The Numismatic Bibliomania Society

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Welcome to The E-Sylum: Volume 4, Number 51, December 16, 2001:
an electronic publication of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.
Copyright (c) 2001, The Numismatic Bibliomania Society.


  We have one new subscriber this week:  Gary Wolfe.
  Welcome aboard!  Our subscriber count is now  414.


  Peter Gaspar writes: "Please post a great big public thank
  you to Tom Sheehan for graciously accepting requests to
  obtain and send copies of "Numismatics in the Age of Grolier,"
  the catalog for the great Grolier Club exhibit which was
  scheduled in New York for 11 September (yes) to
  November 24.

  The concise essays that accompany the descriptions of
  each case in the exhibition are excellent and evocative even
  without illustrations, and the select bibliography is of
  considerable value to bibliophiles.  The curators of the exhibit,
  John Cunnally, Jonathan Kagan, and Stephen Scher obviously
  did a great job.

  This fine catalog made me regret having not been there in
  person, but having a tangible and handsome record of the
  exhibit is no small consolation.  Thanks again, Tom.  Your
  spirit of helpfulness is a fine role model for us all."


  George Kolbe writes: "We've just published a last-minute
  stocking-stuffer for the numismatic bibliophile:

  "Antiquarian Books on Coins and Medals from the
  Fifteenth to the Nineteenth Century" by Ferdinando
  Bassoli, Crestline & London, 2001  88 pages, 16 plates,
  clothbound, dust jacket

  Copies are now available for immediate shipment from
  George Frederick Kolbe. Details are available at the firm's
  web site:

  Originally published in book form in 1985 by Leo S. Olschki
  of Florence in Italian, this edition, translated by Elizabeth
  Saville, has been carefully revised and updated by the author.
  It is a delightful collection of easily read scholarly essays,
  written from both a numismatic and bibliophilic perspective.

  These essays will be of considerable interest to anyone
  interested in the literature of numismatics, particularly its
  landmark works. A great many of the earliest numismatic
  books were printed in Italy, and Dr. Bassoli does not neglect
  significant works printed in other countries, ranging from the
  sixteenth to the mid-nineteenth century.

  Starting off with a lengthy chapter on "Sixteenth century
  numismatics," the author also discusses, among other topics,
  classical numismatics in the seventeenth, eighteenth and
  nineteenth century, numismatic bibliography from its origins
  to 1850, classic works on Italian coins and medals, and the
  utility of coin auction catalogues. "Libraries of interest to the
  numismatist," and a general bibliography are followed by
  author and publisher indexes.

  Dr. Bassoli¹s work is the first in a projected series of
  publications devoted to the study of numismatic literature
  published jointly by George Frederick Kolbe and Spink &
  Son Ltd.

  The next title, Ernest Babelon¹s "Numismatics and Its History,"
  originally published in French as part of his monumental Traité
  des monnaies grecques et romaines, is in translation and is
  scheduled for publication in 2002."


  E-Sylum subscriber Gustavo A. Granada writes: "I realize
  there are references about "cleaning" and /or "retoning" of
  coins, but apparently not about bank notes.  Is anyone aware
  of literature dealing with cleaning of bank notes?"


  Véronique Lecomte-Collin and Bruno Collin write: "We
  have published two books in 2001:

 HISTOIRE DE LA MONNAIE, du troc à l'Euro chez
  Sélection du Reader's Digest

  L'ANTIQUITE A NOS JOURS, Editions de l'Amateur
  (2 volumes: les mondes antiques - de l'époque féodale
  à nos jours) 800 pages"


  Chet Dera writes: "I am giving a two-evening coin collecting
  seminar  to the public in February.  It will be your basic "what
  is collecting, what are coins, why collect, what to collect,
  grading, reference books etc".   The class size is 25.  I hope to
  spend about 20% of the class on grading and valuing coins
  and thus need copies of Photogrades and Redbooks I can use
  as text books.

  These would not be sold.  I will pass them out, explain how to
  use them, have the students grade and value a coin or two and
  then collect the books for use at the next course.  If anyone
  has any old Redbooks or Photogrades they would like to
  donate, please contact me at  I'm also
  going to give the NBS and The E-Sylum a plug in the seminar
  as I feel you can't have too many reference books.  Thanks"


  Concerning coin allergies, last week Dave Bowers wrote:
  "I have never come across any accounts of allergy to gold!"

  Granvyl G. Hulse, Jr., Numismatics International Librarian
  writes: "Dave Bowers' education must have been limited if
  he never took Greek mythology.  Everything King Midas
  touched turned to gold including his food."


  We've had some recent suggestions and inquiries concerning
  publishing in The E-Sylum listings to buy, sell, or trade
  individual numismatic books.  While we publicize auctions
  and price lists (as well as new publications in the field), we
  generally avoid listing buy/sell/trade information on individual
  books.  We want to keep the focus on the collecting and use
  of literature rather than on buying and selling.   While the
  The E-Sylum could be a good venue for that, it's not the only
  available venue.  eBay is one example, and so are web sites
  maintained by literature dealers.  These venues are much
  better positioned for those kinds of sales.  Please patronize
  the dealers who support NBS through their ads in our print
  journal, The Asylum, and our web site.


  Larry Mitchell discovered some interesting numismatic
  documents online at the Avalon Project of the Yale Law
  School.  He writes: "A search on coin*, etc., brings up
  some quite interesting results."

  Since we've been on the subject of antiquarian
  numismatic works, one example is "A Discourse Upon
  Coins" by Bernardo Davanzati.  Being publickly spoken
  in the Academy there, Anno 1588.  Translated out of
  Italian, by John Toland, London;   Printed by J.D. for
  Awnsham and John Churchil, at the Black Swan in Pater-
  Noster-Row, 1696."


  Inspired by last week's item about the Pearl Harbor
  anniversary, Nick Graver writes: "I read an interesting
  article recently about the upcoming 60th. anniversary of
  "Non-Recognition" of an important W.W. II event.

  Japan conducted a similar surprise attack on American
  bases in the Philippines at about the same time as Pearl
  Harbor.  [About ten hours later - Editor]   But since that
  region is so much farther west (nearer to Japan) the official
  date was 12/8/41 even though it was at about the same
  time!  The International Date Line dictated the time of
  record.  So, it was reported then as the next day, and so
  it has been retold every year since, even in history books!

  Those troops held out for many months, but were
  essentially "written off" as beyond help, and ultimately made
  the largest surrender ever for a US Army, and the famous
  Bataan Death March, etc. These veterans never wanted
  special recognition, but have resented the fact that they did
  not get at least Equal Recognition with the forces at Pearl

  It seems to be a chapter in the war that never was told
  correctly, and is not about to be clarified in modern times.
  I believe that Japan considers Pearl Harbor day (start of
  hostilities) to be Dec. 8th. since that was the date (in Japan)
  when it happened, and they got the news.   It was Dec. 7th.
  where it actually happened, and when USA got the news.

  The people in Hawaii were still free and able to begin to
  rebuild and conduct the rest of the war.  The troops in the
  Philippines were quickly overrun, and taken prisoner. They
  had it much worse, and got little credit or recognition.
  Everyone in the USA felt they were attacked the 'next day',
  sort of as an afterthought, or secondary objective.

  The simple solution to the "60 years of oversight" is next
  year for folks to say: "The 61st anniversary of the attacks
  on Pearl Harbor and the Philippines...."

  [See the following links to the original article in Modern
  Maturity magazine, and a second account of the attacks.
  Following are links to pages containing illustrations of
  Japan's Philippine invasion currency.  -Editor]


  From the ANA's young numismatist email newsletter comes
  this tip useful for adults as well:  "Did you know that a list of
  all of the books in the ANA Library is on-line at  It has just
  been updated and includes books and periodicals on every
  numismatic subject from tokens & medals to ancients thru
  modern U.S. & world coins and paper money."  [Your
  Newsletter, Number: 13 December 12, 2001]


  This week's featured web site is from the Worldwide
  Bi-Metallic Collectors Club and illustrates several new
  issues of bi-metallic coins.

 Wayne Homren
 Numismatic Bibliomania Society

Content presented in The E-Sylum is not necessarily researched or independently fact-checked, and views expressed do not necessarily represent those of the Numismatic Bibliomania Society.

The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization promoting numismatic literature.   For more information please see our web site at There is a membership application available on the web site.  To join, print the application and return it with your check to the address printed on the application.  Visit the Membership page. Those wishing to become new E-Sylum subscribers (or wishing to Unsubscribe) can go to the following web page link.

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