It is estimated that during the peak of the Great Purge in the USSR some 680,000 to 1,200,000 people were killed by NKVD. An average investigator in Moscow had some 30-40 political cases per month. And sometimes they were bored.
Part of an extensive collection of manuscripts, unearthed in the Russian city of Novgorod more than five years ago, these childish writings were produced by an old practice of writing on birch bark.
This vintage Russian magazine about printing was published for only two years, but it already gave me a lot of insights into the epoch — this time we share the first volume that was published in November 1901.
What's a genizah? In Judaism, it is forbidden to throw away writings containing the name of God. Special repositories, genizot, were designated to store these texts prior to proper cemetery burial. The word גניזה itself means "storage"
There was something that attracted my attention in this book besides the subject. So, let me tell you about my recent find: this pamphlet about the history of the book written by a Russian literary scientist and bibliognost Vladimir Bush.
Reading old trade magazines is always the right way to get knowledge and inspiration. Like with this 1911 issue of the Dutch Printer's Yearbook, where I found mentions of "starch marbling." This issue of the Russian magazine Art of Print isn't an exception.
At the end of this July, the river Iya in the Russian region of Irkutsk Oblast has risen by 14 meters (46 feet). Other rivers of the Angara river basin have risen as well, killing 25 and displacing thousands of people.
I've been browsing through a collection of more than a century old Russian magazines Printing Art. I found some interesting statistics concerning the book industry of the early 20th century in Russia. And this curiosity as well.
From time to time, iBookBinding shares links or posts things that are written not in English but some other languages. Sometimes we advise using an automatic translation. In other cases, the visual component is interesting enough.
Last week an exhibition of incunables opened at the Russian State Library in Moscow. There are many notable objects shown there, but arguably the jewel of the show is one of the few remaining Gutenberg Bibles printed on vellum.
During my stay in Romania this January I’ve started to make a short video about the first Romanian printed book. It is pretty hard to find any illustrations or photos that are allowed to be used in a blog post (due to copyright limitations and stuff). That’s why I’ve decided to check some alternative sources. I visited a couple of state-owned stamp dealers in Bucharest and was lucky to buy one of the stamps dedicated to the 500th anniversary of the first printed book. Continue reading →