The Love of Books: The Philobiblon of Richard de Bury

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Alexander Moring, the De la More Press, 1903 - Book collecting - 141 pages

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Page 57 - The great discoverer's pleasure at the university of Paris corresponds to that of visitors to Oxford in later years. " There," he says, "are delightful libraries, more aromatic than stores of spicery ; there are luxuriant parks of all manner of volumes ; there are Academic meads shaken by the tramp of scholars ; there are lounges of Athens ; walks of the Peripatetics ; peaks of Parnassus ; and porches of the Stoics. There is seen the surveyor of all Arts and Sciences, Aristotle, to whom belongs all...
Page 71 - Admirable Minerva seems to bend her course to all the nations of the earth, and reacheth from end to end mightily, that she may reveal herself to all mankind. We see that she has already visited the Indians, the Babylonians, the Egyptians and Greeks, the Arabs and the Romans. Now she has passed by Paris, and now has happily come to Britain, the most noble of islands, nay, rather a microcosm in itself, that she may show herself a debtor both to the Greeks and to the Barbarians.
Page 94 - The truest likeness of the beatitude to come is the contemplation of the sacred writings, in which we behold in turn the Creator and the creature, and draw from streams of perpetual gladness. Faith is established by the power of books; hope is strengthened by their solace, insomuch that by patience and the consolation of scripture we are in good hope. Charity is not puffed up, but is edified by the knowledge of true learning, and, indeed, it is clearer than light that the Church is established upon...
Page 54 - In fact, the fame of our love of them had been soon winged abroad everywhere, and we were reported to burn with such desire for books, and especially old ones, that it was more easy for any man to gain our favour by means of books than of money.
Page ix - Upon the accession of his royal pupil to the throne, he was first appointed cofferer, then treasurer of the wardrobe, archdeacon of Northampton, prebendary of Lincoln, Sarum, and Lichfield, keeper of the privy seal, dean of Wales, and, last of all, bishop of Durham.
Page 26 - O marvellous virtue of an empiric verse ! O saving antidote of dreadful ruin ! O precious reading of the psalter, which for this alone deserves to be called the book of life ! Let the laity undergo the judgment of the secular arm, that either sewn up in sacks they may be carried out to Neptune, or planted in the earth may fructify for Pluto, or may be offered amid the flames as a fattened holocaust to Vulcan, or at least may be hung up as a victim to Juno...
Page 8 - ... or perhaps have fed swine with the prodigal son. Where, then, most potent, most longed-for treasure, art thou concealed? and where shall the thirsty soul find thee? Undoubtedly, indeed, thou hast placed thy desirable tabernacle in books, where...
Page 12 - Ye are the golden pots in which manna is stored, and rocks flowing with honey, nay, combs of honey, most plenteous udders of the milk of life, garners ever full ; ye are the tree of life and the fourfold river of Paradise, by which the human mind is nourished, and the thirsty intellect is watered and refreshed.
Page 43 - ... people commonly report, whom having professed, you do not instruct in doctrines by compulsion and fear as their age requires, but maintain them to go upon beggarly excursions, and suffer them to consume the time in which they might learn, in catching at the favours of their friends, to the offence of their parents, the danger of the boys, and the detriment of the Order.
Page 11 - How safely we lay bare the poverty of human ignorance to books without feeling any shame ! They are masters who instruct us without rod or ferule, without angry words, without clothes or money. If you come to them they are not asleep ; if you ask and inquire of them they do not withdraw themselves ; they do not chide if you make mistakes ; they do not laugh at you if you are ignorant. O books, who alone are liberal and free, who give to all who ask of you and enfranchise all who serve you faithfully...

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