Rose Book-Collecting Prize 2014

The gilt armorial book stamp of Jacques Auguste de Thou (1553-1617), French historian, book collector and president of the Parlement de Paris.

Cambridge University Library is delighted to open this year’s competition for the 2014 Rose Book-Collecting Prize, which offers students the chance to win £500 by building their own book collections.

The Prize was endowed in 2006 and is believed to be the first of its kind offered by any European university. As well as the £500 prize money, the winner will be offered 10 years’ free membership of the Friends of Cambridge University Library. The prize will be awarded in the Easter Term. It has been funded by Professor James Marrow and Dr Emily Rose in honour of Dr Rose’s parents, Daniel and Joanna Rose.

John Pine’s bookplate commemorating George I’s gift to Cambridge of the library of John Moore (1646-1714), Bishop of Ely and one of the greatest book-collectors of his day.

The contest is open to all current undergraduate and graduate students of the University registered for a Cambridge degree. To enter, students should submit a list of their collection together with a short essay, explaining the theme and significance of the collection, by the first day of the Lent full term. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to talk about their collection to the judges.

The judges will make their decision based on the intelligence and originality of the collection, its coherence as a collection, as well as the thought, creativity and persistence demonstrated by the collector and the condition of the books. The monetary value of the collections will not be a factor in determining the winning entry – a coherent collection of paperbacks is a perfectly valid entry.

Norman Waddleton (1916–2008) aimed to collect comprehensively all books with colour-printed illustrations or decorations up to 1893.

In 2013, the prize was won by Chloe Stopa-Hunt (King’s College) for her collection of books and pamphlets relating to Camille Desmoulins.  She described winning the prize as “quite magical”.  Chloe will introduce and showcase the winning collection at a public lecture on 6 November at the University Library – full details can be found here.

Full details of the Rose Book-Collecting Prize and how to enter are available here.

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