The Bibliographical Society was founded in 1892 to promote and encourage study and research in historical, analytical, descriptive and textual bibliography.  Since then its scope has widened to include the making and use of manuscripts, the history of printing, publishing and illustration, the study of bookbinding, and the history of the book, as well as the history of libraries and the study of provenance, readership, and book collecting.

Members’ interests extend to every part of the world and to all periods. Historians, students of literature, humanities scholars in all fields, librarians, and all book lovers, amateurs and professionals, will benefit from the Society’s activities and publications.

Recent Publications

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Richard Goulden, A Biographical Dictionary of  those engaged in the Book Trade in Kent, 1750–1900, Croydon, 2014, 2 vols, 673 pp.

The Bibliographical Society is pleased to be able to provide a searchable online PDF version of this book together with a file of additions and corrections.


A directory of historical book owners, with information about their libraries, and signposts to further reference sources. It currently covers seventeenth-century English owners, with the potential to be expanded.

Published August 2020 by the Bibliographical Society and the Centre for Editing Lives & Letters (UCL).

[Image: Dean John Boys of Canterbury in his study.]

Reconstructing the library of a Cambridge don and Elizabethan bishop

London: The Bibliographical Society, 2017. xxix + 493 pp; 110 colour illustrations.

ISBN: 978 0 948170 24 9

Price £50 (members £33) + p&p.

By Christopher D. Cook,
with bookbinding descriptions by Mirjam M. Foot.

London: The Bibliographical Society, 2013. 185pp; 23 colour illustrations.

ISBN: 978 0 948170 23 9
Price £45.00 (members' price £30.00) + p&p.

The Bibliographical Society in conjunction with the University of Toronto announced in July 2012 the publication of an important new online reference work for book history. The British Armorial Bindings Database, begun by John Morris and continued by Philip Oldfield, is now available on the web at

Published by the Bibliographical Society, the Printing Historical Society, and Oak Knoll Press, 2010.

London: The Bibliographical Society and The British Library, 2004.

328 pages, 8 colour illustrations and 101 B&W illustrations, 244 x 168 mm, hardback, 2004.
ISBN: 0 712348 27 1.

London: The Bibliographical Society, 2004.
Buckram, royal octavo, 490 p., with 42 illustrations.
ISBN: 0948170 13 1. £60.00.

London: The Bibliographical Society and The British Library, 2002.
128 pages, 244 x 160 mm; 4 colour, 80 black and white illustrations.  (£12.00 to members of the Bibliographical Society).
ISBN 0 948170 12 3. £18.00.

A reprint of E Gordon Duff, Fifteenth Century English Books: A Bibliography of Books and Documents printed in England and of Books for the English Market printed Abroad, with supplementary material compiled by Dr Lotte Hellinga.