New Exhibition Now Open: “Fearsome Ink”

Part of the exhibition, "Fearsome Ink: The English Gothic Novel to 1830," on view through Mat 28.

A portion of the exhibition, “Fearsome Ink: The English Gothic Novel to 1830,” on view through May 28.

Some readers will know that the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library possesses what is considered the world’s finest collection of English Gothic novels. From approximately 1765 to 1830 English readers eagerly embraced a new genre of “Gothic” fiction: typically set in medieval times, imbued with Gothic sensibilities, and frequently invoking the supernatural, its passionate and vividly delineated characters endured untold horrors of the imagination and scourges of the flesh. Ever since, this profusion of what one might term “fearsome ink” has profoundly influenced the world’s literary and popular culture.

A Gothic precursor and Shakespeare source: Matteo Bandello's tale of the ill-fated lovers of Verona, Romeo and Juliet, in French translation. Matteo Bandello, Histoires tragiques. Paris: Gilles Robinot, 1559. (Gordon 1559 .B3)

A Gothic precursor and Shakespeare source: Matteo Bandello’s tale of the ill-fated lovers of Verona, Romeo and Juliet, in French translation. Matteo Bandello, Histoires tragiques. Paris: Gilles Robinot, 1559. (Gordon 1559 .B3)

The nucleus of U.Va.’s collection was formed by British bibliographer Michael Sadleir and enlarged by U.Va. graduate student Robert K. Black, who donated the Sadleir-Black Collection of Gothic Fiction to U.Va. in 1942. Since then the collection has grown steadily through purchase and gift. In 2012 the French scholar Maurice Lévy—who five decades earlier had mined the Sadleir-Black Collection for his dissertation—generously gave to U.Va. a superb collection of Gothic fiction in French translation: the Maurice Lévy Collection of French Gothic. Highlights from these two collections are now on view in the exhibition “Fearsome Ink: the English Gothic Novel to 1830.”

Oh, the horror! A hand-colored, engraved frontispiece to an early 19th-century "shilling shocker," or chapbook adaptation of a Gothic novel.

Oh, the horror! A hand-colored, engraved frontispiece to an early 19th-century “shilling shocker,” or chapbook adaptation of a Gothic novel.

“Fearsome Ink” explores the English Gothic novel as a publishing phenomenon as well as a literary genre. It seeks to situate the English Gothic novel in international context; probe its potential for research in such areas as literary history, the history of publishing and reading, and book illustration; and profile the collectors responsible for building U.Va.’s magisterial holdings. Highlights include 16th– and 17th-century precursors of Gothic literature; contemporary German “shudder novels”; French translations of English Gothic novels; early American attempts to write Gothic fiction suited to American audiences; parodies of Gothic fiction; strikingly illustrated popular chapbook versions of Gothic novels; copies owned (and presumably read) by “persons of quality”; and battered circulating library copies read by the majority of contemporary readers.

Original manuscript contract, signed by Ann Radcliffe, for her bestselling the Mysteries of Udolpho (London: G.G. and J. Robinson, 1794). Radcliffe's novel commanded the princely sum of 500 British pounds from publisher George Robinson. (MSS 1625)

Original manuscript contract, signed by Ann Radcliffe, for her bestselling novel, The Mysteries of Udolpho (London: G.G. and J. Robinson, 1794). Radcliffe’s novel commanded the princely sum of 500 British pounds from publisher George Robinson. (MSS 1625)

On March 25-26, U.Va.’s Department of French is sponsoring a related conference, “The Dark Thread: From histoires tragiques to Gothic Tales.”

G5“Fearsome Ink” will remain on view through May 28 in the first floor gallery of the Small Special Collections Library.

This Just In: Summer Beach Reading, Part II

Some of our summer beach reading: 19th-century American fiction newly added to the Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature

Some of our summer beach reading: 19th-century American fiction newly added to the Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature

You may have noticed that “This Just In” took a brief summer hiatus. Yes, it’s true: we were vacationing at the beach, reading!  Catching up, not with the latest Dan Brown thriller, but with an influx of 19th-century American fiction to the Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature. It is unlikely that any of these works ever made the best-seller list, but we recommend them to you nonetheless, for they significantly enrich the Barrett Library’s holdings in interesting ways.

Nathaniel Hawthorne, Septimius: a romance. London: Henry S. King & Co., 1872. (PS1872 .S4 1872d)

Nathaniel Hawthorne, Septimius: a romance. London: Henry S. King & Co., 1872. (PS1872 .S4 1872d)

The Barrett Library is so comprehensive for major American authors that it is hard to believe that it lacked a Nathaniel Hawthorne first edition! But only this spring did we obtain the true first edition of Septimius: a romance. Left unfinished at Hawthorne’s death, Septimius was prepared for publication by his daughter Una with assistance from Robert Browning. The first edition appeared in London in 1872, with the first American edition, retitled  Septimius Felton: the elixir of life, following two months later. Initially well received, Septimius was soon deemed a “failure” by critics, though there are signs of renewed scholarly interest in Hawthorne’s “romance of immortality.”

Catherine Eaves, How I twice eloped: an Indiana idyll. Chicago: Oak Print. and Pub. Co., 1901. (PS1567 .E36 H6 1901)

Catherine Eaves, How I twice eloped: an Indiana idyll. Chicago: Oak Printing and Publishing Co., 1901. (PS1567 .E36 H6 1901)

Did you know that Abraham Lincoln authored a short novel? Neither did we, until we encountered at a small book fair a copy in original illustrated wrappers of How I twice eloped: an Indiana idyll, billed as “the only novelette ever sketched by Abraham Lincoln.” Actually, a closer perusal reveals a sort of Lincolnesque tall tale, as Lincoln’s agency in this work was scant indeed. How I twice eloped was penned, we are told, by Catherine Eaves, a member of the Lincoln Literary Society in Hoosier Heights, Indiana, a stone’s throw from Lincoln’s boyhood home near the banks of the Ohio River. (Or perhaps the true author was the copyright holder, Albert Alberg.) Taking her cue from an anecdote (related in Ida Tarbell’s recently published Life of Abraham Lincoln) that Lincoln reputedly told about his youth in Indiana, Eaves “elaborated” it into a short novel. How I twice eloped is one of many fascinating works of regional American fiction to be found in the Barrett Library.

Lois Waisbrooker, Nothing like it, or, steps to the kingdom. New York: Murray Hill Publishing Co., 1885. (PS3129 .W38 N68 1885)

Lois Waisbrooker, Nothing like it: or, steps to the kingdom. New York: Murray Hill Publishing Co., 1885. (PS3129 .W38 N68 1885)

As the 19th century progressed, women’s issues loomed ever larger in American literature. Lois Waisbrooker was one of many who sought to advance the cause of women’s rights through didactic fiction. Born Adeline Eliza Nichols, Waisbrooker adopted a new name and a feminist outlook following a forced marriage. Her career as a radical reformer led her from spiritualism to anarchism, but it was as an advocate of women’s rights and sexual freedom that she was best known. Nothing like it: or, steps to the kingdom, first published in 1875, takes free love, public morals, and the true meaning of marriage as its ambitious subject. The Barrett Library still lacks the first edition, but we have acquired the second edition, published in New York in 1885 by the Murray Hill Publishing Co.—the publishing arm of free speech and birth control advocate Edward Bliss Foote.

Henri Gordon, Alva Vine, or, art versus duty. New York: American News Co., 1880. (PS1757 .G42 A7 1880)

Henri Gordon, Alva Vine, or, art versus duty. New York: American News Co., 1880. (PS1757 .G42 A7 1880)

The changing role of women is addressed from a different perspective by Henri Gordon in Alva Vine; or, art versus duty, published in 1880. Noting that “one class now rapidly developing in the United States” is that of the career woman, Gordon tells the fictional story of opera singer Alva Vine, who “thinks and acts for herself as an individual endeavoring to do right and follow the dictation of the spirit given her for self direction, without regard to prejudices or received ideas of the exact boundaries of woman’s sphere, or the right she has to be a self-poised untrammeled, helpful woman, being bound only by a sense of duty and good judgment.” The novel is also interesting for its two “Artotype” illustrations, which are unrelated to the text. These probably were inserted at the request and expense of the Artotype patent holder in order to advertise this new photomechanical process. In any case, this is a very early use of Artotype for book illustration.

James Daly, The little blind god on rails: a romaunt of the Gold Northwest. Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co., 1888. (PS1499 .D87 L5 1888)

James Daly, The little blind god on rails: a romaunt of the Gold Northwest. Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co., 1888. (PS1499 .D87 L5 1888)

Another unusual late 19th-century example of “product placement” in American fiction is The little blind god on rails: a romaunt of the Gold Northwest, published in Chicago in 1888. This large-format work, authored by “James Daly” (pseudonym of Frank S. Gray) and profusely illustrated by True Williams (who earlier had illustrated Tom Sawyer), was written to promote leisure travel to the American northwest on board the Chicago & North-Western Railway. Train travel is the true hero of this tale, whose human characters, when not enjoying the sights or pursuing the “little blind god” (i.e. Love), extol the comfort and convenience of riding the rails.

J. McHenry Jones, Hearts of gold: a novel. Wheeling [W.Va.]: Daily Intelligencer Steam Job Press, 1896. (PS2151 .J28 H43 1896)

J. McHenry Jones, Hearts of gold: a novel. Wheeling [W.Va.]: Daily Intelligencer Steam Job Press, 1896. (PS2151 .J28 H43 1896)

The Barrett Library has also acquired a fine copy of Hearts of gold, the only novel published by J. McHenry Jones. An African American born in Gallipolis, Ohio, in 1859, Jones distinguished himself academically before moving to West Virginia in 1882. There he became a leader in the African American community, serving as a school principal and president of what is now West Virginia State University, a prominent member of fraternal organizations, a Republican Party stalwart, and newspaper editor. Jones opens Hearts of gold, published in 1896, in an idealized African American settlement north of the Mason-Dixon line. Its protagonists then move southward to attend a fraternal gathering, only to fall prey to the new forms of racial injustice being instituted by whites in the post-Civil War South.

Faddei Bulgarin, Ivan Vejeeghen, or, life in Russia. Philadelphia: Carey and Lea, 1832. (PG3321 .B8 I815 1832)

Faddeĭ Bulgarin, Ivan Vejeeghen, or, life in Russia. Philadelphia: Carey and Lea, 1832. (PG3321 .B8 I815 1832)

Thanks in part to the enterprise of British publishers—and to the absence of international copyright agreements—19th-century American readers also had access to a surprisingly broad range of foreign literature in translation. In 1832, for instance, the Philadelphia firm of Carey and Lea—then the American publisher of James Fenimore Cooper’s best-selling novels—offered to their readers what may be the earliest work of Russian fiction to be translated into English, and the first to be published in the United States: Faddeĭ Bulgarin’s Ivan Vejeeghen; or, life in Russia. Set in early 19th-century Russia, Ivan Vejeeghen is less the story of its rather bland hero than a lively panorama of contemporary Russian society.  Bulgarin’s novel proved popular in Europe following publication in 1829, and an English translation by George Ross followed two years later. Carey and Lea promptly reprinted Ross’s translation, presumably without permission or royalty payment, but it is unlikely that they profited much from this speculation.

This Just In: A Peek Inside the Maurice Lévy Collection of French Gothic

In a previous post Nicole Bouché, Director of the Small Special Collections Library, related the story of how the Maurice Lévy Collection of French Gothic arrived at its permanent home under Grounds.  Thanks to the magnificent gift of the Sadleir-Black Collection of Gothic Novels received in 1942, U.Va. has world-renowned holdings in the English Gothic novel, now wonderfully augmented by the Lévy Collection.  Here is a brief peek at a few of its riches.

A shelf of Ann Radcliffe in French translation.

At the core of the Lévy Collection are its many contemporary French translations of English Gothic novels.  Here, for instance, is a listing of the Ann Radcliffe works to be found in the Lévy Collection:

  • Les châteaux d’Athlin et de Dunbayne. Paris: Testu, 1797.
  • Le couvent de Sainte Catherine, ou les moeurs du XIII° Siècle. Paris: Renard,1810.
  • Eléonore de Rosalba, ou le confessionnal des pénitens noirs. Paris: Lepetit, 1797.
  • La forêt, ou l’Abbaye de Saint-Clair. Paris: Denne, 1796.
  • La forêt, ou l’Abbaye de Saint-Clair. Paris: Maradan, 1798.
  • La forêt, ou l’Abbaye de Saint-Clair. Paris: Lévy, 1880.
  • L’italien, ou le confessionnal des pénitens noirs. Paris: Maradan, 1798.
  • L’italien, ou le confessionnal des pénitents noirs. Paris: Lévy, 1873.
  • Julia, ou les souterrains de Mazzini. Paris: Maradan, 1798.
  • Julia, ou les souterrains du château de Mazzini. Paris: Lévy, 1897.
  • Les mystères du château d’Udolphe. Paris: Lévy, 1874.
  • Le tombeau. Paris: Lerouge, 1812.
  • Les visions du château des Pyrénées. Paris: Lévy, 1896.

Le moine, comédie en cinq actes (Paris, an VI [1797/98])

The Gothic novel proved so popular with readers that it quickly penetrated popular culture in both England and France, attracting a wider audience.  Consider, for example, Matthew Gregory Lewis’s novel, The Monk.  It created a sensation when first published in London in 1796. The following year it was translated into French and published in Paris as Le moine, and the Lévy Collection contains a copy of the first French edition. In December of 1797 Lewis’s novel was adapted for the Paris stage, in true French fashion, as a “comédie en cinq actes, mélée de chants, danses, pantomime.” The Lévy Collection includes a fine copy of the rare printed text, which contains a cast list for the  premiere performance at the Théâtre de l’Émulation, together with, intriguingly, “des changemens et un nouveau denouement.” (Please, not a happy ending!)

Matthew Gregory Lewis, Le moine (Paris, 1797)

Reversed positions: Matthew Gregory Lewis, Le moine (Paris, an VI [1797/98])

As Nicole Bouché has noted, Maurice Lévy was fascinated by the illustrations found in French Gothic novels, and in 1973 he published a book on the subject, Images du roman noir.  Illustrations may reveal unexpected things about a publication.  For example, the first French translation of The Monk (Paris, 1797) includes an etched frontispiece depicting one of the novel’s most dramatic moments.  The translation sold so well that the same publisher issued a new edition later that same year.  But in that edition’s frontispiece, the characters switch positions.  It is likely that the publisher, not anticipating the need for a second edition, neglected to save the copperplate and therefore had to commission a new plate of the same image.  In copying the original frontispiece (which printed in reverse orientation from the design as etched on the copperplate), the etcher necessarily reversed the image!

The castles of Montreuil & Barre (London, [ca. 1820])

For those English readers who could not afford the cost of a multi-volume novel, publishers offered Gothic fiction in shorter, less expensive form.  The castles of Montreuil & Barre was first serialized in The Lady’s Magazine during 1797-1798, then printed in chapbook form (“price sixpence”) with a lurid hand-colored frontispiece to attract purchasers. Special Collections already possesses two early chapbook editions of this work, courtesy of the Sadleir-Black Collection, and the Lévy Collection contributes a third, published by W. Mason and dating to ca. 1820. This copy is in its original blue paper wrappers, which feature on the inside a list of the various chapbooks available at “Mason’s Pamphlet Warehouse” on Clerkenwell Green.

Because many of the Lévy volumes are two centuries old, they display interesting evidence of ownership and use by multiple generations of readers and collectors.  Two works in the Lévy collection, for instance, bear the booklabel of noted artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901).  It is shown here (above Maurice Lévy’s booklabel), pasted into a copy of the intriguingly titled Miss Glamour, ou les hommes dangereux (Paris, an IX [1800/01]).  Styled on the title-page as a ‘free translation from the English’ by Théodore-Pierre Bertin, the original English novel has yet to be positively identified. Perhaps Bertin, who self-published this very rare edition, was actually its author?

Emanuella, ou la découverte premature (Paris, an IX [1800/01]) is a French translation of Eliza Haywood’s The rash resolve, or the untimely discovery. First published in 1724, decades before the heyday of the Gothic novel in England, its plot nonetheless contains some Gothic elements, and it is interesting to see it revived at this time for the French market. Also interesting is the provenance: this copy bears the booklabels of (at top) prolific author Paul Lacroix (“Bibliophile Jacob,” 1806-1884) and (at bottom) the founder of Surrealism, André Breton (1896-1966).  Fittingly, Breton’s arresting booklabel was designed by Salvador Dalí.

This Just In: The Maurice Lévy Collection of French Gothic

This week Nicole Bouché, Director of Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, relates the story of how a major new acquisition came to U.Va.:

Maurice Lévy in his Toulouse study, seated before the glass-front bookcase containing his French Gothic collection.

“I have now reached a time in life where one inevitably ponders over the fate of the books one may have had the good fortune to collect over the years.”  —Maurice Lévy

Serendipity often plays a role in building great library collections, and a chance encounter between an institution and a scholar can yield an extraordinary and wholly unanticipated legacy years, sometimes decades, later.  Such is the story of the Maurice Lévy Collection of French Gothic, a recent bequest of over 450 rare books now housed in the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library.

Sometime in the early 1960s, Maurice Lévy (1929-2012), then a graduate student of English Literature at the Sorbonne in Paris, proposed to write his dissertation on the American writer, William Faulkner.  “Ah, but we don’t write dissertations on living authors” was the (predictable) reply from the French academy.

Instead, the young scholar was assigned to write about English gothic literature. With the help of a summer fellowship Lévy found his way to U.Va., where he spent three months immersed in an intensive study of the Sadleir-Black Collection of Gothic Fiction, among the world’s finest collections on the gothic genre. Lévy’s dissertation, Le Roman “Gothique” Anglais, 1764-1824, became a standard source and helped to revive scholarly interest in the field, and Lévy became a recognized authority on the gothic genre. Maurice’s final work, a scholarly edition of Matthew Gregory Lewis’ classic gothic tale, The Monk, was published posthumously in 2012.

Maurice Lévy’s doctoral dissertation, based in part on research done with U.Va.’s Sadleir-Black Collection of Gothic Fiction.

At the end of his fellowship, Lévy returned to France, never to return to Charlottesville, but with fond memories of his summer on Grounds. By his own account, he was never again in contact with the U.Va. Library, or with the Rare Book Department staff that had been so welcoming and helpful during his stay.

Jump forward several decades:  Lévy, now an emeritus professor of the Université de Toulouse, “pondered” what do with the treasured collection of French editions of gothic novels that he had painstakingly assembled.  An American colleague recalled how Maurice frequently spoke with deep appreciation of his summer spent in Charlottesville. Might U.Va. be a possibility?  And thus, in the fall of 2009, an e-mail arrived in Special Collections from an “unknown” French scholar, inquiring whether the library might perhaps be interested in acquiring his collection.

most of them first or early editions: about 60 titles, representing something like 200-250 volumes …. which compose, literally speaking, the French side of the same literary movement and could perhaps be considered by future researchers as a helpful complement, however modest and limited in size, of the prestigious Sadleir-Black collection.

I am currently looking for a home for this collection, which, although relatively modest in size when compared to others, has the advantage of illustrating the extraordinary vogue of the “roman noir” during the French Revolutionary period, and of including volumes which offer the distinctive feature (not shared by corresponding English volumes) of being individually illustrated with frontispieces by (most of them) reputed engravers. To pay homage to their talent, I published Images de Roman Noir in 1973 [Paris, Losfeld].

Should you be interested in this donation, I would take the necessary legal steps to ensure that they eventually come into your possession after my demise, so that they may be made available to future students.

If, on the occasion of a visit to France, you wished to inspect the books, you would be very welcome to do so.

Lévy’s letter included a detailed title list. We were instantly intrigued, and our interest was quickly echoed by members of the English and French faculty. Whatever the likely costs (not to mention bureaucratic hassles) associated with shipping a large antiquarian book collection from overseas, this offer clearly merited serious consideration.  A site visit was definitely in order.  Happily, I had already planned a visit to France; a detour to spend a few days in Toulouse with Professor Lévy and his wife, Ellen (an American) was easily added to the schedule.  Professor Lévy would meet me at the train station in Toulouse, where I would recognize him by the sign (“GOTHIC”) that he would be carrying.

As we conversed on our first evening together at the Lévy home, warm memories of Charlottesville, surrounded by the riches of the Sadleir-Black Collection and the gracious hospitality of then Rare Book Librarian John Cook Wyllie and his colleagues, were still vivid in Maurice’s mind.  It took very little time to confirm our interest in accepting the Lévy collection. And so we spent two enjoyable days reviewing and inventorying a seemingly endless stream of compact little volumes from the late 18th and early 19th century, almost all in their original, often quite striking French bindings.

“Oh, the horror!” groan the sagging shelves of Maurice Lévy’s bookcase.

The large, glass fronted, wooden book cabinet in which they were stored occupied an entire wall of his study. It was tightly packed two, sometimes three, rows deep, and its thick wooden shelves were so full that they bowed at the center, giving the impression that the entire bookcase was weighed down by the burden of keeping these precious volumes safe from harm.

Maurice removed each work as though he were encountering an old friend. He would pause for a moment to recall the circumstances of their first acquaintance: when, from whom, and where had he acquired the title? What drew them together, and what special significance justified the volume’s retention and inclusion in the “special” bookcase?  After a moment’s quiet reflection, Maurice would “introduce” the book to me, and we would add it to our growing list of titles destined for Virginia.

As our work progressed, it became clear that Maurice’s collection of French gothic accounted for only a small portion of the overtaxed bookcase’s contents. The remaining titles, he explained, were not his “French gothic collection” and would no doubt eventually find a home in France.  There was neither time (nor encouragement) to explore these volumes: Maurice, after all, was still consulting his library for ongoing research.

I devoted a return visit in 2011 to assessing Maurice’s extensive reference library on the gothic. No further reference was made to the other, intriguing “old” volumes, which remained undisturbed in the bookcase. However, Maurice had decided that it was nearly time to see the French gothics safely installed at U.Va.  We therefore said our good-byes with the understanding that I would return the following summer to oversee packing and shipment. Tragically, Maurice did not live to see the final transfer of his collection to U.Va.  He succumbed to a long illness only weeks before my return to Toulouse in the summer of 2012. It remained for his widow, Ellen, his children, and the U.Va. Library to follow through on the terms of Maurice’s bequest.

But there was a new twist.  Shortly before his death, as Maurice still had not arranged for the disposition of the remaining rare books in the old bookcase, his wife Ellen asked him about them. What should she do with them? “Offer them first to Virginia,” was his reply.  And so she did. It was an interesting prospect, but just what books were they? Ellen could tell me little, occupied as she was with other family and personal matters. And so I arrived in Toulouse late last July to arrange for the final packing and shipment of the ca. 250 volumes in the Lévy French gothic collection, and to ascertain which, if any, of the remaining books might be of interest to the U.Va. Library.

What I encountered was a revelation and delight!  As I made my way systematically through the bookcase, a pattern slowly but unmistakably emerged.  This was not a miscellaneous assortment of old books, but a complementary collection of rare (some extremely rare) and early works of gothic literature, many in  English, augmented by various 18th-and 19th-century source materials used and cited in Maurice’s scholarly writings.  The supplementary material included such works as Edmund Burke’s A Philosophical Inquiry into the Origin of Our Idea of the Sublime and the Beautiful (London, 1801), and Edward Mangin’s An Essay on Light Reading, as it May be Supposed to Influence Moral Conduct and Literary Taste (London, 1808). Maurice’s copy of the Dictionnaire royal françois-anglois, et anglois-françois (London, 1773) would have been an invaluable resource for study of translations, and then there was L’Art de former les jardins modernes; ou l’art des jardins anglois (Paris, 1771). What gothic novel doesn’t have a garden as a significant “setting”!

We were delighted by the new discoveries, and the possibilities that this expanded universe of resources would offer to students of gothic and related themes. It was quickly decided that virtually the entire contents of the bookcase would be packed and shipped to Charlottesville.  In due course, and with only the usual customs and other delays, the collection arrived last fall at the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, where it now waits patiently in the cataloging queue.

Special Collections staff unload the Maurice Lévy French Gothic collection, October 9, 2012.

The Lévy family, for their part, was delighted and relieved to see Maurice’s treasured “rare book cabinet” transferred virtually intact to its new and permanent home at U. Va., where it will be consulted by future generations of students and scholars of the “gothic,” and serve as a permanent tribute to Maurice’s life and career as a scholar, teacher, and mentor.  Nothing, they felt, would have pleased Maurice more. And like many other collections “under Grounds,” the Lévy collection also serves as an instructive reminder of how great library collections may be built, to a significant degree, by the cumulative legacies of chance encounters.

(A future posting will feature more highlights from the Lévy collection.)

The Maurice Lévy French Gothic collection as it looks today, under Grounds.