December 21, 2012 Leave a comment
Excerpts from Glossary to Slightly Foxed — but Still Desirable: Ronald Searle’s Wicked World of Book Collecting.
Skin scraped, rubbed, or chewed by the dog of a previous owner.
What is now left of what was once a cloth binding.
Cracked (but holding)
Binding held by a thread.
Binding held by two threads.
Just about worth the money, if you must have it.
Taken apart and now it’s your problem.
Generally messy, with traces of previous owner’s breakfast.
Some pages discoloured with brown damp spots.
Simply smothered in brown damp spots.
Needs only four legs and a tail to complete.
Volume that has been used to replace the leg of a sideboard.
Distinct signs of wear, but will hold until customer is out of shop.
Smooth, dyed calfskin treated with birch-bark oil by a vodka-soaked serf.
Smooth, dyed calfskin half treated with birch-bark oil by a totally soaked serf.
Title repeated ad nauseam at the top of every page in case the purchaser should forget what he is reading.
Set, nice bright
Three or four moth-eaten but matching volumes in varying states of dilapidation.
A once well-fed animal now spread over cardboard to hold pages together.
An ancient binding that looks as if it has been served up straight from the pot.
Splashed, stained, soiled, sullied and blemished beyond belief.
Foxing, soiling, contemporary kipper stains and all character removed from the paper.