Thursday, August 9, 2007

Booking through Thursday

Although my blog content admittedly has been lacking lately, I'm afraid that I'm not doing much better today. I've seen several people doing Booking through Thursday and I haven't done any memes at all so far, so here goes.

Do you have multiple copies of any of your books?
If so, why? Absent-mindedness? You love them that much? First Editions for the shelf, but paperbacks to read?
If not, why not? Not enough space? Not enough money? Too sensible to do something so foolish?


Yes! I do have many duplicates among my books. Most of the duplicates I have because they are books that I study and often use in my research, so having different editions prepared by a variety of scholars is useful because they have different insights in their footnotes and introductions. This is why I have so many copies of Renaissance French books and the Bible (I study early religious reform—before Luther—as expressed in literature of the period). Some of the other French duplicates I have because a professor in graduate school discovered that he had different editions from the ones he had ordered for us in the campus bookstore. So, all of us poor grad students had to scrape our pennies to buy his editions of the texts so that we could all follow along in class. Thus, I have multiple copies of Balzac, Montesquieu, Voltaire…there are even a few more that I don’t mention below.

I’m sure that I have more duplicates than the ones I list. Sadly, the great majority of my books are in storage, so I’m working mainly on memory here. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we will find a new house soon so that all of my books can be restored to their proper place on shelves instead of in boxes!

The Bible: 5 copies (New Jerusalem, New Oxford Annotated, Revised Standard, a French language edition, and a leather-bound one that my granny gave me as a child)

Jeanne Flore, Les Comptes amoureux : 5 copies—this is the book I’m writing my thesis on. So, I have a microfilm copy of both the original and second editions (1540 & 1542), two modern editions and my very own English translation, which I hope to publish next year (again, keeping the fingers crossed!)

Rabelais’s Gargantua: 4 copies
Rabelais’s Pantagruel: 3 copies

Edith Wharton, The Age of Innocence: 2 copies; one movie tie-in--I hate movie tie-ins, so I had to buy another nice paperback


I love old hardback books, so these two I own in both modern paperbacks and vintage hardcover:

Galsworthy, The Forsyte Saga: 2 copies; one cheap paperback and one nice old hardcover from 1928
Marguerite de Navarre, Heptaméron:3 copies (2 French; one old English language hardcover)

  • Frances Mayes, Under the Tuscan Sun: one paperback; and one autographed & personalized paperback that I got when I met her at a public lecture a few years ago (she is so nice and thoughtful; I loved her!)

    The fault of former grad school prof (2 editions of each):
    Balzac, La Fille aux yeux d’or
    Montesquieu, Lettres persanes
    Voltaire, Lettres philosophiques
    Beaumarchais, Le Mariage de Figaro

    As for these two from childhood, I bought stray trade paperbacks of one book in each series, loved them and then had to buy a complete matching set, resulting in a couple of extras.

    C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: one stray paperback; one in complete set
    Laura Ingalls Wilder, Little House in the Big Woods: ditto

I hope to catch up on reviews this weekend!

7 comments:

Literary Feline said...

You have quite a few duplicates--and for good reason. :-) I'd completely forgotten about the various editions of the Bible we have around.

Terrie said...

I have lots of copies of the Bible too, seems to be very common. Most of mine have been inherited and have little bits of emphemera inside, such as little crosses with the psalms and my ancestor's notes on them.

Kelly said...

Literary feline-Yes, I do and it drives me batty sometimes because I can never remember which copy had that special quote that I'm looking for. So, I have to search through all of them and it's always the last one I look in that has it!

Terrie-I just love old family books with marginalia and ephemera. I like to contemplate what the original owners were thinking when they held the book and imagine their personal reading experience. What treasures you must have.

Bookgirl said...

Oh wow! The only duplicates I have are because I honestly forgot I had a copy of them and bought them again. I cull my shelves every so often so I think I got all duplicates out. I gave them to the library.

Cath said...

I have several copies of Puck of Pook's Hill by Rudyard Kipling because I love it so. Two of Frederica by Georgette Heyer because I saw a beautiful hardback in a charity shop and simply couldn't bring myself to leave it there. ;-) Two copies of The Hobbit because my daughter bought me a lovely boxed edition one Christmas. And I took a photo of some bookshelves recently and it wasn't until I stared hard at the photo that I realised I had two copies of The American Boy by Andrew Taylor. Old age is here at last - my brain is truly addled.

Kelly said...

Iliana-I wish that I had your self-discipline for giving away unneeded duplicates. Some I legitimately need, but many I just hoard because I have this urge to collect books. And I don't mean collecting in the true sense of the word, but more like amassing large quantities for no apparent reason. I say that I'm sentimentally attached to them. My husband says I'm a pack-rat. Not sure who's right! :)

Cath-I like to think that my duplicates are like yours, books that I'm attached to for some reason or another. I'm probably fooling myself in some instances...

StuckInABook said...

Some pretty worthy, academic reasons for having duplicates - well done Kelly! And some not so worthy, but just look at my list of duplicates - all indulgences. I love Booking Through Thursday - it's like a mass confessional where we can comfort each other in shared foibles...