artists specialised in the production of ex-libris.
One of the leading wood engravers associated
with the development of private presses and the
return to romanticism in design was James Guthrie
(1874-1952). Guthrie designed a number of bookplates,
and was editor of both The Bookplate Magazine and The
Libraries & Archives
and Ex Libris
From earliest times, people have indicated
their ownership of texts with a variety of marks.
The ex-libris, or bookplate, emerged along
with printing in Germany in the late 15th century.
Ex-libris can take a number of forms: as
a label pasted into a book; as a stamp applied to the
volume; or less commonly, as supralibros,
which were heraldic motifs stamped onto the outer boards.
Common design elements included armorial bearings,
often embellished with architectural references or
ornamental additions drawn from nature, such as foliage
and wreaths. Others were essentially pictorial. Nearly
all were minor works of decorative art in their own
Bookplates reached the height of their popularity
domestically in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth
centuries. Not only was it considered the height of
fashion for you or your institution to own your very
own ex-libris, but, following the publication
in 1880 of J. Leicester Warren’s Guide to
the study of Book-plates, there emerged a certain
vogue in collecting them.
Below are some late C19th and C20th examples from
a small collection of bookplates relating to books
or collections in Special Libraries and Archives.
outstanding library collections are the amalgamation
of the collections of the fifteenth century King's College
and the sixteenth century Marischal College, with continual
enrichments from donors to this day. The University has
26 works that
have been at King's College since the fifteenth century
as part of the founder's own library.
collection, with over 3,500 books and 1,000 pamphlets,
plus numerous sermons, official reports and satirical
verse, is one of the largest Jacobite Collections in
the country and provides invaluable insights into late
17th and 18th century society in general, in particular,
the various Jacobite risings. Visit the ‘Drawn
Sword’ database to gain access to
c.1,300 loose engravings and woodcuts that form part
of the MacBean collection.
ranks as one of the major railway collections in Britain.
The collection was bequeathed to the University of
Aberdeen by Andrew C. O’ Dell (1909-66), first
Professor of Geography in the University, and it is the
legacy of a lifelong study of transport, especially railways. The
collection includes all aspects of transport with an
emphasis on the North and North-east of Scotland, particularly
the history of the Great North of Scotland Railway Company
University holds many manuscript collections and printed
volumes, of, or relating to, John Malcolm Bulloch. Bulloch
graduated from this University with an MA in 1888.
He worked for 'Aberdeen Free Press' initially, then
later, for various papers in London including 'The
Graphic', of which he was editor. He became a well-known
literary and theatre critic. Despite being London-based,
he retained a deep commitment to his roots in Aberdeen,
with regular contributions to the 'Aberdeen University
Review' and work with the Third Spalding Club.
in 1683, the Bibliotheck of Kirkwall was the oldest
public library in Scotland. In 1890, its 350
volume collection was put up for public auction and
bought by an Archdeacon of Orkney who gave them to
this University in 1914. The books are mainly
from the 16th and 17th centuries and most are theological.
The collection includes editions of Calvin, Bèze,
Knox, Zanchius and Rutherford. The volumes throw
light on the social, political and academic debates
of the time, with rare 17th century texts (academic
theses) of Andrew Aidie (later Principal of Marischal
College), and Thomas Reid, as well as other Aberdeen
Libraries & Archives
of the Gilroy Bequest
Gilroy, M.A., B.D. (Aberd.), D.D. (St. And.) was Regius
Professor of Hebrew and Semitic languages at the University
of Aberdeen from 1895 to 1931. A Divinity Scholarship
was created in his name in 1962 with funds from his