Rare Books

The Redwood is home to an outstanding collection of rare books and manuscripts. Of these, a Bible printed in Venice in 1488 by Giorgio Arrivabene is one of the earliest instances of an incunable owned by an American library and has the distinction of being the incunable held the longest by a library in this country. There are exquisite illuminated books, including a French book of hours from 1517 and a 15th-century "Hours of the Virgin" on vellum.

 

Among the first editions and other precious literary artifacts secured in the vault include the 1791 unexpurgated first edition of James Boswell's "Life of Samuel Johnson", an early manuscript in Italian of the travels of Christoph Simon de Haijdorf, a splendid edition of Livy's "Historia Romanae Decades" printed in 1482, Matthias Lock's books of engravings from the Cary Collection, and a large collection of works related to Newport.

 Christoph Simon de Haijdorf

 

Matthias Lock

 

 

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