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Entries / Second-Hand Book Trade (entry)

Second-Hand Book Trade (entry)


Categories / Literature. Book Publishing/Book Selling

SECOND-HAND BOOK TRADE or bouquiniste trade (from the French word bouquin - an old book). From the time of the opening of the book trade in St. Petersburg at the beginning of the 18th century, second-hand books were sold in merchants' shops along with other goods, they could be bought at auctions organised for clearance sale of property. The second-hand book trade separated into an independent branch with the emergence of the private book trade in the 1760s, the term bouquiniste trade appeared in the middle of the 19th century. The Apraksin Dvor became the centre of bouquiniste trade by the middle of the 18th century. Traders did not have shops, books were sold either from the ground ("from the bast") or from an open stand ("from the book stalls"). The first second-hand bookshops appeared in Apraksin Dvor at the end of the 18th century, by the middle of the 19th century their number increased to 20. At the beginning of the 19th century vagrant second-hand book dealers appeared (cool scribes, peddlers, vagrant dealers, dealers in antiquarian goods), some of them with time started to procure their own stalls and stands. At the end of the 18th - beginning of the 19th centuries second-hand books were also sold in book stalls of the Big Merchants' Courts, in shops of V. S. Sopikov, V. A. Plavilshchikov (later the shop of A. F. Smirdin) etc. At that time the second-hand book trade was mostly concentrated in the markets (Andreevsky Market, Sytny Market etc., from the 1860s - in Alexandrovsky Market). Huge stocks of old books were lost in the course of May fires of 1862, after them stalls of second-hand booksellers moved to the centre of the city. The curiosity shop of M. I. Nikolaev was opened on Sadovaya Street near the Imperial Public Library in 1867. In the 1870s, the centre of the second-hand book trade moved to Liteiny Avenue. In 1874, (according to different data, in 1878), I. G. Martynov opened the shop Bouquiniste here, soon the shops of N. V. Solovyev (house 51), I. I. Bazlov (house 32), L. F. Melin (house 65, later house 60), E. К. Gaurtier (house 54) etc. were also housed here. The biggest second-hand book shop in St. Petersburg was the shop of V. I. Klochkov opened in 1885 in house 51 (now house 59 , the shop Bouquiniste). Some second-hand book sellers combined trading with publishing activity: Y. V. Matyushin, N. I. Isaev et al. produced catalogues of second-hand books and so called desiderata (lists of searched rarities) were published. The first catalogue was published in 1880 by M. I. Nikolaev. Over 600 catalogues of rare books were published by V. I. Klochkov. In 1911-16, N. V. Solovyev published the journal Russky Bibliofil (the Russian Bibliophile), he paid close attention to the problems of second-hand book trade. At the beginning of the 20th century shops of A. K. Gomulin (49 Liteiny Avenue) and of M. V. Popov (66 Nevsky Prospect) became famous. In 1917, P. V. Gubar opened the shop Antiques on Liteiny Avenue. In the course of World War I the second-hand book trade suffered difficulties, and after October 1917, it fell into decay but did not stop. In 1918-1922, the shop Book Corner operated on 2/5 Karavannaya Street, in the 1920s, I. S. Solomin opened his trade (57 Liteiny Avenue), and in 1923, he moved to 72 Nevsky Prospect, to the shop Antiques, the second-hand book company Excursionist was located at 47 Liteiny Avenue in 1922-1923. In the 1920s, co-operative second-hand book trade developed: old books, prints, antiques were sold in the bookshop at the House of Arts (Herzen Street, today 14 Bolshaya Morskaya Street). Second-hand book trading was carried on in the shop of the House of Literary Men on 11 Basseinaya Street (today Nekrasova Street), in the book stalls of writers on 51 Liteiny Avenue and on 26 Ofitserskaya Street (today Dekabristov Street), in the shop Academiya (49 Liteiny Avenue, from 1928 - house 53b), in the shop of the Committee for the Popularisation of Art Editions (38 Herzen Street) etc. The second-hand book department was created in the structure of the Petrograd (Leningrad) Department of the State Publishing House in the 1920s to control the second-hand book trade, five shops of the old and stripped-down book were opened (53а Liteiny Avenue, 26 Seventh Line of Vasilievsky Island etc.). The private second-hand book trade of Leningrad was totally nationalized in October 1930; the Department of Antiquarian-Bouquiniste Trade of LenKOGIZ (ABUK) was created in 1934 with the purpose of control over it. The Bouquiniste Department was organised as part of the Union of International Books at the end of the 1920s 2 was the biggest centre for the second-hand book trade where the famous bookdealers F. G. Shilov, A. S. Molchanov, P. N. Martynov et al. worked. The department published approximately 280 bulletins and over 70 catalogues. It was incorporated in the structure of Academic Books in 1936 (26 Seventh Line of Vasilievsky Island, from 1944 to the present day, 57 Liteiny Avenue). All in all five specialized second-hand book shops and a number of second-hand book departments in the shops of New Books worked in Leningrad in 1941. The second-hand book shop on 59 Liteiny Avenue and the shop of the Main North Naval Way on 64 Liteiny Avenue worked in Leningrad in the period of the siege of 1941-44. The second-hand book trade was incorporated in the system of shops of the Leningrad Book in the 1950s. All in all five second-hand book shops functioned in Leningrad in the middle of the 1960s, including specialized shops: the Old Technical Books (2 Zhukovskogo Street), the second-hand book department in the House of Military Books (20 Nevsky Prospect). All in all 15 second-hand book shops and over 60 second-hand book departments in the shops of New Books, including those in the Academic Books, in the Book shop for Writers etc. operated in 1990. From the beginning of the 1990s, a kind of recession in the second-hand book trade became visible due to the reduction of the demand, the assortment of the antiquarian and bouquiniste books sharply reduced. In 2003, five second-hand book shops worked on Liteiny Avenue: the Bouquiniste (house 59), Old technical books (house 64) etc., shops have been preserved on 3 Nevsky Prospect, on 26 Bolshoy Avenue of Vasilievsky Island etc.

References: Шилов Ф. Г. Записки старого книжника. М., 1965; Мартынов П. Н. Полвека в мире книг. Л., 1969; Лавров Н. П. Книжный мир Ленинграда: Крат. справ. читателя. Л., 1985; Букинистическая торговля / Под ред. А. А. Говорова, А. В. Дорошевич. М., 1990; Тараканова О. Л. Антикварная книга. М., 1996.

Y. N. Kruzhnov.

Addresses
7th Line of Vasilievsky Island/Saint Petersburg, city, house 26
Bolshaya Morskaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 14
Bolshaya Morskaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 38
Bolshoy Ave of Vasilievsky Island/Saint Petersburg, city, house 36
Dekabristov St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 26
Karavannaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 2/5
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 59
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 60
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 32
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 65
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 57
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 47
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 64
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 51
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 49
Liteiny Ave/Saint Petersburg, city, house 54
Nekrasova St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 11
Nevsky prospect/Saint Petersburg, city, house 20
Nevsky prospect/Saint Petersburg, city, house 66
Nevsky prospect/Saint Petersburg, city, house 72
Nevsky prospect/Saint Petersburg, city, house 3
Sadovaya St./Saint Petersburg, city
Zhukovskogo Street/Saint Petersburg, city, house 2

Bibliographies
Шилов Ф. Г. Записки старого книжника. М., 1965
Лавров Н. П. Книжный мир Ленинграда: Крат. справ. читателя. Л., 1985
Букинистическая торговля / Под ред. А. А. Говорова, А. В. Дорошевич. М., 1990
Мартынов П. Н. Полвека в мире книг. Л., 1969

The subject Index
Apraksin Yard
Bolshoy Gostiny Dvor