Cecil Court, London WC2N

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Cecil Court 1894


ABA Summer Exhibition

Make a date in August to visit the ABA Summer Exhibition on Women & the Book. This event won’t be taking place in Cecil Court itself (although it will be held nearby at Bernard Quaritch Ltd, close to Piccadilly Circus) but many of the booksellers in Cecil Court are members of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association and will be exhibiting some of their material. More details can be found at www.abasummer.com. The exhibition will include books and related items by, for or about women and printed, illustrated or bound by women, from the fifteenth century until the present day: from an example of Dame Juliana Berners’ Boke of St Albans printed by Caxton’s successor Wynkn de Worde at Westminster in 1496 to a proof copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone signed by J.K. Rowling. The exhibition has the support of the Women’s Library and highlights will include autograph letters by George Eliot and Beatrix Potter, a copy of Mary Wollstoncraft’s Vindication of the Rights of Women and a first edition of Mary Wollstoncraft Shelley’s futuristic disaster novel The Last Man, a first edition of Pride and Prejudice which belonged to the wife of Spencer Percival (the assassinated P.M.), a presentation copy of Florence Nightingale’s Notes on Hospitals, some of Dorothy L. Sayers’ advertising copy from the 1920s and a fascinating album of anti-slavery and early women’s rights material compiled over a lifetime by Anne Thompson, wife of the well-known abolitionist George Thompson. The aim is to raise awareness of this particular topic and of the rare book trade in general, and of course visitors will be able to purchase the exhibits as well as the exhibition catalogue!