- College of Information Studies

Summer 2 (2013)
University of Maryland – College Park
LBSC611: History of the Book
Stephen Greenberg
e-mail: sgreenb5@umd.edu
Course Outline and Supplemental Readings
Required Books:
Richard Benson, The Printed Picture (New York: The Museum of Modern Art,
John Carter & Nicolas Barker, ABC for Book Collectors. 8th ed. (New Castle,
DE: Oak Knoll Press, 2004). Older editions are suitable as well.
David Pearson. Books as History. 2nd ed. (New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press,
2011). The first edition is also suitable.
S.H. Steinberg. Five Hundred Years of Printing. New Edition, revised by
John Trevitt (New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press, 1996).
Lecture Schedule:
Lecture 1: Introduction - A Common Vocabulary
Reading: Carter, entire (but quickly), Pearson, Chap. 1
7/10 Lecture 2: The Book before Printing
Reading: Pearson, Chap. 2.
7/15 Lecture 3: Incunabula
Reading: Steinberg, pp.3-70.
Field Trip. Details TBA.
7/22 Lecture 4: The 16th and 17th Centuries
Reading: Steinberg, Chap. 2. Pearson, Chap. 3
7/24 Lecture 5: The 18th Century
Reading: Pearson, Chaps. 4 & 8.
7/29 Lecture 6: Book Illustration before 1850
Reading: Steinberg, 70-73. Benson, 6-47
7/31 Lecture 7: The Mechanized Book and the Mass Book Trade
Reading: Steinberg, Chap 3. Pearson, Chaps. 5 & 6.
Lecture 8: Book Illustration after 1850: Lithography & Photography
Reading: Benson, 48-74, 96-174, 184-272.
Lecture 9: The Fine Press Book
Reading: Steinberg, Chap. 4,
8/12 Lecture 10: Book Collecting
Reading: Steinberg, Chap. 4, 5, and Conclusion
8/14 Lecture 11: The Post-modern Book
Reading: Pearson, Chap. 8. Benson, 272-312
A Note on the Readings:
Carter is a glossary, but one that is a joy to read. A familiarity with Carter
ensures a shared vocabulary with which to approach highly specialized
Benson is a new addition to this course. It started out as the catalogue of
an exhibit at MoMA, but it is a work of considerable scholarship and practical
A colleague of mine describes Pearson as biblio-porn: page after page of
beautiful books. It’s my attempt to give us a shared library of the stuff I
cannot show you in class.
1. Students will select a printed book from before 1850 and compare it with
a modern edition of the same title. A formal collation is not required, but
students are expected to comment on type, paper, binding, illustration,
method of production, readership (i.e. – target audience), plus any
characteristics of special interest. The description should be 3-4 pages in
length, and is due at to fifth class meeting (7/22). This assignment is worth
35% of the course grade.
2. Students will select two monographs or four articles (or some similar
combination) from the supplemental reading list and write a 10-15 page
paper exploring a particular topic in detail. Students may suggest or request
additional readings. Topics must be approved by the fifth class meeting
(7/22); the paper is due at the last class meeting (8/14). This assignment is
worth 50% of the course grade.
3. All topic proposals and written assignments may be submitted
electronically. The instructor will acknowledge receipt of any electronic
submission within 24 hours. If no acknowledgement is received, contact the
instructor ASAP. Deadline for electronic submission is 8:45PM (ie – when
class is scheduled to end).
4. 15% of the course grade will be based on class participation, etc.
This is a concentrated semester, with a lot to cover in a small number of
LONG evenings. Moreover, the instructor expects all students to take an
active part in classroom discussion. Therefore, please plan to attend ALL
class sessions. University of Maryland attendance standards will (of course!)
be observed, but long weekends at Rehoboth or the Outer Banks are not
considered excused absences.
Supplemental Reading List
Students will select two monographs or four articles (or some similar
combination) from this list and write a 10-15 page paper exploring a
particular topic in detail. Students may suggest or request additional
readings. This is a broad subject, and this assignment can be interpreted
VERY broadly, but your sanity will be less threatened if you stay within the
suggested categories. The list is somewhat weighted toward classics; your
selection need not be.
Please note that these are suggestions only. Note also that the Marylandia
and Rare Books Collections in Hornbake Library have excellent resources for
this assignment. See their website at www.lib.umd.edu/RARE/index.html
Again, topics must be approved by the fifth class meeting (7/22); the paper
is due at the last class meeting (8/14). This assignment is worth 50% of the
course grade.
Descriptive Bibliography and General Works:
Fredson C. Bowers, Principles of Bibliographical Description (1949).
Robert Darnton, The Case for Books (2009)
Lucien Febvre and Henri-Jean Martin, The Coming of the Book (1984).
Philip Gaskell, A New Introduction to Bibliography (1972).
Stephen Ferguson, “History of the Book: Field Notes of a Curator.” Rare
Books and Manuscript Librarianship 14:1 (1999), 33-48.
W.W. Greg, “What is Bibliography?” Transactions of the Bibliographical
Society 12 (1911-13), 39-53. Any selection of articles or books by Greg is
also suitable.
Lynette Hunter, “Adaption and/or Revision in Early Quartos of Romeo and
Juliet.” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America 101:1 (2007), 554.
Norma Levarie, The Art & History of Books (1995).
Falconer Madan, “On Method in Bibliography.” Transactions of the
Bibliographical Society 1 (1892-93), 91-102.
Robert McKerrow, An Introduction to Bibliography for Literary Students
David Alan Richards, “Kipling and the Bibliographers.” Papers of the
Bibliographical of America 102:2 (2008), 221-234.
Laura Stalker and Jackie M. Dooley, “Descriptive Cataloging and Rare
Books.” Rare Books and Manuscripts Librarianship 7.1 (1992), 7-23.
G. Thomas Tanselle, Selected Studies in Bibliography (1979) or any selection
of articles by GTT. He is the most respected and prolific bibliographical
theorist of our era, and has written on every subject in this list.
David VanderMeulen, Where Angels Fear to Tread: Descriptive Bibliography
and Alexander Pope (1988).
Incunabula and Earlier:
Helen Barolini, Aldus and his Dream Book (1992).
T.H. Barrett, The Woman Who Discovered Printing (2008)
Peter Beal, In Praise of Scribes: Manuscripts and their Makers in 17th
Century England. (1998)
Elizabeth Eisenstein, The Printing Revolution in Early Modern Europe (1983)
Elizabeth Eisenstein, Divine Art, Infernal Machine: The Reception of Printing
in the West (2011)
Lotte Hellinga, Caxton in Focus (1982)
Sandra Hindman (ed.), Printing the Written Word: The Social History of
Books, c. 1450-1520 (1991).
Janet Ing, Johann Gutenberg and his Bible (1988).
Paul Needham, “Counting Incunables: The IISTC CD-ROM.” Huntington
Library Quarterly 61 (1999-2000), 456-529.
Allan Stevenson, The Problem of the Missale Speciale (1967).
Roger Stoddard, Marks in Books (1985).
William Sherman, Used Books: Marking Readers in Renaissance England
Philip Teigen, “Concurrent Printing of the Gutenberg Bible and the Proton
Milliprobe Analysis of its Ink,” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of
America 87 (1993): 437-51. If this topic intrigues, Teigen’s footnotes will
supply whatever other readings are needed.
Adrian Wilson, The Making of the Nuremberg Chronicle (1976).
Hand Press Printing:
Cyprian Blagden, The Stationers’ Company: A History (1960).
Peter W.M. Blayney, The Bookshops in Paul’s Cross Churchyard (1990).
Robert Darnton, The Great Cat Massacre (1984) or The Literary Underground
of the Old Regime (2005).
Charlton Hinman, The Printing and Proof-Reading of the First Folio of
Shakespeare, 2 vols. (1963). This counts as two books, but you must take a
good look at the Norton facsimile of the First Folio to make sense of what
Hinman was up to.
Valerie Hotchkiss & Fred C. Robinson, English in Print: From Caxton to
Shakespeare to Milton (2008).
Adrian Johns, The Nature of the Book: Print and Knowledge in the Making
Erick Kelemen, “More Evidence for the Date of A Testimonie of Antiquitie.”
The Library , 7th Series, 7:4 (2006), 361-376.
Joseph Moxon, Mechanick Exercises on the Whole Art of Printing (1683-4,
rep. 1978)
Michael Pollak, “The Performance of the Wooden Printing Press.” Library
Quarterly 42 (1972), 218-264.
Richard-Gabriel Rummonds, Printing on the Iron Handpress (1997)
Maria Wakely, “Printing and Double-Dealing in Jacobean England.” The
Library, 7th Series, 8:2 (2007), 119-153.
Book Illustration and Photography:
John Buchanan-Brown, Early Victorian Illustrated Books (2005)
Bamber Gascoigne. How to Identify Prints. 2nd ed. (2004). The first edition
is also suitable.
Linda Hults, The Print in the Western World: An Introductory History (1996)
William M. Ivins, Jr. How Prints Look (rev. ed. 1987)
Beaumont Newhall, The History of Photography (many, many editions)
Gregory R. Suriano, The British Pre-Raphaelite Illustrators (2003)
Nigel Tattersfield, John Bewick: Engraver on Wood 1760-1795 (2001)
Diane Waggoner, ed., The Pre-Raphaelite Lens (2010)
Carol Wax, The Mezzotint: History and Technique (1990)
Gabriel Austin, The Library of Jean Grolier (1971)
Douglas Ball, Victorian Publishers’ Bookbindings (1985).
Stuart Bennett, Trade Bookbindings in the British Isles (2004).
Mirjam M. Foot (ed.) Eloquent Witnesses: Bookbindings and Their History
(2004), or Bookbinders at Work (2005) Any work by Foot on any
bookbinding subject is worth reading as well, and she has written a great
Jonathan Hill, “From Provisional to Permanent: Books in Boards, 17901840.” Library 6th series 21 (1999), 247-273.
Hellmut Lehman-Haupt (ed.), Bookbinding in America: Three Essays (1967).
Howard Nixon, Five Centuries of English Bookbinding (1978).
David Pearson, English Bookbinding Styles, 1450-1800 (2004).
Barbara Shailor, The Medieval Book (1988).
Type and Paper:
Harry Carter, A View of Early Typography (1969)
Frederic W. Goudy, Goudy’s Type Designs (1978)
Dard Hunter, Papermaking: The History and Technique of an Ancient Craft
(1947, rep. 1978)
Martin Lowry, Nicholas Jenson and the Rise of Venetian Publishing in
Renaissance Europe (1991)
Stanley Morison, On Type Designs Past and Present (1926, rep. 1962) or
any selection of books or articles by Morison.
Paul Needham, “The Paper Supply of the Gutenberg Bible.” Papers of the
Bibliographical Society of America 79 (1985), 303-374.
M. B. Parkes, Pause and Effect: Punctuation in the West (1992)
Ari Rafaeli, Book Typography (2005)
Richard Southall, Printer’s Type in the Twentieth Century (2005)
Allen Stevenson, “Watermarks are Twins.” Studies in Bibliography 4 (195152), 57-91.
James Sutton and Alan Bartram, An Atlas of Typeforms, (1968, rep. 1988)
Walter Tracy, Letters of Credit: A View of Type Design (1986)
Daniel Berkeley Updike, Printing Types: Their History, Form, and Use (rep.
2001). Most recent edition of a classic.
Sven Birkerts, The Gutenberg Elegies: The Fate of Reading in an Electronic
Age (1994)
Jeff Gomez, Print is Dead: Books in Our Digital Age (2008)
Basil C. Kahan, Ottmar Mergenthaler, The Man And His Machine (2000).
Hellmut Lehman-Haupt, The Book in America (1939)
Beth Luey, Expanding the American Mind: Books and the Popularization of
Knowledge (2010)
David Pearson, “Books as History: Changing Values in a Digital Age.” Papers
of the Bibliographical Society of America 100:4 (2006), 405-424.
Anthony Rota, Apart from the Text (1998).
Michael Twyman, “Lithographic Stone and the Printing Trade in the
Nineteenth Century.” Journal of the Printing Historical Society 8 (1972), 131.
Fine Press and Book Collecting:
Richard Altick, The Scholar Adventurers (1950)
Nicholas Basbanes, A Gentle Madness (1995)
John Dieter Brinks, ed. The Book as a Work of Art (2005)
John Carter and Graham Pollard, An Enquiry into the Nature of Certain
Nineteenth Century Pamphlets (1934).
John Collins, The Two Forgers (1992).
Roderick Cave and Sarah Manson, A History of the Golden Cockerel Press
1920-1960 (2003).
Owen Gingerich, The Book Nobody Read: Chasing the Revolutions of
Nicolaus Copernicus (2004). Skim the astrophysics, concentrate on the
Victor E. Neuberg (ed.) Thomas Frognall Dibdin: Selections (1978) or any
edition of Dibdin’s Bibliomania you can find.
Leona Rostenberg and Madeleine Stern, Books Have Their Fates (2001) or
any other Rostenberg/Stern collaboration.
Marianne Tidcombe, The Doves Press (2003)
Susan O. Thompson, American Book Design and William Morris (1977)
Allison Wiggins, “What Did Renaissance Readers Write in their Printed Copies
of Chaucer?” The Library, 7th Series 9:1 (2008) 3-36.
Looking for a challenge?
Michael Suarez and H.R. Woodhuysen, The Oxford Companion to the Book, 2
vols. (2010).