Bibliography (Gr. βιβλίov, a book, and γράφείv to describe), literally, the description of books. Among the Greeks the term βιβλίov γράφίά signified only the writing or transcription of books; and a bibliographer with them was a writer of books, in the sense of a copyist. The French term libliographie was long used to signify only an acquaintance with ancient writings, and with the art of deciphering them. In its modern and more extended sense, bibliography may be defined to be the science or knowledge of books, in regard to the materials of which they are composed, their different degrees of rarity, curiosity, reputed and real value, the subjects discussed by their respective authors, and the rank which they ought to hold in the classification of a library. It is therefore divided into two branches, the first of which has reference to the contents of books, and may be called, for want of a better phrase, intellectual bibliography; the second treats of their external character, the history of particular copies, etc, and may be termed material bibliography.
The object of the first kind is to acquaint literary men with the most valuable books in every department of study, either by means of alphabetical catalogues simply, or by catalogues raisonnes, accompanied by critical remarks. - It is the province of the bibliographer to be acquainted with the materials of which books are composed, and their different forms, the number of pages, the typographical character, the number and description of the plates, the completeness, correctness, and all the other external peculiarities or distinctions of an edition. He knows not only the treatises that have been written on any particular topic, their comparative value, and the various editions of books, but also in what important respects one edition differs from another, when and from what cause omissions have been made, deficiencies supplied, errors corrected, and additions subjoined. When books have been published anonymously or pseudonymously, he indicates the real name of the concealed author; and with regard to the rarity of books, he is acquainted with all the causes which have contributed to render them scarce. In compiling a catalogue, he assigns to them that place which they ought to hold in the system of classification adopted for arranging a public or private collection of books.
These legitimate duties of the bibliographer, however, require a variety and extent of knowledge seldom if ever possessed by a single individual, and different writers have selected different fields of labor in the science. - A collection of all the works belonging to the various departments of bibliography would, it has been estimated, exceed 20,000 volumes. The more important of these are indicated or described in Namur's Bibliographie paleographi-co-diplomatico-bibliographique generale (2 vols. 8vo, Liege, 1838); also in Peignot's Repertoire bibliographique universel (8vo, Paris, 1812); Home's "Introduction to the Study of Bibliography," vol. ii. (8vo, London, 1814); Bohn's "General Catalogue," vol. i. (8vo, London, 1847); Petzholdt's Anzeiger far Bibliographie und Bibliotheksic issenschqft, an important periodical commenced in 1840 in Halle; and in Petzholdt's remarkably full and complete catalogue entitled Bibliotheca Blbliographica (Leipsic, 18G6). For information upon certain points connected with bibliography, see Book, Bookbinding, Diplomatics, Engraving, Library, Manuscripts, Paper, Printing, and Writing. The following elementary works treat generally upon all matters appertaining to this science.
Although most of them are old, and some not well digested, they nevertheless contain much curious as well as useful information:
Achard. C. F. Cours elementaire de bibliographie. 3 vols. 8vo, Marseilles, 1806-'7 Boulard, A. Traito elementaire de bibliographic 8vo, Paris, 1806. Denis, J. M. C. Einleitung in die Bucherkunde. 2d ed., 2 vols. 4to, Vienna, 1795-"6. Dibdin, T. F. Bibliographical Decameron. 3 vols, royal 8vo, London, 1S17. Horne, T. H. An Introduction to the Study of Bibliography. 2 vols. Svo, London, 1814 Mortillaro, V. Studio bibliografico. 2d ed., 8vo, Palermo, 1832. Peignot, E. G. Dictionnaire raisonne de bibliologie (with supplement). 3 vols. Svo, Paris, 1802-4. Petzholot. J. Katechismus der Bibliothekenlehre. 2d ed., 16mo, Leipsic, 1871.
It will readily be seen that to make a universal catalogue, such as would embody the ideal of a bibliographical work by giving the title of every important book ever published in any country, would be literally impossible.
The attempt has nevertheless been made, and some of the results, though exceedingly incomplete when compared with the avowed purpose of the catalogue, are most useful to the bibliographer. Even more valuable, however, are those works which more modestly attempt to give a list of only the leading standard books of the world. We give the titles of a few catalogues compiled with either one or the other of these aims:
Appletons' Library Manual; containing a Catalogue Raisonne of upward of 12,000 of the most important works in every department of knowledge. 8vo, New York, 1847.
Bibliotheca Grenvilliana, by J. T. Payne and II. Foss. Part i., 2 vols. 8vo. London, 1842. Part ii., 8vo. 1848.
Bohn, H. G. A General Catalogue of Books. 8vo, London, 1841, pp. 2,100.
Commonly known as the "Guinea Catalogue." It has been reprinted in 3 vols.
Brunet, J. C. Manuel du libraire et de l'amateur de livres. Latest ed., 6 vols., Paris, 1860-'65
An extensive and useful work, containing notices of 32,000 separata works.
Dantes, A. Tables biographiques et bibliographiques des sciences, des lettres. et des arts. 8vo. Paris, 1865.
De Bure. G. F. Bibliographie instructive. 7 vols. 8vo, Paris. 1763-'8
Dibdin, T. F. The Library Companion; or, the Young Man's Guide and the Old Man's Comfort in the choice of a Library. Thick 8vo, London. 1824.
Diotionnaire Bibliographique. (Compiled, according to Barbier, by the abbe Du Clos.) 8 vols. 8vo. Paris, 1790.
Ebert, F. A. A General Bibliographical Dictionary, from the German. 4 vols. 8vo, Oxford, 1837
The original edition was published at Leipsic in 1821-'30, in 2 vols. 4to.
Georgi, J. T. Allgemeines europaisches Bucher-Lexikon, 1500-1757. (With supplements.) 8 vols, folio, Leipsic, 1742 -'58.
Meusel, J. G. Bibliotheca Historica. 22 vols, in 11, 8vo, Leipsic, 1782-1804.
Moore Dr. C. II. What to Read and How to Bead. New York, 1871.
Nodier, C. Description raisonnee d'une jolie collection de livres. 8vo, Paris, 1844.
Putnam. G. P., and Perkins, F. B. The Best Reading. 16mo, New York, 1872.
Querard, J. M. Bibliographie generale du XIXe si6cle. Paris. 1863.,
Renouard, A. A. Catalogue de la bibliotheque d'un amateur, avec notes bibliographiques, etc. 4 vols. 8vo, Paris, 1819.
As has already been said, it is more common for a bibliographer to select some special department, collecting or cataloguing the works belonging in some one class of literature. Such dictionaries and catalogues applicable to particular branches of knowledge, and comprising the works published on the subjects discussed, would of themselves constitute a library. In the present article we can only mention a few of the more important.
Atkinson, J. Medical Bibliography. A and B. 8vo, London, 1834.
Backer, A. and A. de. Bibliotheque des ecrivains de la compagnie de Jesus. 6 vols, royal 8vo. Liege, 1853 et seq.
Berard. A. 9. L. Essai bibliographique sur les editions des Elzevirs. 8vo, Paris. 1822.
Blaze, F. H. J. Bibliographie musicale de la France et de Tetranger. 8vo. Paris, 1821.
Bridgeman. R. W. Short View of Legal Bibliography. 8vo, London, 1809.
Camus, A. G. Profession d'avocat. 5th ed., 2 vols. 8vo, Paris, 1832.
An excellent work on jurisprudence and its older bibliography.
Clarke, A. and J. B. B. A Concise View of the Succession of Sacred Literature. 2 vols. 8vo, London, 1830- 32.
Darling. J. Cyclopedia Bibliographica: A Library Manual of Theological and General Literature. 2 vols, royal 8vo, London, 1854-'9
De Morgan, A. Arithmetical Books, from the Invention of Printing to the Present Time. Post 8vo, London, 1847.
Dupin. A M. Manuel des etudiants en droit. 12mo, Paris,
Dupin , A. M. Manuel du droit public ecclesiastique francais. 12md, Paris. 1844.
Containing bibliographical notices of works upon law, Ac.
Duplessis , P. A. G. Bibliographic paremiologique. (Bibliography of Proverbs.) 8vo. Paris, 1847.
Dryander, .1. Catalogus Bibliotheca; Histonco-Naturahs Joscphi Banks. 5 vols. 8vo, London, 1796-1800.
Ellis, H. Catalogue of Books on Angling. 8vo, London,
Elmes. J. General and Bibliographical Dictionary of the Fine Arts. 8vo, London. 1826.
Engelmann . W. Bibliotheca Philologica. (A list of Greek and Latin grammars, dictionaries. &C, published from 1750 to 1852.) 8d ed.. 8vo, Leipasc, 1853. Also, Bibliotheca Me-chanico-Technologlca. 1 vol.; Bibliotheca Scriptorum Clas-Bicorutn, 1 vol.; Medlco-Chlnirglca, 1 vol.; Œconomica, 1 vol.: Veterinarla, l vol.; Zoologica et Palaeontologica, 1 vol.; Blbliothek dor Font- nnd Jagdwissenschaften, 1 vol; Bi-bliothek der Handlungswissenschaft, 1 vol.; Bibliothek der neuem Sprachen, 1 vol
Forbes, J. Manual of Select Medical Bibliography. Royal 8vo, London, 1835.
Horne, T. H. Manual of Biblical Bibliography. 2d ed., 8vo, London. 1846.
HOYER Dr. J.G.von. Literatur der Kriegswissenschaft und Kriegsgeschichte. 12mo, Berlin, 1832-40.
Lalande, J. de. Bibliographic astronomique. 4to, Paris, 1803.
Murhard. F. W. A. Bibliotheca Mathematica. 5 vols. 8vo, Lelpsic, 1797-1805.
Containing the literature of arithmetic, geometry, mechanics, optics, etc,
Oettinger. E. M. Bibliopraphie biographique universelle.
(Dictionary of works relative to the public and private life of celebrated personages.) 2 vols. 4to, Brussels, 1850-'54. Orme. W. Bibliotheca Biblica: A Select List of Books on
Sacred Literature, with notices, etc. 8vo, Edinburgh, 1S24. Percheron, A. Bibliographie entomologique. 2 vols. 8vo,
Paris. 1837. PLOUCQUET, W. G. Literatura Medica Digesta. 4 vols, royal 4to. Tubingen. 1808-'9 Poole, W. F. An Index to Periodical Literature. 8vo, New York. 1 1853
An exceedingly useful book, being a complete key to the contents of 1,600 volumes of standard American and English periodicals.
Roy. C. h. A. Catalogus Bibliothecae Medicae. 5 vols. Svo,
Amsterdam, 1830. TERNAUX-COMPANS, II. Bibliotheque asiatique et africaine. 2 parts. 8vo, Paris. 1841-,2. WALCH, J. G. Bibliotheca Theologica Selecta. 4 vols. 8vo,
Jena, 1757-65 WALCH. J. G. Bibliotheca Patristica, Litterariis Annotationibus instructs. New ed., 8vo, Jena, 1834.
National bibliographies (catalogues of works in the literature of a single nation) are very numerous. Of these also we can only give some of the most useful.
Asher, G. M. Bibliographical and Historical Essay on the Dutch Books and Pamphlets relating to New Netherland 6 pts. small 4to, Amsterdam, 1855, Aspinwall, J. Bibliotheca Americae Septentrionalis. 8vo upon North and South America. 4to, London, 17S9 Dalrymple A. Catalogue of Authors who have written on the Rio de la Plata, etc. 4to, London, 1807. FARIBAULT, B.G. Catalogue des ouvrapes sur l'histotre de l'Amerique. (Especially pertaining to those parts of America formerly in the possession of the French.) 3 pts. 8vo, Quebec, 1837.
Paris, 1820. BIBLIOGRAPHICAL CATALOGUE of Books, Translations of the Scriptures. and other Publications in the Indian Tongues of the united States. 8vo, Washington, 1S49. Biblitheca Americana; or, a Chronological Catalogue of the most curious and interesting Books, Pamphlets etc.
Harrisse, H. Bibliotheca Americana Vetustissima. Royal 8vo, New York, 1866.
Kennet, W. Bibliothecae Americanae Prunordia. 4to, London, 1713.
Ludewig, H. E. The Literature of American Local History; a Bibliographical Essay. 8vo, New York, 1S46.
Meusel, J G. Bibliotheca Historica. Vols. 3 and 10.
Rich, 0. A Catalogue of Books relating principally to America' arranged under the years in which they were printed, from 1500 to 1700. 8vo, London, 1832.
Containing 486 articles.
Rich, O. Bibliotheca Americana Nova, since 1700. 8vo, London, 1835. Rich, O. Supplement. 1701-1800. 8vo, London, 1841.
The Bibliotheca and Supplement contain 2,523 articles.
Rich, O. Bibliotheca Americana Nova. 1801-'44 (with an index). 8vo, London, 1846. Ternaux-Compans, H. Bibliotheque amerieaine. 8vo, Paris, 1836.
Contains the titles of 1,153 works published previous to the year 17C0.
Trubner, N. Bibliographical Guide to American Literature. 12mo, London, 1856.
Warden, D. B. Bibliotheca Americana; being a Choice Collection of American Books, etc. 8vo, Paris, 1840.
Anderson, C. Annals of the English Bible. (Containing a list of the various editions, etc.) 2 vols. 8vo, London, 1S45.
Beloe, William. Anecdotes of Literature and Scarce Books. 8vo, London, 1807-'12.
Bohn. J. Catalogue of an Extensive Collection of English Books. 8vo. London, 1829.
Brydges, S. E. Censura Literaria; containing Titles, Abstracts, and Opinions of old English Books. 10 vols. 8vo, London, 1816.
Brydges, S. E. The British Bibliographer. 4 vols. 8vo, London, 1810-'14.
Brydges, S. E. Restitute; or. Titles, Extracts, and Characters of Old Books in English Literature, revised. 4 vols. 8vo, London, 1814-'16.
Collier, J. P. Bibliographical and Critical Account of the Rarest Books in the English Language. 2 vols., London, 1865; 4 vols.. New York, 1866.
Cotton, H. Editions of the Bible and Parts thereof in English. 2d ed.. 8vo, Oxford, 1852.
Griffith, A. F. Bibliotheca Anglo-Poetica; or. a Descriptive Catalogue of a rare and rich Collection of Early English Poetry. 8vo, London, 1815.
Hume, A. The Learned Societies and Printing Clubs of the United Kingdom (with lists of their publications, &c). 2d ed., post 8vo, London, 1853.
Lowndes, W. T. The Bibliographer's Manual of English Literature. New ed., 6 vols, in 11 parts, Bohn, London. 1857-'64.
Macray, W. D. A Manual of British Historians to A. D. 1600. 8vo, London, 1845.
Reid, J. Bibliotheca Scoto-Celtica; or, an Account of all the Books which have been published in the Gaelic Language. 8vo, London, 1832.
Savage. J. The Librarian; being an Account of Scarce, Valuable, and Useful English Books. 8 vols. 8vo, London, 1809-'12.
Smith. J. R. A Bibliographical List of all Works illustrating the Provincial Dialects of England. 8vo. London. 1846.
Stevens, H. Catalogue of my English Library. Post 8vo, London, 1S58.
Giving a select list of 5,751 volumes.
Upcott, W. Bibliographv of Works on British Topography.
8 vols. 8vo, London, 1818. Walpole, II. Catalogue of Royal and Noble Authors of England; enlarged by Park. 5 vols. 8vo, London, 1806. Wright, T. Biographia Britannica Literaria. Anglo-Saxon and Norman Periods. (With lists of works, etc.) 2 vols.
8vo, London, 1842-'6. Watt, R. Bibliotheca Britannica; or, a General Index of British and Foreign Literature. 4 vols. 4to, Edinburgh, 1820.
Vols, i. and ii., alphabetical; vols. iii. and iv., Index.
Asseltneatt, C. Bibliographie romantique. (Anecdotic catalogue of standard modern French romance.) 8vo, Paris, 1867; revised and enlarged ed., 1872.
Bossange, H. Ma bibliotheque francaise. Post 8vo, Paris, 1865.
Giving a select list of about 7,000 volumes of the best editions of standard French authors. Bossange also published in 1845 a large octavo volume of foreign books, mostly French, arranged according to subjects, with prices, a general index, etc He has since published two supplement; .
Desessarts, N. L. Les siecles litteraires de la France. (Bibliographical dictionary of French writers to the end of the 18th century, with supplements.) 7 vol9. 8vo, Paris, 1800-3.
Dictionnaire biographique et bibliographique des predica-teurs et sermonnaires francais, par l'Abbe de la P. 8vo, Paris, 1824.
Giraui.t de Saint-Fargeau, A. Bibliographie historique et topographique de la France. 4to, Paris, 1845.
Gonan, P. M. Bibliographie historique de la ville de Lyon pendant la revolution francaise. 8vo, Lyons, 1845.
Lelong. J. Bibliotheque historique de la France. 5 vols, folio, Paris, 1768-'78.
Containing 50,100 articles, 9 indexes, and a table of anonymous authors.
Lorenz. O. Catalogue general de la librairie francaise. 1840-'65. 4 vols., Paris, 1871.
Querard, J. M. La France litteraire, ou Dictionnaire bibliographique, etc. (18th and 19th centuries.) 12 vols. 8vo, Paris, 1827-,64.
Querard, J. M. La litterature francaise contemporaine, 1827-,49. (Commenced by Querard, and continued by others.) 6 vols. 8vo, Paris, 1842-'57.
Querard, J. M. Les supercheries litteraires devoilees, Ga-leries des auteurs apocryphes, supposes, deguises, etc, de la litterature francaise. 4 vols. 8vo, Paris, 1847-52.
Brunet's Manuel du libraire, before mentioned, although a general work, is very rich in French bibliography.
Asher, A. A Bibliographical Essay on the Scriptores Rerum Germanicarum. 4to, London and Berlin, 1S43.
Buckner, R. Bibliographisches Handbuch der deutschen dramatischen Literatur. 4to, Berlin, 1837.
Engelmann. W. Bibliotheca Geographica. 2 vols. 8vo, Leipsic, 1858.
A classified catalogue of all the works on geography and travels published in Germany, from the middle of the 14th century down to 1856, with prices, index, Ac.
Engelmann, W. Bibliothek der schonen Wissenschaften. (A list of German romances, plavs, and poems, published from 1750 to 1S45.) 2 vols. 8vo, Leipsic. 1837-46.
Ersch, J. S. Handbuch der deutschen Literatur. 2d ed., 4 vols. 8vo, Leipsic, 1822-'45.
A classed catalogue of all the books published in Germany from the middle of the 18th century.
Heinsius, W. Allgemeines Bucherlexikon. (With five supplements.) 13 vols. 4to, Leipsic, 1812-'49.
An alphabetical catalogue of all the books published in Germany, from 1700 to 1846, with sizes, prices, and publishers' names.
Julius, N. H. Bibliotheca Germano-Glottica. 8vo, Hamburg, 1817.
Kayser, C. G. Yollstandiges Bucher-Lexikon, etc. (With three supplements.) 13 vols. 4to, Leipsic, 1834-,53.
An alphabetical catalogue, like that of Heinsius, of all books, etc, published from 1700 to 1852.
Schwar, G. Wegweiser durch die Literatur der Deutschen. Ein Handbuch fur Laien. Herausgegeben von Gustav Schwab und Karl Klupfel. 2d ed., 8vo, Leipsic, 1847.
An indispensable guide in the formation of a select German library.
Taylor, W. Historic Survey of German Poetry. 3 vols.
8vo, London, 1828-'30. Thimm. F. L. J. The Literature of Germany, from its earliest period. (With bibliographical notes, etc.) 12mo, London, 1844.
Ebert's "General Bibliographical Dictionary," before mentioned, is especially rich in early German literature.
Bibliografia, od elenco ragionato delle opere contenute nella collezione de' classici italiani. 8vo, Milan. 1814.
Bibliografia dei romanzi e poemi cavallereschi italiani. (By G. de' Conti Melzi.) 2d ed., 8vo, Milan, 1838.
Brydges, S. E. Res Literariae, bibliographical and critical.
(Principally upon Italian literature.) 3 vols. 8vo, Naples, Rome, and Geneva, 1821-2. Cantu, L L'Italia scientifica contemporanea. 8vo, Milan, 1844. Fontanini, G. Biblioteca dell' eloquenza italiana, con le annotazioni del Signor Apostolo Zeno. 2 vols. 4to, Parma, 1803-'4.
An index to this last edition was published in 1811.
Gamba. B. Delle novelle italiane in prosa bibliografia. 2d ed., 8vo, Florence, 1835.
A detailed account of the works of the Italian novelists.
Gamba da Bassano, B. Serie dei testi di lingua. 4th ed. royal Svo, Venice, 1839.
A general Italian bibliographical dictionary, with copious notes and indexes.
Haym, N. F. Biblioteca italiana. osia notizia de' libri rari italiani. New ed., 2 vols., 4to Milan, 1771-'2.
Antonio, N. Bibliotheca Hispana Nova, ab anno 1500 ad annum 1684. New ed., 2 vols, folio. Madrid, 1783-8.
BARBOSA-MAcnADO. D. Bibliotheca Lusitana Critica et Chro-nologica. 4 vols, folio, Lisbon, 1741-'59.
Bentkowskl, F. Historya literatury polskiej. (History of Polish Literature, exhibited in a list of writings, etc.) 2 vols. 8vo, Warsaw and Wilna. 1814.
Bouterwek, F. History of Spanish and Portuguese Literature, translated by Ross. 2 vols. 8vo, London. 1823.
Casiri, M. Bibliotheca Arabico-Hispana Escurialensis. 2 vols, folio, Madrid, 1760-'70
Castro, J. R. de. Biblioteca Espanola. 2 vols, folio, Madrid, 178l-'6.
Nyerup, R. Almindeligt Literaturlexicon for Danmark, etc. 2 vols. 4to, Copenhagen, 1820.
Otto, F. History of Russian Literature, with a Lexicon of Russian Authors. Svo, Oxford, 1839. Recke und Napiersky. Allgemeines Schriftsteller und Gelehrten-Lexikon der Provinzen Livland. Esthland, und Kurland. 4 vols, thick 8vo. Mitau. 1827-32. Salva, V. Catalogue of Spanish and Portuguese Books, with bibliographical remarks. 2 vols. 8vo. London. 1826-'7. Warmiioltz, C. G. Bibliotheca Historica Sueco-Gothica. 15 vols. 8vo, Stockholm, 1782-1817.
Pages, L. Bibliographie japonaise, ou catalogue des ouvrages relatifs au Japon. 4to. Paris, 1871. Bibliotheca Hispano-Americana. 16mo, London, 1S71.
In most of these countries periodical catalogues of all current publications, critical journals, weekly trade circulars, etc, have long been published, forming collectively valuable sources of information.