BOOK-collecting is undeniably one of the most engaging pursuits in which a refined and artistic taste may be indulged. From the earliest times, and even before the days of printing, this pleasant diversion has been pursued by persons of moderate means as well as by those of wealth and distinction, and every succeeding generation of bookcollectors has exceeded its predecessors in numbers and in enthusiasm. The alluring influences of bibliophilism, or book-loving, have silently crept into thousands of homes, whether beautiful or humble; for the library is properly regarded as one of the most important features of home as well as mental equipment.
In The House Beautiful, William C. Gannett emphasizes the importance of considering the library as foremost in furnishing a home. He says:
“It means admission to the new marvels of science, if one chooses admission. It means an introduction to the noblest company that all the generations have produced, if we claim the introduction.
Remembering this, how can one help wishing to furnish his house with some such furniture? A poet for a table piece! A philosopher upon the shelf! Browning or Emerson for a fireside friend!
“A family’s rank in thought and taste can well be gauged by the books and papers that lie upon the shelf or table of the library.”
Henry H. Harper,’Book Lovers, Bibliomaniacs & Book Clubs’ (1904).
Imagine indeed, having ‘…. a poet for a table piece, a philosopher upon the shelf, and Browning or Emerson for a fireside friend’! What a dazzling thought.
Once again, yet another fine example of how books most definitely do furnish a room. No wonder we find it such a delight whenever there’s a chance to take a peek at a fellow book lover’s rooms or shelves. We just never know whom we might happen to meet in there. 😉