A book cover can tell its own story. During the early history of book production, the manner in which a book was bound was unique. Each hand-crafted binding reveals information about the individuals who owned books, their social status, professions and how they valued the texts within.

The type of covering also demonstrates the skill of the binder and the fashion of the times in which it was made.  This exhibition includes examples of the finest luxury coverings through to the purely utilitarian.  It features a selection of books from the University of Aberdeen’s Special Collections that were bound for, or belonged to, persons of note: a fine leather volume with lions tooled in gold for Prince Henry Stuart; a mathematical text wrapped in waste manuscript for daily use by the Renaissance scholar Duncan Liddel; a work of fiction bound in an Arts and Crafts chintz designed by William Morris.  The exhibition also presents covers that illustrate the moment in the mid-1800s when the art of bookbinding changed from being the means of customising a text for an individual into a new graphic art of book design aimed at the mass market.

Ticket Price: FREE/Drop-in/No Booking Required

Opening Hours:

Monday 22nd May – Wednesday 24th May: 9am – 5pm

Thursday 25th May – Saturday 27th May: 9am – 7pm

Sunday 28th May: 11am – 5pm

Location: The Gallery, The Sir Duncan Rice Library, Bedford Road, University of Aberdeen

Venue: The Sir Duncan Rice Library


Email festival@abdn.ac.uk
Phone +44 (0)1224 273233

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