croix du Maine). But perhaps the portrait was omitted in the royal copy. The work was to have been completed in three volumes, of which the first two were to
contain works published in the vernacular, and the third those printed in Latin. But alas ! the author left only this first volume, which contains some three thousand authors, with short biographies of them. One hesitates to connect this premature end of the book (or, indeed, the author's assassination six years later) with the unlucky portrait! Altogether a very delightful volume.
Nowadays a bibliography that is not at once complete, detailed, and meticulously accurate is of no value. In this critical age when the methods of modern science are applied to books, it behoves the bibliographer to be careful, thorough, and precise. Unless he can bring these three attributes to bear upon his work, far better that he should never undertake it; for the result will be not only valueless but misleading, and he will certainly fail to obtain that lasting fame and perpetuity of praise which God and good men have consented shall be the reward of those whose published labours advance the good of mankind.'
There is one small appendage of the private library which must be mentioned before we close the chapter. A list of the prices which he has paid for his books forms a record that is indispensable to the book-collector. It is impossible to carry all one's 'bargains' in one's head, and if pencilled inside the book itself it is exposed to that publicity which one naturally shuns. Such a record is of something more than curious interest, for a knowledge of the rise or fall in the price of those books in which he is interested is essential to the collector. Whenever he comes across, in a bookseller's catalogue, a book that he already possesses, he will like to know how the present price compares with that which he gave for his copy.
A convenient shape for this useful book is an ordinary folio account book (ours measures 15 inches x9] inches), and it should be ruled for 'cash,' with an inner margin. Between the inner margin and (outer) cash column we rule two lines, dividing the middle of the page into three columns, of which the left-hand one is the widest. The following illustration will show you precisely what is meant. At the top of each page is placed a letter of the alphabet, and, immediately beneath or alongside this, the date of a year. In the inner margin each line is numbered down the page. In the next column is written the author and short title of the book-sufficient to identify it-then the place where it was bought, then the date when purchased, and in the cash column the price which we paid for it.