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L'Histoire du Concile de Trente, in the beautiful and engrossed his mind to the point of making London edition, he said to himself: 'What on him forget his judge and the fate that threatened earth does a man like that want with such a pre him, was learning that in London there had been cious book!' Accordingly, he takes it and hides discovered a second copy of this book, for the posit under his cassock, thinking that no one ob session of which he had not hesitated to commit served him. But the little man (Du Moustier), a murder. And this is not all.

The inquiry who was

on the lookout, saw what the datary elicited that this terrible amateur of books was had done, and, furious, said to the legate that 'he not at his first essay—that he had already mur. was greatly obliged by the honor that his Emi dered twelve of his customers merely to get back nence did him, but it was a scandal that he the rare books that he himself had sold them. should bring thieves in his company:' and on the

This brutal monomaniac was condemned to be instant, taking Pamfili by the shoulders, he garotted; and up to the day of his execution, he thrust him out of doors, having first taken the had but one solicitude; he asked but one favor, book from him. Later on, wlien Pamfili was which was, that after his death his private book elected pope (September 15, 1644), some one said and his stock-in-trade should not be put up to to Du Moustier that the pope would excommuni auction and dispersed, but that they should cate him, and that he would turn as black as a be placed religiously, and as a whole, in the pubcoal. “He will do me a great kindness,' returned

lic library of Barcelona. the artist, 'for I am only too white as it is (mean

Amongst the most famous and the least scrupuing his hair and his beard).''

lous borrowers of books is cited by common conAnother Italian church dignitary, Cardinal

sent Eáme Courtois, concerning whom M. Louis Dominique Passionei, who himself

Paris, formerly librarian at Rheims, tells us in his

was very nearly made pope, and of whom the President de

Souvenirs some very amusing anecdotes. The Brosses has given us, in his Lettres sur l'Italie,

academician Villemain, so M. Jules Richard af

firms in his treatise on L'Art de Former une Bibsuch a lively and amusing portrait, had succeeded in getting together a magnificent library by means

liotheque, "never returned borrowed books, and similar to those told of Innocent X. Being sent

the co-operation of his secretary was necessary,

that the lender might go surreptitiously and rein 1721 to Lucerne in the capacity of Nuncio, Passionei was seized with an extraordinary curiosity

cover his property." Another immortal, M. Louis

de Lomenie, according to the same bibliographer, with regard to the abbeys and convents of Switz

was touched with the same foible. erland, and with a vast admiration for them. He was upflagging in his inspection of them, remain

But it is not always to stow away in book-cases ing for long hours in the libraries of these estab

to contemplate and gloat over, that amateurs lay lishments; and he never left without having his

violent hands upon volumes that come in their cloak well lined and bulgiug extensively. He

way and happen to take their fancy; it is also

for the sake of traffic. At the head of this secwent so far as to contrive a less compromising

ond category of unhandsome bibliophiles, the and more expeditious way of getting the books into his possession. He pretended to be engaged

man with the prophetic name, the famous Count

Libri, deserves unquestionably to take his place. in serious study, and that he had to make minute

If it is true, as some affirm, that the greatest numresearch in these librapies; had himself locked in,

ber of books are stolen from the libraries of Italy, that he might be undisturbed, and then threw

Count Libri had been to the right school, and he out of the window to one of his trusty servants

must have served there a thorough apprenticethe most precious volomes.

ship before crossing the mountains and coming to The most singular and dramatic testimony to the work in France. the follies and crimes begotten by a fondness for

He was, however, a man of high ability, a math. books is furnished us by a bookseller of Barcelona, ematician and scholar of the first rank, and a man who lived in the early part of this century. This of unparalleled plausibility. Coming to France dealer, named Vincente, seeing that one of his fel at twenty-seven, without a penny, three years lows had gotten the better of him at a sale and ac. later, thanks to the support of Argo, he was quired a very rare work, a copy, supposed to be elected Member of the Institute in place of the unique, of the Ordonaciones por los Gloriosas Reyes geometrician Legendre; then he obtained the de Aragon (1482), was filled with such vexation Professorship of Analysis at the Faculty of and fury on this account that he did not stick at Sciences in Paris, and received, with the Cross of getting admittance the next night into the house the Legion of Honor, the title of Inspector-Genof his successful rival and murdering him to get eral of Public Education. It was the libraries of possession of the inestimable treasure. When ar the provinces that Count Libri was especially ap. rested the following day, Vincepte did not attempt pointed to inspect; and the manner in which he to deny it. He was imprisoned and brought to acquitted himself of his task was truly originaltrial, but what caused him the deepest concern it consisted in plundering these establishments.

After each round of Mr. Inspector-General, the the post of librarian to the town of Troyes since disappearance from the institutions visited of

1842. The havoc made by him in the establishoriginal manuscripts, of important documents, of ment confided to his care baffles all attempt at rare books, was proved unquestionably. It is computation. Being informed against by the estimated that in five years, from 1842 to 1847, porter of the mayoralty, who had noticed the Libri purloined over 20,000 pounds sterling worth abstraction of books, Harmand was condemned to of printed matter and manuscript, and that the sale four years' in prisonment. After the manner of of these in France and in London did not bring Libri, he tried to pass himself off as a political him less than double that sum. Before offering martyr, and attributed the proceedings instituted the stolen volumes for sale he manipulated themagainst bim to personal enmity, and in particular "faked" them, made a difference in the binding, to the ill-will of a former mayor of Troyes. Harat which delicate operations he was very skillful. mand had taken care to remove from the catalogue

The first information lodged against him in 1846 the names of the books he appropriated, so that was without result. The year following, apropos the experts, Messrs. Ludovic Lalanne and Anatole of a valuable manuscript stolen from the library of de Montaiglon, could find no trace of these volumes, Troyes, a second indictment was laid and a secret and their task became an almost impossible one. inquiry instituted against this extraordinary In A discovery, which one may call providential, enspector General. But he had procured for him abied them to complete anew a good part of the self numerous protectors-amongst others, M. original catalogue, and to offer proof as to a porGuizot. Thanks to him, the accusation was again tion of what had been carried off. The loose slips about to be squashed and the matter hushed up, which had been used in compiling the catalogue when the Revolution of 1848 broke out. The had been consigned to the garret. During many Libri brief was discovered at the Ministry of For years the mice overrunning these attics had had eign Affairs, and it was decided to prosecute the plenty of opportunity to nibble at these papers; inquiry. Libri, being warned of this decision, so that whole sections of the catalogue," Fine Arts" had time to escape and reach England, carrying and "Polite Literature,” were reduced to shreds. with him the thirty thousand volumes which On the other hand, other sections, "Theology" he possessed, which were for the most part the and “History," the loose slips of which were in proceeds of embezzlement and swindling. Hav another corner of the garret, under a loft, had reing taken refuge in London, with his wife, Libri, mained intact; and it was these which enabled who was condemned by default to ten years' im the experts to restore the catalogue to its entirety prisonment and to be deprived of his dignities and as regards those sections. But what had saved offices, never ceased to protest against the sen these last-named portions from the depredations tence. He persisted in ascribing it to political of the mice? An owl, which had slipped in under apimosity, although the inquiry instituted against the tiles of the loft, had for long had her dwelling hiin was prior to the advent of the Republic. there, thus taking "History" and "Theology" unThe whole public, and notably bibliophiles der her wing.

a body, were excited by this affair. Libri, in Removals effected from public libraries by the spite of his sentence, preserved numerous and caretakers are very difficult, and consequently relconspicuous partisans, such as Gustave Brunet,

as Gustave Brunet, atively infrequent. The curator always has some Paul Lacroix, Achille Joubinal, Laboulaye, Paulin assistant, whose vigilance it would be necessary Paris, Alfred de Wailly-above all, Merimee. to elude or whose complicity would have to be When, in 1791, Mme. Melanie Libri forwarded a bought. Thefts effected by readers are also not petition to the Senate and endeavored to use her

at all easy, and, considering the number of readers, influence to get the judgment pronounced against they are very rare.

they are very rare. Every where the most minute her husband set aside, the attorney, Dupin, so precautions are taken to baffle thieves. Every given to cutting jeux de mots, did not miss the

work which comes into a public library, whatever opportunity to launch one at the friends of this it


be and from whatever source, whether parasite of libraries: "Dans cette affaire Libri, il y purchased, given or taken in exchange, is, as soon a des gens qui agissent vraiment avec une leger as received, entered in the register, marked with ete de-colibri!M. Leopold Delisle has proved a number corresponding with this entry, and the guilt of the ex-Inspector General clearly and

stamped with the stamp of the establishment. This without possibility of gainsaying. Some of the

last impression, which is in indelible ink, is made volumes purloined by the latter were bought in several places, two at least, on the title-page to back again by the French Government in 1888.

begin with, then on another page, which is always Another case of theft having a great similarity the same in each respective library. If the plates to the preceding is that of Harmand, whose trial

or illustrations are bound up with the volume, it took place before the Assize Court of the Aube in

is usual to stamp eachione of them; and in addition February, 1873. Auguste Harmand had filled

very often the binding bears on the sides the arms


of the library. How many almost indestructible the dictum at their trial, they acted as receivers tokens, therefore, has the thief to get rid of if he for each other. wishes to sell the stolen goods? But even suppos A recent trial involved a pretty disagreeable ing the expunging and erasing to have been surprise for the man who brought the action-one effected with the greatest skill, where is the of the chief book dealersin Paris. He had noticed dealer in old books, who at the nioment of pur for some time an unusual decrease in his receipts, chase, in turning over the leaves, will not detect and upon his shelves empty places no less inexplisome trace of the operations? And what trouble, cable. There could be no doubt he was being what care, labor, time, what ingenuity, to achieve robbed, and that the thieves were his own clerks. more or less successfully these erasures and sup At last he caught two of them red-handed. The pressions!

inquiry showed that these clerks, not satisfied Lately a wretched clerk was detected by a book with embezzling their master's books, did also a seller to whom he offered a work purloined from little business outside. When they were sent on the Sainte Genevieve library, a Traite de Machines errands to other booksellers, they used their light a Vapeur. He had effaced-God knows at what fingers in tempting places and never returned pains! the four marks of this establishment-that without a profitable capture. And the most is to say, the monogram on the binding, the stamp serious point was, that their principal, the proson the title-page, on page 41, and on the last page ecutor in this very action, bought these books --and thought himself safe from discovery. He from his clerks at a reduction of sixty per cent. had not observed, however, that the treatise was The examining judge did not fail to remark upon composed of two volumes bound in one; he had, the fact, which was again made the subject of therefore, not erased the stamp from the title-page criticism at the trial. A shade more of culpability, nor from page 4 of the second volume, and these and the master would have taken his place upon marks, striking the notice of the bookseller, be the prisoners' bench with those whom he accused. trayed the thief immediately.

To enumerate all the methods employed by unRobberies of books perpetrated at the ware scrupulous customers or professional thieves to houses of publishers, binders, booksellers and defraud booksellers and dealers in old books dealers may be classed under two heads: thefts would be endless. Let us confine ourselves to committed by the staff of the publisher, binder or the most ordinary. bookseller, or by the assistants of houses doing A lady who at last acquired a legendary repubusiness with this staff; and thefts perpetrated by tation amongst the dealers on the Quay--"The the public, habitual or casual customers.

lady with the umbrella," as they called her-conA publisher notices that books are disappearing trived to let fall into her umbrella, which was in quantities from bis warehouse, without being propped against her person, closed but neither able to trace either in his correspondence or in his rolled nor fastened, the book which she selected; books the reason for their absence. He scents out and her choice-"cruelle enigme!"-fell almost exa systematic swindle. The guilty person must clusively upon the novels of M. Paul Bourget. necessarily have accomplices in order to pass on Another type pot less notorious is the amateur his goods. Who, then, are these receivers? How of first editions, a little lame individual, who never can they be discovered? One method that I saw went about without the help of a stick, a beautiused not very long ago consists of marking in ful rattan-cane with chased silver knob, and was secret, very faintly in pencil (in the same manner never seen without a heavy morocco portfolio. as they stamp the books of a library on a given He used to go from one bookseller to another page) in one and the same place, the volumes where he knew he should find first editions of the that are likely to be taken. As booksellers or best modern novels, and as soon as the volumes dealers who buy and stock books in large quanti- he called for-fifteen or so at least-were piled up ties are not relatively very numerous, and as they on the counter and as he was on the point of lookhave for the most part a specialty, a certain class ing at them, he let fall his stick. The shopman, of books that they usually deal in, conjecture is out of politeness towards a customer, and out of soon circumscribed within narrow limits, and the consideration for an invalid, immediately stooped receiver, with the marked volumes in his posses to pick it up, and this half-second sufficed for the sicn, cannot deny his complicity.

little man to hide away two or three copies in the About twenty years ago a dozen assistants of portfolio upon the counter beside him. the chief music publishers conceived a device as In one of the sonnets which he has published simple as it was ingenious for defrauding their under the title of Legendes du Livre, M. Francois principals. They carried on

a barter among

Fertiault, a fastidious scholar and ardent bibliothemselves, and by this means did without, or phile, has celebrated the misdeeds of a certain Dr. nearly suppressed, that compromising inter R. in the shops of Lyous. In order to obtain mediary, the receiver; in other words, according to cheaply choice works published in several vol

umes, Dr. R. used to purloin one of the volumes, ing of his cloak twelve volumes of Reclus' Geoand then, eight or ten days later, he would return graphie, which represent the respectable weight of and haggle over the work-"which, as you see, is eighty pounds or more, and does credit to the not complete!"

tailor who supplied such stout, well-sewn material. "Alors a prix bas, il tache qu'on le cede,

But the neatest trick was that practiced some Pour un depareille, bonne affaire! On accede."

years ago upon a bookseller in the Rue Soufflot. And so the trick succeeded, and the work was

A passer-by sees one morning amongst the books complete once more.

exposed outside this shop a copy of Littre's DicIt is notorious that people who steal books are

tionary, five bound volumes, in perfect condition, found in every grade of society. There are street

marked eighty francs. There is no one on duty, boys trained to steal books, and these do their nobody looking after the place, the pavement is work under the supervision of a chief. One of deserted. Quickly be seizes the five books, slips these was lately arrested in the neighborhood of

them under bis arm, thrusts the compromising the Odeon; he used to lie in wait regularly in the

ticket with the price into his pocket, and enters garden of the Luxembourg, beside the railing

the shop of the very man to whom the Littre bethat runs along the Rue de Medicis, and from this longs--belonged, rather-and proposes to him that place he watched over his pupils, who used to

he should buy them. "A Littre?" the tradesman prowl about under the galleries and bring him interrupts; “I can't do with that; I have one on their plunder as they got it. He knew books with

show there, and two others yonder." However, a reputation, was careful to acquaint himself with scenting an exceptionally good bargain, he changes new books and those that made a hit, and he

his mind. To drag these enorn ous and heavy pointed these out to “his men.” All that they

quartos about the streets, thinks he, this poor devil carried off sold well.

must be hard up. Moreover, with a Littre there is Amongst thefts of books that have made a sen

no risk, it will always sell. "I cannot give you sation in the last year or two, we must not omit to

more than thirty francs," says he; "I have already mention those of the Abbe B., who held the post

three Littres. It is solely to oblige you that I of professor at an important educational establish

offer that." "Say thirty-five?" "No; thirty; no ment in Paris. There is hardly a bookseller or old

more.” The vendor is in great need of money; he dealer on the left bank of the Seine who has not accepts; pockets the sum-and disappears! The received frequent visits from this ecclesiastic.

"Littre dodge" is not yet forgotten in the trade Slopmen who at last succeeded in spying out his

and the book world generally. manoeuvres and giving their principals informa In spite of its frequency, and save in some tion, were within an ace of being suspected them- quite exceptional cases, book stealing is without selves and dismissed. Unfortunately for him, the

doubt the least lucrative of all thieving. Leaving Abbe B.—wbo, by the by, belonged to the category out of question those large and important works of thieves noticed at the beginning of this article, called “library books" just referred to; omitting "wbo keep and do not sell again”—had a mania some novelties, and especially rare volumes, cerfor geology: he was caught in the act of stealing tain illustrated books, some first editions, the treasspecimens of minerals from the Ecole des Mines, his ures of bibliophiles --stolen books sell at a ridicdwelling was searched, and everything discovered. ulous price. The reduction of sixty per cent. to Shortly after, the Abbe B., who left Paris and which a large book dealer owned, is generally a took refuge in Normandy, was said to have been great deal exceeded in wholesale and second-hand found dead at the foot of a cliff.

sales such as follow upon embezzlement and theft. According to many booksellers, it is towards It was at a reduction of ninety per cent. that one the end of the month, that is to say, when purses of our noted publishing houses cleared off, some are empty or are getting low, that these thefts are years ago, a quantity of copies de luxe; and it was of most frequent occurrence. What are termed upon almost the same terms that the splendid "library books,” books of current reference, stock of M. Jouast, one of the last printers of the encyclopædic works, are those which thieves lay old school, was parted with. As to the book at 3 hands upon by preference. Larousse's large Dic fr. 50 C., the discount, except in the case of a tionary is notably an object of cupidity. The novelty, is still more considerable. At sales of weight of a book is not always an obstacle to its publishers' stock effected of late, the price of abstraction: witness "The man with the Inverness volumes marked 3 fr. 50 C., except for authors cloak," as he was called, whose memory is still with a higb reputation, fluctuated betweeer o fr. green at Hachette's establishment. This partic- 05 c. and o fr 30 c., that is to say, they underwent ular individual, who always came dressed in a a loss of from ninety-one to ninety eight per cent. voluminous cloak with a cape, and who had al

We must admit, then, that to steal books, under ready aroused suspicions, probably well-founded, such conditions, is truly to run risks and torment succeeded one fine day in slipping into the lin

oueself for very little.

THACKERAY'S CONNECTION WITH is so too, not merely to her schoolmistress and “PUNCH."

friends, but to everybody--to her servants and

her nurses. I would sooner have you gentle and The sixth volume of the Biographical Edition gentle-minded than ever so clever. Who was born of Thackeray is devoted entirely to his contribu on Christmas day? Somebody who was so great tions to Punch; and Mrs. Ritcbie's "Introduction"

that all the world worships Him, and so good that

all the world loves Him, and so gentle and humble naturally has much to say of the circle of wits

that He never spake an unkind word. And there and artists who met every week at the famous

is a little sermon, and a great deal of love and dinner around the "Mahogany Tree."

affection, from

PAPA." It was early in 1842 that Edward Fitzgerald Thackeray's tribute to Punch was paid in the wrote to a common friend, “Tell Thackeray not to following memorable words: “There never were go on Punch yet.” Punch was only a year old at published before in this world so many volumes this time, but Leech, Douglas Jerrold and Kenny that contained so much cause for laughing, so litMeadows were all on the staff; and notwithstand tle for blushing. It is so easy to be witty and ing Mr. Fitzgerald's advice, in the middle of June wicked, so hard to be witty and wise!" Miss Fickletoby's “Lectures on English History” Mrs. Ritchie gives us the following glimpse of began to appear in its columns, They were not a her father at this time when the popularity of his success, and did not go beyond Edward III. By "Snob Papers' was helping to make Punch prosChristmas, 1843, Mr. Thackeray became a regular perous: contributor, and took his seat at the Punch table "All the writers of Punch have carved their as a successor to Albert Smith.

names in turn upon 'The Mahogany Tree.' J. L.

and W: M. T., and M. L., the first editor of these What some of Thackeray's friends thought of

days, and the noble J. T., and dear D. M., whose his work on Punch may be learned from the following extract from Fitzgerald's letter to Freder

sun-tipped pen and pencil reached so far, and A.

G., who only writes delightfully as yet, but whose ick Tennyson. Mr. Fitzgerald had met a common

drawings will surely come to the fore. 'It is on friend, Stone, in the street. Stone loved Thack

record,' says Mr. Spielmann, 'how Douglas Jerrold eray, but the latter's outspeakings in Punch sorely tried him. Mr. Fitzgerald wrote:

would go radiant to the dinner when Mrs. Caudle

was sending up Punch's circulation. Thackeray, “Stone worked himself up to such a pitch un too, first tasted the delights of wide popularity in der the pressure of forced calmness that he at last

the success of his "Snob Papers," and showed the said that Thackeray will get himself horse whipped pleasure felt in his demeanor at the board.' Mr. one day by one of these infuriated Appeleses. At Spielmann quotes tbe beautiful elegy on my this, I, who had partly agreed with Stone that ridi father's death which was written for Punch by Mr cule, though true, need not always be spoken, began Shirley Brooks: to laugh, and told him that two could play at that

“ His heart wide open to all kindly thought, game. These painters cling together and bolster

His band so quick to give, his tongue to praise.' each other up to such a degree that they really bave persuaded themselves that any one who ven

"The lines are well known, as they deserve to tures to laugh at one of their drawings, exhibited

be, and they in truth describe my father as he was publicly for the express purposes of criticism, in

to his friends, rather than to the strangers, 'who sults the whole corps. In the meanwhile old

but knew his books, not him.' As a boy and a Thackeray laughs at all this and goes on in his

young man, his sense of the ludicrous often carown way, writing hard for half a dozen reviews

ried him into the regions of nonsensical burlesque, and newspapers all the morning; driving, drink

and he has said to us that he wished some of his ing and talking of a night; managing to preserve

early and more personal jokes had never been a fresh color and perpetual flow of spirits under a

printed. It must have been froin such a feeling wear and tear of thinking and feeling that would

as this that he told Mr. Motley the 'Snob Papers' have knocked out any other man I know two

were those of his writings he liked the least, and

that he published a note of explanation when he years ago at least."

withdrew a certain number of these papers from At this time Mrs. Ritchie and her sister were

the collected edition." small girls living at their grandmother's, and they

What a flood of memories must have come into saw their father only occasionally. She gives the

Mrs. Ritchie's mind as she wrote the following: following beautiful letter which her father wrote

"Turning over the pages of Punch, and looking to her on December 30, 1845:

at the familiar titles and histories and pictures, My Dearest Nanny: Your letter has made me the circumstances under which all these were deand mamma very happy, and very sad too that we vised come vaguely back to my mind again. Suns are away from our dearest little girls. But I for long set begin to shine once more through the old one shall see you before very long-I hope in a Kensington study-windows. My father's silvery, week from this day—and only write now to wish gray head is bending over his drawing-board as he you a happy New Year. How glad I am that it sits at his work, serious, preoccupied, with the is a black puss and not a black nuss you have got! water.color box open on the table beside him and I thought you did not know how to spell nurse, the tray full of well remembered implements. To and had spelled it en-you-double-ess, but I see the the writer her own childhood comes back and fills spelling gets better as the letter grows longer. her world. The old friend who used to pose for They cannot be too long for me. Laura must be him so often as a niodel in those days seems to be a very good-natured girl. I hope my dear Nanny forty summers young again. There she is, sitting

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