Private Libraries and their Documentation, 1665–1830. Studying and Interpreting Sources
Rindert Jagersma, Helwi Blom, Evelien Chayes, and Ann-Marie Hansen (eds.)
Leiden: Brill, 2023
444 pages
ISBN: 978-90-04-54295-2 (hardback)
ISBN: 978-90-04-54296-9 (e-book PDF)

Edited volume
Serie: Library of the Written Word, 112
Publisher: Brill

Libraries: Worldcat

Abstract of volume:

The essays in Private Libraries and their Documentation revolve around the users and contents of early modern private book collections, and around the sources used to document and study these collections. They take the reader from large-scale projects on historical book ownership to micro-level research conducted on individual libraries, and from analyses of specific types of primary sources to general typologies and overviews by period and by region. As a result of its comparative approach and active engagement with questions regarding the nature, selection and accessibility of sources, the volume serves as a guide to sources and resources in different regions as well as to state-of the-art methods and interpretational approaches.

Publication of this volume in open access was made possible by the Ammodo KNAW Award 2017 for Humanities

This book is Open Access available
Link to volume:
Direct download: PDF (MB)

Table of content:

List of Illustrations
Notes on Contributors


Rindert Jagersma, Helwi Blom and Ann-Marie Hansen, Goldmines or Minefields? Private Libraries and Their Documentation (1665–1830)

Part 1: Private Libraries in Use

1. Alex Alsemgeest, The Leufstabruk Catalogues: Life Narrative, Collector’s Rationale and Network of Charles de Geer
2. Anders Toftgaard, A Private Library as a Material History of the Book. Otto Thott’s Encyclopedic Library in Copenhagen
3. Paul G. Hoftijzer, A Collegiant Library in Rijnsburg at the Beginning of the Eighteenth Century: The Books of Jan Matthijsz van Drieborn (d. 1715)
4. Laurence Brockliss, Sharing Books in Eighteenth-Century Languedoc: The Library of Jean-François Séguier
5. Pierre Delsaerdt, Private Libraries and the Second-Hand Book Trade in Early Modern Academia. The Case of Leuven University 1425–1797
6. Róbert Oláh, Book Auctions at the Reformed College of Debrecen (1743–1842)

Part 2: Uncovering Private Libraries in Archival Sources

7. Giliola Barbero, Some Notes on Sixteenth- and Seventeenth-Century Library Archives as a Source for the Reconstruction of Private Libraries in Italy and the Vatican City
8. Federica Dallasta, Book Ownership in Parma, Italy (1665–1830)
9. Andrea Reyes Elizondo, “For Don Antonio Meave I Leave the Three Folios of My Dear and Venerable Father Louis of Granada”: Tracing Books in the Archivo General de Notarías of Mexico City
10. Idalia García Aguilar and Alberto José Campillo Pardo, Private Libraries in New Spain: A Project in Progress

Part 3: Private Library Research in Regional Contexts

11. Pedro Rueda Ramírez and Lluís Agustí, Mercury in the Republic of Letters: Private Libraries in Spanish Book Sales Catalogues (1660–1800)
12. Michał Bajer, Lists of Private Book Collections in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Royal Prussia, 1680–1830
13. István Monok, Surviving Records of Private Book Collections in the Kingdom of Hungary and the Transylvanian Principality between 1665 and 1830
14. Jonas Thorup Thomsen, From Extensive Learned Libraries to Modest Book Collections: Research on Danish Private Book Collections of the Long Eighteenth Century
15. Fan Wang, ‘The Cornerstone of Scholarship’: Library Catalogues in Late Imperial China

Part 4: Building a Field of Study

16. Joseph L. Black, The Private Libraries in Renaissance England (PLRE) Project: An Overview
17. Giovanna Granata, Philosophers’ Private Libraries (1600–1800)
18. Marieke van Delft, Private Libraries and the Material Evidence in Incunabula Database
19. Otto S. Lankhorst, “Ces documents rédigés à la hâte et imprimés avec assez peu de soin”. The Long Road to the Realisation of Book Sales Catalogues Online


Vignet met interieur van een bibliotheek, Josua van Solingen, naar Laurens Jacobsz. van der Vinne, 1727 – ca. 1750. Rijksmuseum RP-P-1937-1768 en LWW coverimage (Brill)