Sunday, May 2, 2010

Some rare gems

While dedicated antique bookshops are rare, digging around old bookstores, one can come across some gems. Paramount Book Store on Janpath, New Delhi, is one such store. Ask owner Naresh Kambiri about antique books and he produces a fragile International Library of Famous Literature carefully wrapped in a dusty plastic bag. One of 20, the book had been edited by Dr. Richard Garnett of the British Museum and was published in 1900. Rare books by Kashmiri Sufi saint Lalla Rukh are available too. But there isn't much of a demand. “We've only been getting enquiries, that too mostly from foreigners,” says Kambiri.

The Oxford Bookstore has a section on antique and rare books. These include first editions, limited editions, rare publications and out-of-print books. It is interesting to see tomes like Voyages and Travels: India, Ceylon, The Red Sea, Abyssinia and Egypt (first printed in 1811), A New Account of the East Indies: 1688 to 1723 (first printed in 1739), India and its Native Princes: Travels in Central India and in the Presidencies of Bombay and Bengal by Louis Rousselet (1875) and A History of the Indian Mutiny by G.W. Forrest (first printed in 1904) resting alongside the latest books.

Full report here Hindu

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