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Daily perchings of mind.
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Mar 30, 2019

Where better to start a Saturday morning than in the rare books room on C floor. I especially enjoyed A. Kircher's Turris Babel (1679), Mabillon's De re Diplomatica and Lipsius's military book (the title of which I forget). Most fascinating was a late 16th-century pedagogical book written in Spanish and the Aztec language (via latin alphabet) and published in Mexico(!) to teach indigenous children psalms and other things. I wonder what kind of printing press they were using in the colony, if they made it from scratch or brought the machine over from Spain. I also wonder how and when Princeton acquired so many rare books and manuscripts. And from what I hear, our collection pales in comparison to those at Yale and Harvard, which I look forward to visiting in the near future. With immense purchasing power, the Atlantic doesn't seem to have been an obstacle in amassing an impressive collection.