One for the Books

I have a love of books and reading that crosses over into my vintage/antique obsession. I devour a good book. A good series of books is truly dangerous. There may not be any clean clothes or meals served until the series is done. Sad, but simply true.

Sometimes I buy old books because it’s written by a well known author. Often I buy them because the title is interesting. I also buy them because of the color of the cover. I’ve mentioned a few times before in previous posts that I will walk through the house looking for a book of a certain color to add to a holiday vignette that I am working on. There’s something about the smell of old paper that makes an old book holy regardless of the subject matter. There’s something about looking through an old encyclopedia of “modern” knowledge that makes even a young person long for the days of simplicity and ignorance of old. How little we knew. How happy we were.

Rudyard Kipling is known around the world. This copy of his works shows the once innocent swastika symbol with Kipling’s name on the inside cover. In the Hindu culture of Kipling’s beloved India, this was a symbol of good luck and fortune. Once the Nazi party later began to use it, Kipling ordered that it no longer be used in any of his books. I wonder, one day in the future will people remember that this symbol was not always one of evil and hatred? If books like this are tossed and thrown away the chances of that being known may die with it.

Not quite as well known as Rudyard Kipling, but symbolic to my home of the metro Atlanta region is poet and storyteller Sidney Lanier. The lake nearest to my home and also our source of drinking water takes the name of Sidney Lanier. Many people are probably unaware of who he even was. This copy of his poems, edited by his wife, also happens to be signed by the author. Lanier was important enough in his day to have a major body of water named after him. Lovely, isn’t it, that a man was appreciated for his artistic abilities?

Here is a gathering of old hymnals, which is quite appropriate for an antique lover living in the Bible Belt. Imagine the souls that held these hymnals week after week, who sang out and praised God, that begged for his mercy, that felt his Holy Spirit. There’s something about holding an antique church hymnal that makes me feel electrified.

And here are just a few examples of books that I’ve chosen because of their color or title alone:

The great things about collecting old books is that they are incredibly easy to find. Buy what you personally like and you will be surrounded by some of your favorite things.


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