Page:Essays in librarianship and bibliography.djvu/227

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207
SOME COLOPHONS OF EARLY PRINTERS

friend Mr. Dewey rightly tells we ought to think of librarians.

Enough, perhaps, has been said to warrant the suggestion of a little book of colophons, bringing together what must now be laboriously hunted up from Panzer, Hain, and similar authorities. Its principal aim should be to collect whatever might illustrate the feelings with which the ancient printers regarded themselves and their art in the fifteenth century; but every colophon should also be given which throws a light on contemporary history and public feeling on any subject. I should, for instance, include that in which the peaceful character of Paul II.'s pontificate is recognised by the epithet "placatissimum," and any that conveyed a compliment to a king, doge, or any leading personage of the time. Such a little volume, tastefully executed, something after the pattern of Monsieur Müntz's delightful little book in the Vatican Library under Platina, would, I believe, be a favourite companion with many an amateur of ancient typography.

In conclusion, I may say a few words respecting what we are endeavouring to do at the British Museum for the illustration of early printing. Of the little exhibition of title-pages and colophons displayed at the Association's visit to the Museum yesterday, since you have all seen it, I need only say that the credit of collecting and arranging it is entirely due to Mr. Pollard, whose essay on the subject I have already recommended to your perusal. A more permanent collection is