Berger authors definitive glossary of book knowledge

Sidney Berger
Sidney Berger, Adjunct Professor

A new book by Sidney Berger (MS '87) offers readers a definitive glossary for understanding how books are made and how they are described in the bookselling, book collecting, and library worlds. The Dictionary of the Book: A Glossary for Book Collectors, Booksellers, Librarians and Others (published by Rowman & Littlefield) was released this month.

Berger's book contains over 1,300 different key terms and covers all areas of book knowledge, including such topics as typeface terminology, book collecting, book design, bibliography, the language of manuscripts, writing implements, librarianship, legal issues, and the parts of a book. In addition, more than 100 illustrations demonstrate the physical process of bookmaking, from printing techniques to binding structures and decorations.

"The volume took more than 40 years to write and, with its more than 100 illustrations, it should help anyone dealing with rare or common books," said Berger. "It is the only book with up-to-date definitions of the key terms in the rare-book, book-collecting, and rare-book librarianship fields."

Berger is director emeritus of the Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum and an adjunct professor in the iSchool, where he teaches courses on rare books and special collections. He is a professor at Simmons College, where he has taught in library and information science, English, and communications. He is the 2016 recipient of the LSAA Distinguished Alumnus Award and the author of the landmark Rare Books and Special Collections (ALA-Shuman, 2014), which received the 2015 ABC-CLIO Award for the Best Book in Library Literature.

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