The developed system of book antiques trade, with the relevant rules and laws, is one of the most important components in creating the most favorable conditions for the emergence of a collection of antique printed and manuscript books. In book antiques, as, perhaps, in no other area of antique collecting, a competent intermediary specialist is needed between the collector and the owner of the subject of his interest.
Antique collectors in Europe were engaged in the sale of ancient books in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The first catalogs of old books that were sold at fairs in Leipzig and Frankfurt were published in Germany in 1564. This date is considered the beginning of the professional trade in book antiques.
Until the 18th century, antique books were sold among other antiques. Only at the turn of the XVIII-XIX centuries, the trade in ancient books became a separate type of antique trade. The largest centers for the sale of antique books in these centuries were Paris, London, Munich, Milan, Amsterdam. Continue reading