Popularized in Europe in the middle ages, bookplates were small, personalized graphics pasted into books to indicate ownership. The practice continued through the 20th century.
Recently, the University of British Columbia (UBC) Library added bookplates from its Rare Books and Special Collections to their ongoing Flickr Commons album. These examples are part of the Thomas Murray Collection. The Canadian book collector Murray’s focus bent towards his home country — its artists and its book owners — and UBC lists, where possible, biographical details of both parties. One by Group of Seven illustrator Thoreau MacDonald depicts a dragonfly soaring over a tree-lined lake. Along with those on Flickr, you can explore 1,095 digitized bookplates on the UBC Library website, with the option to sort by year and visual subject, such as heraldry, ships, and portraits.
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