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J. Ben Lieberman early printed leaf collection


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library Special Collections. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

American educator, editor, author, and amateur printer J. Ben Lieberman (1914-1984) is widely regarded as the father of the twentieth-century chappel movement in the United States. Lieberman was the founder and first president of the American Printing History Association. In 1952, he established the Herity Press, a private press he ran with his wife until 1982.

Lieberman also held patents on typographical equipment and is the author of many books on typography and printing, including

The Modern Chappel Movement (1957), Papermaking and Manufacture of Paper Products: A Manual (1958), and Types of Typefaces and How to Recognize Them (1967).

"J. Ben Lieberman."Contemporary Authors Online. Detroit: Gale, 1998. Reproduced in Gale Biography in Context, accessed January 7, 2011.

Originally part of the J. Ben Lieberman papers, the J. Ben Lieberman early printed leaf collection contains examples of printing Lieberman acquired as an amateur printer, type enthusiast, and proponent of the private press. The collection includes eleven specimens in Latin, German, Italian, and French, and spans the fifteenth century to the eighteenth century. The leaves represent a variety of texts, with topics ranging from art and architecture to the Bible.

The collection is arranged into four series and chronologically within each series: I. Leaves from books printed in Germany; II. Leaves from books printed in Frances; III. Leaves of books printed in Italy; and IV. Leaves of unknown origin.

Each folder contains a single leaf unless otherwise noted. Of particular interest is a stenciled breviary on vellum, which has been described by Dr. Consuelo Dutschke, Curator, Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University. Note: Dr. Dutschke has only examined a digital image of the breviary.

Box 1: Shelved in SPEC MSS oversize boxes (20 inches)

Purchase, 1998.

Processed by Ryan L. Roth, December 2005. Encoded by Maureen Cech, January 2011.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Finding Aid Date
2011 January 7
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library,

Collection Inventory

Biblia Latina cum glossa ordinaria Walafridi Strabonis et interlineari Anselmi Laudunensis, before 1481.
Box 1 Folder F1
Scope and Contents

Printed in Strassburg by Adolph Rusch for Anton Koberger, Nuremberg. 1 leaf, initials, paragraph marks in red, blue; rubricated throughout.

Biblia Germanica, 1483.
Box 1 Folder F2
Scope and Contents

Printed in Nuremberg by Anton Koberger. 2 leaves, initials, paragraph marks in red, blue; rubricated throughout.

Vitruvius Teutsch, 1548.
Box 1 Folder F3
Scope and Contents

By Marcus Vitruvius Pollio, translated by Walther Hermann Ryff. Printed in Nuremberg by Johan Petreius. 1 leaf, without rubrication; printed fraktur.

Index cum fidelis tum copiosus in Consilia D. Felini Sandaei ... isque duplex--alter capitum seu argumentorum, alter rerum vocum in primis singularium …, 1553.
Box 1 Folder F4
Scope and Contents

By Felino Maria Sandeo. Printed in Lyon by Heirs of Jacopo Giunta. 1 leaf, title page, in black, with 1 woodcut of fleur-de-lis, children.

De Imitatione Christi, 1788.
Box 1 Folder F5
Scope and Contents

By Thomas à Kempis. Printed in Paris by Pierre-François Didot. 1 leaf, on wove paper made by Montgolfier at Annonay. For another leaf, see

Original Leaves from Famous European Books . London: Folio Society, n.d. Special Collections folio+ Z250 .A1 O752x 1900z.
Médailles sur les principaux événements du Règne entier de Louis le Grand avec des explications historiques, [1723].
Box 1 Folder F6
Scope and Contents

By the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres. Printed in Paris by Imprimerie Royale. 1 leaf, with engravings and decorative engraved border. First published in 1702 as

Médailles sur les pricipaux évènements du regne de Louis le Grand with 289 plates. Since this leaf reproduces a medal dated 1703, it likely comes from the second edition of 1723 with 29 additional plates. See Stanley Morison’s The Typographic Book . For another leaf, from the same edition, see Original Leaves from Famous European Books . London: Folio Society, n.d. Special Collections folio+ Z250 .A1 O752x 1900z.

Historia Naturale, 1476.
Box 1 Folder F7
Scope and Contents

Printed in Venice by Nicolas Jenson. 1 leaf, initial spaces, with guide letters, not filled in; without rubrication. For another leaf, see MS 474, Frank Tober collection, F46. For a leaf of the 1472 Latin edition see also from Tober: Special Collections. folio+ Z232 .J54 S56x 1966

Catalogus Sanctorum et Gestorum Eorum, 1493.
Box 1 Folder F8
Scope and Contents

By Petrus de Natalibus, edited by Antonius Verlus. Printed in Venice by Henricus de Sancto. 1 leaf, paragraph marks in black; without rubrication; 3 woodcut initials; watermark of hat.

Decisiones sacrae rotae romanae coram Rev. Patre Domino Hieronymo Crispo…, 1728.
Box 1 Folder F9
Scope and Contents

Published by the Catholic Church. Printed in Urbino by Antonio Fantauzzi. 1 leaf, title page in red and black; etching (and engraving?), two dolphins; faint watermark of fleur-de-lis.

Stenciled breviary, circa 1700-1800.
Box 1 Folder F10
Scope and Contents

Stenciled breviary, vellum, red and black, Latin. Dr. Consuelo Dutschke writes (as of 12 December 2005): "One leaf from a choir breviary from the Common of Saints, this section pertaining to the service at matins for a virgin martyr, a virgin not martyr, or a matron."

Physical Description

465mm x 325 mm

Print, Suggest