Saturday, 13 March 2010

A Hundred and Fifty Year Old Paper

Found it!

After a far too lengthy search for it, I have finally found the cardboard documents tube of 1850s newpaper prints I bought in Oxford. For long paranoid weeks, I had thought it was accidentally taken out with the recycling. It turns out, of course, that it had actually rolled under one of the many bookcases in the living room and despite many frantic efforts, remained at large until about two hours ago.

As the story goes, I was passing through the city of dreaming spires and I passed by Sanders of Oxford. I peered into the window of their 16th century building and they happened to be having a sale. Aside from beautiful and really expensive old things, they also sold beautiful and not very expensive old things.

For less than the cost of a pack of glitter pens each (yes, I bought some new glitter pens - actually the Designer bought me some glitter pens - dull anecdote, will stop now), I bought some old newspaper clippings. I wonder now if these scraps owe their existence to all Victorian craze of scrapbooking that tore apart medieval manuscripts for the purposes of entertaining small children. Look, little Timmy, here is a five hundred year old book! Why don't you cut out all the pretty pictures for your scrap book! 

There are utterly irreplaceable manuscripts that have been carved up in this way. The destruction of books is a heartbreaking topic, so I won't go into how visitors to cathedrals used to have their pick of which historiated initial they wanted to take home as a souvenir (some of these have since been reclaimed and sewn back in).

My scanner is a standard A4 size and the full-pages of The Illustrated London News are closer to a modern B4 (read: my scanner is not big enough), so some clever patchwork may have to happen at some point. But here is a brief glimpse of the various bits and pieces I've scanned this morning.

Dear reader, I'm afraid you will have to brace yourself for the deluge of scans from my collection and consequent gushing about it.

More photos under the cut.

Victorian adverts, they are awesome. More on them in an upcoming post.

There's an awesome article on the meeting between the American President and Native American representatives from the Ponca, Pawnee and Pottowattamie.

Concerning the ongoings at Westminster School on Pancake Day.

Bridesmaids of the Royal Marriage, 1853.

a spire, suspected of dreaming

Bodleian Library, of legendary proportions 
(it seemed appropriate to post my photo of it along with scans of old paper)

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