9 July 2018

The Bibliographical Group's next programme of lectures will begin on Tuesday 16th October at 6:30p.m., when Dr. Nicolas
Bell, Librarian of Trinity College, Cambridge, will speak on The Welsh Martial: A Bibliographical Excursion with John Owen.  Any enquiries should be addressed to the Secretary, Timothy Cutts, at the National Library.


1 May 2018

Aberystwyth Bibliographical Group would like to thank the Oxford Bibliographical Society for a grant of £350 towards the costs of running the Gregynog Symposium in 2017.

23 March 2018

The Aberystwyth Bibliographical Group held its A.G.M. in the National Library on Tuesday 20th March. Dr. Lionel Madden stood down at the meeting after twelve years as Chairman, and Dr. David Stoker was elected as his successor. As a token of the Group’s thanks, an extract was presented to Dr. Madden from The Misfortunes of Elphin by Thomas Love Peacock, specially printed for the occasion by Huw Ceiriog Jones, a member of the Group’s committee, at Gwasg Nant y Mynydd. Flowers were presented to Mrs. Madden.

The speaker for the evening was Bill Hines, formerly Assistant Director for Information Services at the University of Wales Aberystwyth. In a sequel to a talk given to the Group in 2015, he spoke on Politicians, Princes and Prelates: More Rambles around the Hugh Owen Library Stacks. The illustrated lecture was the result of the speaker’s continuing research into the provenance of rare books in the University Library, focusing in particular on politicians, royalty and churchmen. These ranged from a 1572 Bible with the binding stamp of Anne of Denmark, Electress of Saxony, to a volume with the bookplate of William Wilberforce.After the meeting, the Group entertained Dr. and Mrs. Madden to dinner at Medina in Market Street. 

The next event will be a visit to the Old Stile Press in Monmouthshire in early June.


20 February 2018

THE Octagon at St Paul’s Methodist Centre was filled almost to capacity for the Bibliographical Group meeting on Saturday, 17 February. The speaker was Prof Bill Bell, who is Professor of Bibliography at Cardiff University.. His illustrated lecture entitled ‘What did Tommy Read?’, based on the findings of Prof Bell’s forthcoming monograph, explored the reading habits of troops on the Western Front in the First World War. There is a great deal of evidence for the range of literacies and tastes among British troops at the time as well as a number of uses to which the printed word was put. The supplies from home were not always suited to Tommy’s taste, and were not always received in predictable ways. As the War progressed, the authorities at home attempted to accommodate the needs
of soldiers as they came to recognise that provision of reading matter was essential to troop morale. All the same, effects did not always live up to expectations.

The meeting was preceded by coffee at St Paul’s. Following a lively discussion after the lecture, the group entertained the speaker to lunch at the Pier Brasserie.The next meeting will be the AGM in the National Library on Tuesday, 20 March, at 6.30pm, after which Bill Hines will speak on ‘Politicians, Princes and Prelates: More Rambles’ around the Hugh Owen Library Stacks.


28 November 2017

THE Bibliographical Group met at St Paul’s Methodist Centre on Tuesday, 21 November, when the speaker was Dr David Stoker, a former lecturer in the Department of Information Studies at Aberystwyth and a member of the group’s committee.The title of his lecture was The Cheap Repository Tracts in Britain, Ireland and America, 1795-1830.The Cheap Repository Tracts scheme was instigated in 1795 by Hannah More to counteract the influence of popular street literature then circulating, and especially the growing influence of Thomas Paine.The lecture was accompanied by a PowerPoint presentation showing images of many of the tracts and their striking woodcut illustrations.Dr Stoker also brought a selection of the tracts from his own collection for the audience to look at afterwards. Members then entertained the speaker to dinner at the Marine Hotel.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday, 16 January, in the National Library, when Prof Matthew Jarvis will speak on English-Language Poetry and the London Welshman Magazine, 1959-1970.


28 October 2017

THE Aberystwyth Bibliographical Group began its programme for 2017-18 with a meeting at St Paul’s Methodist Centre on Tuesday, 24 October.After some initial technical problems had been solved, members enjoyed an illustrated lecture on Provenance revisited by Dr David Pearson, former director of culture, heritage and libraries at the City of London Corporation.The speaker’s book Provenance Research in Book History was first published nearly 25 years ago, and he has been working on a revised edition which is due to be published next year.Dr Pearson spoke about the various types of provenance information found in books: marginal annotations, manuscript notes on endpapers, bookplates, personalised book bindings.Opinions were divided in the audience as to whether one should annotate one’s own books, but it was generally agreed that historical annotations in books are valuable for research and should be recorded.Libraries have been recording provenance information in their catalogues for decades, and much progress has been made in the past 25 years, thanks in part to technical advances, but much remains to be done.After the meeting, members entertained the speaker to dinner at Medina in Market Street.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday, 21 November, when Dr David Stoker will speak on The Cheap Repository Tracts in Britain, Ireland and America, 1795-1830.