Archive for the ‘Old vs. New’ Category

Charles R. Darwin. Three books: The Origins of Species, 1936 (WorldCat); Animals and Plants Under Domestication, Vol. 1, 1900 (WorldCat); Animals and Plants Under Domestication, Vol. 2, 1868 (WorldCat).

"It has been shown from many facts that the largest amount of life can be supported on each area, by great diversification or divergence in the structure and constitution of its inhabitants."

"In scientific investigations it is permitted to invent any hypothesis, and if it explains various large and independent classes of facts it rises to the rank of a well-grounded theory."

"How inexplicable is the similar pattern of the hand of a man, the foot of a dog, the wing of a bat, the flipper of a seal on the doctrine of independent acts of creation!"

"...I believe in the truth of the theory {of Natural Selection} because it collects, under one point of view, and gives a rational explanation of, many apparently independent classes of facts."

"From the strong principle of inheritance, any selected variety will tend to propagate its new and modified form."

"Furthermore, I am convinced that Natural Selection has been the most important, but not exclusive, means of modification."

"Even when we are quite alone, how often do we think with pleasure or pain of what others think of us?"

"At the moment of action, man will no doubt be apt to follow the stronger impulse; and though this may occasionally prompt him to the noblest deeds, it will more commonly lead him to gratify his own desires at the expense of other men."

More images at Flickr.

Read Full Post »

Today we stumble upon your favorite French queen, and mine: Marie Antoinette. I don’t know what keeps me going back to French History, but there I was again, scanning the shelves. Two books caught my eye: Memoirs of the Private Life of Marie Antoinette (WorldCat) and Secret Memoirs of Princess Lambelle (WorldCat), printed in 1917 and 1901 respectively.

I found that in both books, the embellisments, illustrations, the typography and even the width of the margins on the page, all combined to to form a feeling of opulance that reflected the subject matter.

Nothing says royalty like gold filligree

Nothing says royalty like gold filligree

Nice brackets [this is good]

Nice brackets

I also came across a reprint of Private Life, The Memoirs of Marie Antoinette (WorldCat), but it was a lifeless book in comparison to the 1917 version.

Newer book, boring cover

Newer book, boring cover

1917 version

1917 version

This is a little embarrassing, missing the final e

This is a little embarrassing, missing the final "e"

Ah, much better

Ah, much better

Read Full Post »


Talk about a great find. I don’t really remember what started me down the Technology section of our research library, but at one point, I found myself face to face with a 1975 edition of Joy of Cooking (WorldCat). I took it off the shelf and opened it up to a random page on preparing game – rabbits and squirrels. Looking around to see what else was at hand, I found a 1972 edition of the The Epicurean (WorldCat) which was an “unabridged, unedited” version taken from the plates of the first printing in 1893. Oh man, what fun! I spent about 20 minutes reading on the differences of serving a French party versus an American party versus a German party (all parties had 24 persons). Turns out the Germans don’t get mineral waters during the appetizers.

Duly noted.

Speaking of the Germans, I kept looking around and found Spanish cookbooks, regional cookbooks from America, Kosher cookbooks and even one on the cuisine of South Africa. But most impressive was a 1972 printing of the Nurenburgerische Koch Buch. Now, I don’t know German but I think that’s a book on the food stylings of 17th century Nurenburg. I tried looking for mention of¬†hossenfeffer to no avail.

There are two recipes for French Onion Soup - one from Joy and the other from The Epicurean. I'm going to try them both out and see which taste better.

Beef hasn't changed that much since 1975.

Good to know.

In the time before photographs, people went to town on the ink drawings.

Wow, looks like the printing on US paper currency.

Is that a wand?

Another white beer soup? Why yes, please!

Read Full Post »

I’ve worked at a university Library¬†for 8 years now and have just started to explore it. That’s pretty sad for someone who loves to read. So I thought I’d start a blog where I search out the strange, rare, cool, interesting books that can be found in any of the campus libraries.

To start, I gathered up three different printings of The Odyssey, by Homer.

Book the first was published in 1932 by Oxford University Press (WorldCat) and of the three, it is the only book written in prose (the others use verse). It shows some wear in the cover and the binding but was still pretty manageable. Also this book had a nice drawing on the inside.

The second book was published in 1965 by Harper and Row.

And the third copy of The Odyssey was published by Hackett Publishing in the year 2000 (WorldCat).

Read Full Post »