Journal of the week — Vojvodjanski zbornik


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

PG1400.15-V64-knj.1-buildingimage PG1400.15-V64-knij.1-wagon

Vojvodjanski zbornik: almanah. vols. 1 (1938) and 2 (1939)
Novi Sad: S.n., 1938-1939
xPG1400 I5 V64

This journal of art and culture was produced in Vojvojdina, an autonomous province of Serbia, on the eve of the second World War. The journal, published in these two issues only, assembled the work of modernist artists and writers of the region, including many contributors whose work is otherwise unpublished or unrecorded. Many of the artists and writers did not survive the war.

The journals include prose, poetry and, in the first volume, illustrations – including original graphic works (woodcuts and linocuts) by Bogdan Teodorovic, Stefan Bodnarov, Milan Konjovic (1898-1993), Milenko Servan, Bogdan Suput (1914-1942), Ivan Tabakovic (1898-1977), Nava Sudarska, Petar Dobrovic (1890-1942) and others.

The journal was edited by Bogdan Ciplic and writer and critic Sima Cucic (1905-1988). Today in Serbia, annual awards for achievements in the field of children’s literature are given in the name of Sima Cucic.

Milan Konjovic (1898-1993) became a prominent Serbian painter. He went to school in Prague, lived in Paris between 1924 and 1932 and traveled throughout Europe before returning to Vojvodjansk. He survived a German prisoner-of-war camp.

Bogdan Suput, considered one of the great Serbian painters of the first half of the twentieth century, was born in 1914. He also spent time in Paris. In 1939 he returned to Belgrade where he became a member of the art group, “Ten.” That April, the Germans invaded Yugoslavia. Suput survived German captivity, but was shot by Hungarian fascists in Novi Sad in 1942. An art school in Novi Sad, begun sixty years ago, is named after him.

Ivan Tabakovic was born in Arad, Hungary (now Romania). He studied art in Budapest and Zagreb. He traveled briefly in Munich. In 1930 he moved to Novi Sad and began teaching in Belgrade in 1938.

Petar Dobrovic, a proponent, along with Milan Konjovic, of Serbian colorism, was known for his portraits and landscapes. He experimented with impressionism and cubism. He was President of the short-lived, small Serbo-Hungarian Baranya-Baja Republic in 1921. He died in Belgrade during the German occupation.

Looking Forward to Book Arts Program Workshop, “Up-cycled Stories: Books as Process”


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Rare Books is proud to support the Book Arts Program with its collections. For more information about the Book Arts Program and future workshops, visit their website or like them on Facebook.

Up-cycled Stories: Books as Process
Julianna Christie, Marnie Powers-Torrey & Emily Tipps

May 28 
Saturday, 10:00–6:00
Book Arts Studio, J. Willard Marriott Library, Level 4
Free spots are limited; please apply here. The application deadline is April 14.
Additional spots: $110, register here.
Registration is closed!

Bring a personally challenging story to retell in a new light or a daily routine to reconsider and reframe. With a focus on finding joy and beauty in the everyday, participants stamp out insecurities, recontextualize shortcomings, and re-imagine the self in book form. In this workshop, employ ink, brushes, stamps, mark-making tools, text, and re-collected common objects to produce process pages. Through a reimagining of the past, reinvent present perspective with an open heart, mind, and eyes toward gratitude and compassion. Instructors demonstrate a binding to be completed post-workshop from produced sheets. Come with a willingness to play with color, shape, narrative, and texture.
– – – – –

Julianna Christie graduated from Wellesley College and holds a BA in English Literature and Studio Art, with an emphasis in bookmaking. Upon graduating, she worked at the Center for Book Arts and Granary Books in New York City. She has been making books for over 20 years, with books held in Special Collections libraries at Wellesley College and Harvard. She incorporates collage, photography, sewing and love into her books. Julianna is also a life coach, specializing in personal growth and transformation. In her coaching, she invites clients to explore the art of storytelling, using words and imagery to examine and ultimately re-conceive a happy life.

Marnie Powers-Torrey holds an MFA in photography from the University of Utah and a BA in English and Philosophy from Boston College’s Honors Program. She is the Managing Director of the Book Arts Program and Red Butte Press, an Associate Librarian (Lecturer), and academic advisor for minor and certificate students in Book Arts. Marnie teaches letterpress printing, artists’ books, and other courses for the Book Arts Program and elsewhere. She is master printer for the Red Butte Press, harnessing the mighty printing power of a full staff of excellent printers. A founding member of the College Book Arts Association, she served as Awards Chair for three years and currently serves on the board of directors. Her work is exhibited and held in collections nationally.


Marnie Powers-Torrey
Salt Lake City, UT: M. Powers-Torrey, 2000
N7433.4 P69 E8 2000

Edition of ten copies. University of Utah copy is no. 4, signed by the author.

Emily Tipps is the Binding Instructor, Program Manager, and an Assistant Librarian (Lecturer) at the Book Arts Program at the University of Utah, as well as the proprietor of High5 Press, which publishes innovative writing in the form of handmade artists’ books. She holds a BA in English from Wesleyan University, an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Colorado, and an MFA in Book Arts from the University of Alabama. Emily’s work is exhibited and held in collections nationally.


Emily Tipps
Tuscaloosa, AL: High5 Press, 2007
N7433.4 T574 O73 2007

Letterpress printed from photopolymer plates on a Vandercook SP-15. Paper is Arches Text Wove and Stonehenge. Text type is Big Caslon. Pochoir illustrations. Endsheets are gray Bugra paper. Handsewn binding in black Stone Henge paper covers. Front cover blind-embossed. Edition of sixty copies. University of Utah copy is no. 42.



We recommend — Weller Book Works Presents FEATHERS, PAWS, FINS and CLAWS


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“It was all as grand as grand could be.”


Feathers, Paws, Fins and Claws
Presentation and Reception
Christine A. Jones and Jennifer Schacker
Weller Book Works
Trolley Square
Thursday, May 26, 6:30PM

This event is free and open to the public

A wide variety of creatures walk, fly, leap, slither, and swim through fairy tale history. Marvelous animals are deeply inscribed in current popular culture — the beast redeemed by beauty, the frog prince released from enchantment by a young princess, wolves in pursuit of little girls and little pigs. Feathers, Paws, Fins, and Claws: Fairy-Tale Beasts presents lesser-known tales featuring animals, wild and gentle, who appear in imaginative landscapes and exhibit a host of surprising talents. The offbeat, haunting stories in this collection, illustrated by Lina Kusaite, are rich and relevant, and provoke the imaginations of readers of all ages.

Editors Christine Jones, University of Utah Associate Professor, and Jennifer Schacker, University of Guelph Associate Professor, chose ten stories that represent several centuries and cultural perspectives on fairy tale animals — rats as seductive as Little Red Riding Hood’s wolf, snakes who find human mates, dancing sheep and well-mannered bears. These beasts move between animal behavior and acts that seem more human than beastly. Each tale is presented as closely as possible to their original print versions, reflecting the use of historical spelling and punctuation.

Join Weller Book Works for a presentation by Jones and Schacker, and an interview by University of Utah Associate Professor Anne Jamison.

Read the tales, feast on treats from Fillings & Emulsions and Passion Flour, and have your very own copy of Feathers, Paws, Fins and Claws signed by the editors.


Rare Books celebrates this publication with its own collection of fairy tales, including:


Le XIII piaceuoli notti del S. Gio. Francesco Straparola di Carauaggion diuise in due libri…
Giovanni Francesco Straparola (ca. 1480- ca. 1557)
In Venetia: 1580
PQ4634 S7 P5 1580

The Pleasant Nights, a collection of seventy-five stories, was first published in 1550 with twenty-five stories. Giovanni Straparola added stories to the next two editions, including what are considered to be the first “fairy tales” printed in a European vernacular. The collection of stories was reprinted in at least twenty-three editions between 1550 and 1620 and translated into German, Spanish, and French within only a few years after the first printing. The book was placed on the Index of Prohibited Books in 1624, for its descriptions and seeming justification of magic.

Several of these tales, such as “Beauty and the Beast” and “Puss-in-Boots,” were retold and made famous by Charles Perrault and the Grimm Brothers.


East of the Sun and West of the Moon: Old Tales from the North
Peter Christen Asbjørnsen (1812-1885)
London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1924
PT8802 N813 1924

First published in 1914 as a luxury gift book, East of the Sun and West of the Moon is a collection of fifteen fairy tales gathered by Norwegian folklorists Peter Christen Asbjørnsen and Jørgen Engebretsen Moe in the mid-nineteenth century. The two spent years traveling across Norway transcribing local lore made up of trolls, ogres, and witches from the ancient pagan mythology of Scandinavia.

London publisher Holder and Stoughton chose Danish artist Kay Nielsen (1886-1957) to illustrate their publication of the tales. The book has since become one of the most well-known and well-beloved of children’s books.


Book of the week — Traitte Des Diuertissemens, Inclinations, & Perfections Royales


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



Potier de Morais (fl. 1644-1670)
Paris: Pierre Moreau, 1644
Only edition
DC133.32 P64 1644

Set in the exotic Orient, this novel on the education of a prince was written for and dedicated to six-year-old Louis XIV. Potier de Morais added pedagogy on the art of being king amid attempted kidnappings, fierce combat, reversals of fortune, damsels in distress, faithful friendships, love, and, naturally, tennis. Skills such as how to conduct an army in the field are presented as the same skills needed by an absolute ruler to sponsor a grand fete.

One character is an amiable poacher, Dom Castagne, who describes his idyllic life in woods belonging to someone else, hunting hare, stag and fowl. Morais developed Dom Castagne into the lead character of an unpublished comedy.

This book was printed in Pierre Moreau’s ‘script types,’ copied from the Italian cursive calligraphy considered most polite of the time. There was a strong interest in the seventeenth century, especially among French aristocracy, in script over type. Moreau, a writing master, wrote several books on the art of handwriting. As a printer, he was the first to develop calligraphic hands into type.

By securing his privilege directly from Louis XIII in 1642 to use his “nouveau caractheres,” Moreau (ca. 1600-ca. 1649) became Imprimeur ordinaire du Roy without joining the powerful printers’ guild. This did not please the master printers of Paris. Moreau was harassed by printers, booksellers, and writing-masters alike. In 1648, the Communaute des Libraires, Imprimeurs et Relieurs secured an injunction forbidding him to print. Moreau consequently abandoned typography and died soon after.

No other copy of the present work is in the United States. University of Utah copy bound in 19th-century glazed purple boards with gilt spine title and date, red edges.

Book of the Week — Fasciculus Temporum


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“This is the art of arts, the science of sciences. The valuable treasures of wisdom and knowledge, desired by all men, come out of the deep shadow of hiding, enriching and illuminating a world in the hands of evil. The unlimited power of books…now spreads through [printing] to every tribe, people, nation and language to all parts of the world.”


Werner Rolewinck (1425-1502)
Strassburg: Johan Pruss, not before 1490

Werner Rolewinck’s Fasciculus temporum was one of the most popular chronicles of the incunable period and beyond. This title has the distinction of being one of only a few books printed in this period while the author still lived. At least thirty editions were printed between the editio princeps (1474) and the death of Rolewinck. Five of these editions were printed Johan Pruss, four in Latin, as is the present edition, and one in German. This edition is expanded from the first to include events which occurred since the first edition, such as the death of Mathias Corvinus, King of Hungary in 1490.

Rolewinck, born in Westphalia, was the son of a well-to-do farmer. In 1447 he entered the Carthusian cloister of St. Barbara in Cologne. He wrote at least thirty works, mainly on theology, and mostly for the edification of his fellow monks. Many of these manuscripts were never put into print.

The printing of this text was tricky. The page layout has a double-ruled strip in the middle of the page, separating the text above (Biblical history with commentary by the Church Fathers) from the text below (secular history). Within the strip are one, two or three circles containing the names of people, beginning with Adam. Dates above are calculated from the creation of the world (5199 B.C.) Dates below, printed upside down, indicate the number of years before the birth of Christ.


Illustrated with nine woodcuts, including a frontispiece on the verso of the half-title of an elderly pilgrim, in classic “going on three feet” pose; twelve town views; an Ark and rainbow; and a full-length portrait of Jesus Christ. A city in flames illustrates the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Troy, and others. Three woodcuts illustrate omens, such as comets, eclipses and monstrous births. The page with the woodcut of Jesus Christ (fol. 37) is an example of sophisticated typesetting: the figure of Christ is surrounded on four corners by the names of the Evangelists with quotations from the Bible.




University of Utah bound in later, probably seventeenth century German, paste-paper boards. UU copy has contemporary ink annotations on half-title and top margin of frontispiece and several others throughout the text, including a drawing on fol. XLXIII.


Indigenous Peoples — student response


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

These commentaries are excerpts from an assigned project for Humanities4900/6900, “Indigenous Peoples: Social and Cultural Perspectives,” taught by Isabel Dulfano, Spring semester 2016. Students studied demographics, Mayan epigraphy, Incan kipu, archaeology, linguistics and other topics as an interdisciplinary approach to critically expanding their understanding of indigenous peoples, historically and in a contemporary setting.

Dr. Dulfano arranged for two class periods to be devoted to working with pieces ranging from Mesoamerican codex facsimiles to 16th through 19th century books to 20th and 21st century artist’s books from the rare book collections. The students looked at books which reflected the colonized and the colonizer, the perspective of Church and State, and self-referential texts depicting imposed visions of time and place.

From Brisa Zavala:

Nombres geograficos de Mexico…
Antonio Peñafiel (1831-1922)
Mexico: Oficina tip. De la Secretaria de foment, 1885
First edition
F1219 P39 1885

As part of a two-day class activity we visited the Marriott Library’s rare book collections and had the opportunity to interact with facsimiles and original copies of books pertaining to indigenous peoples of Latin America.

On the first day we interacted with pieces dating from the 8th century Common Era to 1899. One of the books that caught my eye was Nombres Geograficos de Mexico, 1885. This book contains names of various geographical places in Mexico, some of which still remain as the names of towns in present-day Mexico. The author, Antonio Peñafiel, was the Director General of the Census Department of Mexico. The book was bound and organized in a traditional western way, is about the size of a notebook, and written in Spanish. The first half contains detailed explanations of the meaning of each geographical name and the second half contains colored pictographs corresponding to each place name.


I particularly enjoyed looking at this piece. I have traveled in Mexico and noticed many names of smaller towns in Nahuatl, but never knew the meaning of the name. I am studying Nahuatl at the University of Utah and I have some knowledge on how place names are formed but it was fascinating to not only learn the meaning behind the names but also see corresponding pictographs.

On the second visit to the Rare Books Department we looked at “contemporary” books, also pertaining to indigenous peoples of Latin America. My favorite piece was Codex Espangliensis: From Columbus to the Border Patrol.

N7433.4-G652-C63-1998-cover N7433.4-G652-C63-1998-Noctli
Codex espangliensis…
Guillermo Gomez-Peña
Santa Cruz, CA: Moving Parts Press, 1998
N7433.4 G652 C63 1998
Text in English and Spanish written by performance artist Guillermo Gomez-Peña, collage images by Enrique Chagoya and designed and printed by Felicia Rice.

This piece “confronts realities and surrealities of border culture, juxtaposing examples of graphic art from pre-Hispanic times to present-day Mexico with traditions of Western art and contemporary American pop-culture.” The book is structured as an accordion-fold similar to Mesoamerican codices. However, it is printed on one side only and thus can be read western-style. The print is black and red and the art style has a strong resemblance to Japanese manga and comic books. I plan to visit Rare Books soon and “read” this piece with more time to observe and pick up on the detail.

My experience with the rare book collections expanded my knowledge not only of what kinds of “books” exist, both in past and present times, but also how time periods effect contents and form.

As a student of the Nahuatl language it is very important to me to have access to codices and other material written in Nahuatl, from grammar to doctrines. It is also interesting to experience how the form of older texts, such as the accordion structure, has impacted contemporary texts and how these forms are used to make a statement. It is important to society to preserve these books in order to preserve knowledge and to allow for future studies of past societies. This opportunity was extremely enriching academically and all students should visit the rare book collections.

From Melissa Gutierrez:

At first I thought it was odd that we were going to the library to see old books, to be honest, at that moment I would rather have had a class discussion on the very many topics regarding the indigenous populations we had been learning about. However, going to see the rare book collections was a surreal experience. Having about 40 some books laid out on tables, waiting to be explored was an invitation to me. That invitation was to sit down and dive into history and discover. I found this experience to be powerful and enriching. The old books came to life, helping me picture and understand history on a whole new and different level. When I sat down with the books it gave me the opportunity to ask myself, “Do I value history?”


Arte mexicana
Antonio del Rincon (1556-1601)
En Mexico: en casa Pedro Balli, 1595
First edition
PM4063 R5

One of the books that I enjoyed analyzing was a book written in the 1500’s. This book was written by a Spanish priest who learned the language of Nahuatl. The book had grammar and a dictionary. The book was falling apart and not handwritten. While looking at this book I wondered what the Spanish priest thought as he was learning Nahuatl. Most Spanish priests believed that they were helping the indigenous peoples come to God by converting them to Catholicism. I wonder how it would have felt to be part of that project. Did the Spanish priest have indigenous people help him learn and understand Nahuatl? These are the kinds of questions I asked myself while analyzing the book.

From Ann Wilcox

Chanccani quipu
Cecilia Vicuña
New York: Granary Books, 2012
N7433.4 V536 C48 2012

The piece that impressed me the most was Chancanni Quipu. It was a modern quipu that had writing on the wool, rather than knots in the wool. The writing was of a Chancanni poem. I thought this piece was interesting because it had a mix of the ancient system of writing of the quipu and modern system of writing with words.

The writing was a mix of Spanish and the Chanccani language. Accompanying the quipu was a translation of the poem and a brief history and explanation of how quipu are made.

The important thing about this piece is that it takes ancient culture and practice and puts a modern spin on it. The author, using diverse cultural cues, was able to communicate in a way that people from diverse cultures could understand. I think that it also shows that there are many forms of quipu now and authors can be creative while still connecting with their culture. It is an important piece because it wasn’t a bound book or words or illustrations on paper. This was a new medium that the author found to communicate and still be effective.

The experience of seeing the rare books, especially in the context of indigenous work, opened my eyes to the amount of types of book and recording methods there exist in the world. It impressed me that there were so many perspectives shown through the pieces. I valued that I got to touch and read the book in person and not through pictures. It was a very special experience and I don’t think that it can be replicated. I will always appreciate this experience, especially when I am visiting museums and see works of art and literature that are behind glass. I will think of this experience, when I got to handle the books myself.

From Miranda Best:

Codex Tulane
Graz, Austria: Akademische Druck-u Verlaganstalt; New Orleans: Middle American Research Institute, Tulane University, 1991
F1421 T95 no. 61
Facsimile with introduction by Mary Elizabeth Smith (b. 1932)

The first piece I would like to discuss is the Codex Tulane, ca. 16th century. The codex, originally made from overlapping animal hide, is an early Colonial manuscript from the Mixtec-speaking region of southern Mexico. The manuscript presents genealogical information with a list of native rulers of two Mixtec communities. Within this list are contained more than one hundred male and female figures, seated opposite of their spouses.

The piece is beautifully made. Although we were only able to see a facsimile, it is wonderful to experience these pieces in physical form. How amazing it would have been to touch and see the original piece!

Something interesting about the experience I had was that when I approached the codex, the way it was rolled up was in a way so that I would be unrolling it from the bottom and opening it up. When I began to see the figures, they were very simply drawn, but further up, as I unrolled the codex, the figures began to be a little more elaborate. What I observed is that it was the same figures, but something was added onto them as it went up each row. I did not quite understand what was going on until Luise [Poulton] explained that it could be like genealogy and it made a lot more sense to me. I felt like I could connect with what I was seeing. I loved being able to see the advancement of the figures. It made me wonder if it meant that there was a connection with those who seemed to be of higher power (higher up on the codex) and those who were further down (with less details and figures added).

The first day in the library, I had a hard time finding pieces that I could really connect to. All of the pieces were beautiful and I thought they were interesting, but I did not feel anything super exciting about them. I enjoyed this codex after I understood a little more about it and I liked learning about the resources we have available to us. I would love to take more advantage of this and utilize it to learn more about the history of these people. I thought it was very interesting that Luise pointed out the importance of looking at the “who, what, where, when, why and how.” Not because it is something new to me, but rather something that Professor Dulfano is always pointing out to us. We cannot read a piece of literature without understanding the context and its background. It makes for a much more fulfilling experience.




Ump’it u yeybilil ti’ u libroil Mormon: hahil t’an Yo’olal Cristo
Salt Lake City: Dza’an ohetbil tumen u Iglesia Jesucristo ti’ le Ma’alob Maco’obo’ tu Dzo’oc kino’oba’, 1983
BX8625 M39 1983

The second day in the library was a real treat. I felt a connection with a lot of the pieces and definitely enjoyed the experience more that day than the first day. Of all the pieces I saw, my two most favorite were the Book of Mormon, written in a Maya language and the 1997 piece by Joe D’Ambrosio, Oaxaca and the Saguaro. It is one of one hundred and twenty five copies made. The University of Utah copy is numbered 19.

Oaxaca (Wa-ha-ka) and the saguaro (sa-wah-row)…
Joe D’Ambrosio
Phoenix, AZ: D’Ambrosio, 1996
N7433.4 D34 O29 1996

This book was hand bound by the author in a brown cloth and Mexican bark paper. The front cover has a beautifully structured cactus with twisted material to give more structure to the cactus.


Throughout this book, you will find beautifully crafted pop-up images and real feathers, as well as other illustrations.

This piece made me very excited for numerous reasons. First, I love books made from raw hide/leather, or other natural materials. I find them so beautiful and real. The cactus made it even more exciting to see what was inside. As I flipped through the pages, I really enjoyed seeing the illustration because they reminded me a lot of my childhood. Pop-up books were my favorite as a child, so it was a nice moment to reminisce. Other illustrations in this book continued to remind me of my childhood and some of the art projects I did. There was one page in particular that was decorated with a metallic material. It almost seemed to me to be made from gum wrappers. I used to peel apart gum wrappers and use the silver part to make figures on another piece of paper. This particular page reminded me of that.


Generally speaking, it was a beautifully made book and very enjoyable to look at. But it was an even more delightful experience because it had a nostalgic feeling for me.

As I mentioned above, I had a better experience the second day than the first. I don’t know if it was because there were more pieces that caught my attention or if it was because we had more time to look at everything. But it really made me appreciate the resources we have and made me think how privileged we are to have access to such “rare objects.” Many of these books, codices, etc. are completely from “out of our world” and we have the opportunity to step inside the world of others and experience it. If we had had more time, I would have loved to look longer at all the books and discover what they were all about. As it was, I only got to observe a small portion of everything. I would love to be able to go back and see what more there is and learn more.

Book of the week – Preghiera alla vergine…


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Preghiera alla Vergine…
Modena: Il Bulino edizioni d’arte, 2007

Facsimile. This illuminated manuscript belonged to a young woman of the Veronese aristocracy. Produced on vellum in the second half of the thirteenth century, it is illustrated throughout with miniatures and consists of forty-two folios, or eighty-four pages. The first two folios are written in a Gothic semi-italic hand. The text is a prayer to the Virgin Mary and one of the oldest known prayers written in the Veronese vernacular.

The rest of the manuscript consists of the legends of Saint George of Cappadocia and Saint Margherita of Antiochia. The script for the legends is Gothic rotunda. At the end of the manuscript are two full page illuminations: Christ in Majesty surrounded by the four evangelists, and Saint Christopher.

A note of ownership indicates that the manuscript was entrusted to the Monastery of Santa Maria Maddalena in 1350. This monastery thrived between 1200 and 1300 as a harbor for young women.

Graphic miniatures illustrate the story of the tribulations of George of Cappadocia, from the time he declared to the Emperor Diocletian his Christian faith, until, after seven years of torture, he was beheaded for not recanting. The story ends with an illumination for which this legend is best known: St George astride a horse, piercing with a lance a dragon led on a leash by a princess. In 1435 the painter Pisanello used this subject on his fresco in the church of Saint Anastasia in Verona. Georgius (ca. 275-23 April 303), born of a Roman army officer from Cappadocia (present-day Turkey) and a Syrian mother, served as an officer in the Roman army.

The legend of the holy Margherita, a shepherdess of Antiochia, tells the story of the prefect Olibrio, who falls in love with Margherita. Her refusal of his advances was deemed an act of rebellion against the Roman Empire. Margherita was tortured and beheaded. Her story became a favorite subject of Christian art, in both the East (tenth century frescos adorn a church in Goreme, Cappadocia) and in the West, including a painting by Tiziano in 1550.

The manuscript is an exceptional example of early interconnection between text and illustration, as small paintings weave in and out amidst the written word. This interplay of text and image was used as an instrument in helping the viewer, if not the reader, comprehend the divine message.

ذکری شکسپير


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


“o Prince of Poetry”

Dhikrá Shaksipīr
Aḥmad Zakī Abū Shādī (1892-1955)
Egypt: al-Maṭbaʻah al-Salafīyah, 1926
First edition
PJ7808.S5 D55 1926

The Egyptian poet Aḥmad Zakī Abū Shādī was a man of many talents. Not only was he renowned as a poet and man of letters, he was also trained as a scientist and physician, and he was fascinated by beekeeping, founding professional beekeeping associations and publishing numerous works on the subject. Besides his native Egypt, he had connections to both England and the United States. He lived in England, where he earned his medical degree, from 1912-1922. In 1920, he married an Englishwoman, Annie Bamford, returning with her to Egypt 1922. Following her death in 1946 he emigrated to the United States, where he continued to be active in the fields of Arabic literature and beekeeping until his untimely death of a stroke in 1955. His private papers and many of his books are now housed in the Marriott Library Special Collections (Ahmed Zaki Abu Shadi papers, 1892-1955).

Among such books is “Dhikrá Shaksipīr,” whose title translates as “Remembrance of Shakespeare.” In his introduction, Abu Shadi explains that it is a collection of three poems that he composed at the invitation of the Poetry Society in London to celebrate the eventual reopening of the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre that had burned down in 1926. He says that the Society had invited poets from around the world to participate in this. Based on the Society’s guidelines, the three poems are: A sonnet ; a quatrain suitable for posting on the wall of the Theatre ; and an unrestricted poem. This last one is a long ode in traditional Arabic poetic style in praise of Shakespeare.

In his introduction, Abu Shadi concludes with the statement that he is having this work privately published [in Egypt] to make it more accessible to the Arab reader. He laments that Arabic speakers who do not know English are missing out on Shakespearian literature, and he urges that they search out and read Arabic translations of Shakespeare’s works, and recommends in particular those done by the Egytian poet Khalil Mutran (1872-1949).

“Diverse minds that tell of your guiding light humbly approached you, o Prince of Poetry
For the Theatre, despite its burning, due to your unique spirit remains a marvelous achievement for all eternity
Look, then, at the thousands gathered, whether in body or in spirit
They listen to great wisdome, sanctify8ing in you your genius; thus finding the good fortune of those who adore.”

Contribution and translation by Cathy Rockwell, Special Collections Middle East Cataloger

Book of the Week, after a conversation with a reader — Ka buke o na berita amen a kauoha


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“A eia kekahi, i kona heluhelu ana, ua hoopihaia oia me ka Uhane o ka Haku.”


San Francisco, 1855
First edition

The first missionary work in Hawai’i for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began in 1850, when Charles Rich called for the establishment of a mission on what was then known as the Sandwich Islands. Of the ten men that answered the call, five remained after several months. The first conversions came on the island of Maui on August 6, 1851. By 1854, more than four thousand native islanders had converted.

The Book of Mormon was translated into Hawaiian by Elders George Quayle Cannon, William Farrer, and Jonatana H. Napela, a Hawaiian native. It was published five years after the first Mormon missionaries arrived on the islands. Three thousand copies were printed in San Francisco, two hundred of these were bound. Nearly all of the copies were shipped to Hawai’i. Most of these were destroyed in a fire in 1868. An estimated 30 copies of the 1855 edition survive today.

Earth Day — “…oceans both…”


, , , , , , , , ,

“You oceans both, I close with you,
We murmur alike reproachfully rolling sands and drift,
knowing not why,
These little shreds indeed standing for you and me and all.”


Walt Whitman (1819-1892)
East Hampton, NY: 2015

From the artist’s statement: “both a hunt for, and a despair of, meaning. The ‘Likeness’ that the poet recognizes in the sea-tossed windrows of: ‘Chaff, straw…’ describe a purposeless world…[Whitman’s] life persistence after the abyss has looked us in the eye, is heroism. By setting the text on diagonals and verticals at odds page to page, the book captures the poet’s bleak mood. Whitman’s own resolution takes the visual form of bright colors, and a text that meanders – in and out as the tide – but does not dissipate.”

Unique artist’s book by Barry McCallion. Unnumbered pages, including title-page and half-title and colophon. Text printed on paper mounted on blue Saint Armand paper, interspersed with the broken up text on cream Richard de Bas, painted in various colored India inks, collaged onto various grids which form crosshatching. Binding by Joelle Webber: hand-sewn in gold suede with onlays of yellow, red, green, blue and white forming cross hatch on front panel. Housed in red cloth with blue edges over boards, clamshell box with title on spine on paper with repeat of crosshatch motif, crosshatch motif repeated on front panel. Signed by the artist.