It’s official: the youngest professional antiquarian booksellers in the world are fifteen boys aged between ten and thirteen from Papplewick Preparatory School, Ascot England.
The Bibliomaniacs was founded in 2009 by the Papplewick director of studies, Jonathan Cooper, a former Sotheby’s man who is also the rare book consultant at Brasenose College, Oxford. The group meets every Thursday to discuss the goings-on of the book world and take trips to libraries, booksellers and auction houses across the country. In 2016 they were officially elected members of the PBFA and have exhibited at the London International Premier Book Fair every year since. You can keep up with their activities via their active blog.
The website is www.thebibliomaniacs.co.uk, a pretty slick affair that lists all the catalogues they’ve done. These include the folllowing:
Style and Beauty: The Library of Jane, Lady Abdy - part of an on-going series.
Travel and Adventure - Featuring a spectacular seventeenth century engraved city view, a rare eighteenth century “history of the world” in evocative original binding; a remarkable collection of bookmarks; two books formerly of Somerville College Oxford; a signed copy of Edmund Hillary’s account of his ascent of Everest; some Edwardian adventure stories in pictorial cloth bindings and a book from a Prime Minister’s collection.
"All Creatures Great and Small" - the first catalogue from Bibliomaniacs aged 11 and under.
The older trade will have to watch out once the lads get past Latin vocab.