Rare books in German are popular among collectors of literature and history. Libraries and museums frequently feature large collections of rare German books in their exhibits for the public. If you also enjoy collecting antique German books, you will appreciate the resources in the following article.
Several universities have outstanding collections of rare books in German. Here are a few that you may enjoy.
Yale University started its collection of German literature in 1913 when it was encouraged by much of the faculty who had received their education in Germany. By 1928 the Yale University Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library housed over 20,000 rare German books, prints, manuscripts and more spanning the 17th through the 19th century. The exhibition area is open Monday through Thursday from 8:30am to 8:00pm, Friday from 8:30am until 5:00pm and Saturday from 10:00am to 5:00pm. For more information, you can visit their website.
University of California, Berkley
The library at Berkley houses a collection of German studies that includes the Bancroft library's Fruchtbringende Gesellschaft collection. This collection contains the works of Germany's first literary society and can be purchased from Brill Publishers for you to add to your own collection of rare German books.
University of Cincinnati
The Blegen Library, located in the Archives and Rare Books Library of the university, houses one largest German-American history collections in the United States. The collection includes newspapers, manuscripts and literature pertaining to German-American history. To view the library's collection, it is necessary to make an appointment by contacting the library staff at 513-556-1959.
Pennsylvania State University
At the Penn State Special Collections Library, collectors of rare German books can find the Allison-Shelley Collection of German literature. This collection features the Saur Bible, the first German language Bible printed in America.
Duke's West European Collection includes The Jantz Collection which consists of 3500 titles of German Baroque literature among other items of interest to German book collectors.
Located in Wellesly, Massachusetts, the Margaret Clapp Library's Special Collections department contains various rare books including several early German Bibles as well as tracts written by Martin Luther.
More Rare Books in German
If you enjoyed the university collections of rare German books, here are some other places you will enjoy.
- William Dailey Rare Books has an amazing collection of rare German books available for purchase. Located in Los Angeles, California, you are sure to find something here that you can't live without for your personal collection.
- The German Archive for Literature in Marbach has possibly the world's largest collection of German literature with over 750,000 books as well as German magazines and art.
- eBay is a good place to search for rare books in German if you would like to add to your own collection. A recent search found nearly 100 auctions as well as web stores featuring rare books. For example:
- Antique Book Central has a nice selection of rare German books reaching back to the 1860s.
- Joy's Books and Sundries has a few German antique books including an 1888 German hymnal for $99.99.
If you enjoy collecting rare books in German, you may also adore collecting other rare books found in rare book stores or on the Internet. For example, you there are rare books by J.R.R. Tolkien, French Literature or antique religious books. Perhaps you love to read classic books. Whatever your preference, all of these can bring great enjoyment to historians and lovers of literature alike.