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'Bibliographic Services' Category Archives

Cycling: The Craze of the Hour

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In the first of a series of blogs, Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros – our Head of Bibliographic Services – explores the books that have been the inspiration for The London Library’s  Found on The Shelves series, published with Pushkin Press to coincide with our 175th anniversary. Here she reveals the story behind four works – all written…

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Search The London Library’s Catalogue with Catalyst

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The London Library’s new catalogue search tool, Catalyst is now live.  This is an exciting development for the Library, allowing members to search our print and online resources simultaneously. What does Catalyst contain? Books and Journals – All of the Library’s books and journals acquired since 1950 are now on Catalyst, as well as a substantial and growing…

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Unlucky Genius

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By Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros, Head of Bibliographic Services at The London Library. Adapted from an article originally written for History Today. Niccolò Fontana Tartaglia was one of the less fortunate and most cantankerous polymaths of the Italian Renaissance. He was born in 1500 in Brescia, the son of a humble courier who was murdered when Niccolò…

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Magic, Superstition, or Subversion?

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In 16th century Europe nothing was more vitally important, controversial or dangerous than religion. And yet as some of the books in The London Library show, at a time when wars, plague and religious persecution were part of everyday life, in the search for answers and reassurance there were some who turned away from the…

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The Library’s Italian Risorgimento Collection

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«Without Palmerston’s assistance, Naples would still be under the Bourbons, without Admiral Mundy I should not have been able to pass the Straits of Messina» – with these words, Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-1882), during his April 1864 visit to London, commended British support to the Italian national cause and the role unofficially played by the Royal…

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Moving Images

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Redemption can take many forms. A little book held at The London Library, containing iconic images of cruelty and suffering, is a eulogy for a fallen comrade, an attack on his torturers and killers and an attempt to silence those who accused the author of cowardice for escaping the martyr’s fate. By Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros, Head…

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Irresistible Beauty

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Books are often vandalised and mutilated by those who find their content offensive. On the other hand, they are sometimes taken apart by those who find the beauty of their component parts simply irresistible. By The London Library’s Head of Bibliographic Services, Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros. Adapted from an article originally written for History Today. In 1573…

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Training for Martyrdom

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By Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros, Head of Bibliographic Services at The London Library. Adapted from an article originally written for History Today. In 1558 Mary Tudor’s brief Catholic reign came to an end.  Just as English Protestants  who had fled to Lutheran and Calvinist havens on the continent were beginning to return home, in Oxford and Cambridge…

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Wellbeing and Welfare

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As St. Bartholomew’s Day is coming up this month, our Head of Bibliographic Services, Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros discusses wellbeing and welfare. Adapted from an article originally written for History Today. In the 16th century two doctors from enemy nations were moved to write about personal wellbeing and social welfare. They were both compassionate, prominent in their…

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What is Love?

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Is love a gentle emotion that inspires sonnets, an all-consuming passion that drives people to desperate actions, an enigma that defies explanation, an absurdity that deserves to be ridiculed or a dangerous affliction that should come with a health warning? By Dunia Garcia-Ontiveros, Head of Bibliographic Services at The London Library, adapted from an article…

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