CATALOGUE OF SHIPWRECKED BOOKSEDWARD WILSON-LEE Book Number: 89772 Product format: Hardback
An innovative work of history which tells the extraordinary story of Christopher Columbus's illegitimate son, Hernando Colón, a singular visionary of the printing-press age. At the peak of the Age of Exploration, Hernando travelled with Columbus on his final voyage to the New World, a journey that ended in disaster, bloody mutiny, and shipwreck. After Columbus's death in 1506, 18 year old Hernando sought to continue and surpass his father's campaign to explore the boundaries of the known world by building a library that would collect everything ever printed. It would become a vast holding organised by summaries and catalogues, the first ever search engine for the exploding diversity of written matter as the printing press proliferated across Europe. Hernando restlessly and obsessively amassed his collection based on the ground-breaking conviction that a library of universal knowledge should even include material often dismissed as ephemeral trash - ballads, erotica, newsletters, popular images, romances and fables. The loss of part of his collection to another maritime disaster in 1522, documented in his poignant Catalogue of Shipwrecked Books, sets off the final scramble to complete this sublime project, a vision of near-impossible perfection. The Cambridge Renaissance scholar's biography of Hernando is testimony to the beautiful madness of booklovers, a plunge into 16th century Europe's information revolution, and a reflection of the passions and intrigues that lie beneath our own attempts to bring order to the world today. A great library originates in a bold adventure, as all of us bibliophiles know. We begin with the Prologue, Seville 12th July 1539. There are maps and extensive Notes. Well illustrated including eight pages of colour plates. Remainder mark, 401pp.
Published price: £25
Bibliophile price: £8.00