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A roundup of some recent rare book news. 


1000-Year-Old Manuscript Contains Cure for Antibiotic-Resistant Infection

Bald's Leechbook

If ever you need to explain the importance of preserving old books, cite this story! Bald's Leechbook, and Old English manuscript in the collection of the British Library contains a 9th-Century Anglo-Saxon salve for eye infections. Researchers have found that it cures one of the scourges of modern hospitals, the antibiotic-resistant infection MRSA. Demonstrating that ancient medicine wasn't all leeches and quackery. More on this story from the BBC...


Books Presumed Stolen from NYPL Re-appear After 24 Years

FBI seize them... 


A Book the Pope Couldn't Burn Rediscovered

A rare copy of Varia Opuscula Theologica by Doctoris Francisco Suarez, which was banned but the Pope and ordered burned in 1679, was found in a charity shop in the UK this week. What strange journey has this volume taken over the last 300 years? More on this story...


ISIS Financed in-part by Stolen Antiquities

ISIS Funded by Stolen Antiquities?Still on the subject of book burning, an article by Barbara Basbanes claims that the sale of looted antiquities, including books, is part of the fundraising efforts underpining ISIS in the Middle-East. While the headline attracted controversy for attributing all of ISIS fundraising success to rare books, the underlining story makes clear that books may only be a part of their funding , and does raise concerns that ISIS' much publicized destruction of ancient remains may be a smokescreen for a lucrative trade in stolen antiquities. Read this story on


Will Signed Kindles Ever Become Collectible?

I suspect the answer will be a resounding"No!," but you never know...


Library of Congress Exhibition on Early Printing

A new exhibition, "First Among Many: The Bay Psalm Books and Early Moments in American Printing," opens at the Library of Congress on June 4. More details... 


And finally,

The Folio Society's Illustrated Dune

The Folio Society's editions may not be rare like a First Folio, but they are certainly beautiful books and very collectible. The most-recent is an illustrated edition of Frank Herbert's Dune, to mark the seminal science-fiction novel's 50th anniversary. Artist Sam Weber created some stunning artwork for the book, and he discusses his artwork and the book in this interview for