EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates

Known more generally as book plates, ex libris are prints, drawings or watercolors designed by artists to be inserted into the front of books to display ownership. Originally a mark of prestige and status in society, book plates emerged in the fifteenth century and usually bore the owner’s family coat of arms. An interest in ex libris collecting and societies began in the 19th century, by which time it was increasingly common for merchants, scholars and other professionals to commission these works from prominent artists. The compositions were created based on the person’s interests, career and accomplishments and often would include a play on his/her name. Fine book plates continue to be made today by contemporary artists both by commission and as a direct response to the book plate as an art form. Many take their inspiration from various historical ex libris motifs such as Greek myth, momento mori and Don Quixote and incorporate them into their own unique style others imagine their own themes more in line with the Modernist movements such as Symbolism and Abstract Expressionism. Each one lends its own distinct voice to the continuing dialogue and tradition of the ex libris.

 

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Art Nouveau Owl.  Ex Libris for Ida Schur. at Davidson Galleries

Walther Baedeker German (fI. early 20th)

Art Nouveau Owl. Ex Libris for Ida Schur.

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Woodcut
Year: ca. 1900
Signature: Signed in block
Size: 4-1/2 x 2-1/4 inches
Stock Number: 31462
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Geh! Weck ihn nicht auf, seinen wir froh, dass er einmal schl at Davidson Galleries

Franz Van Bayros Austrian (1866-1924)

Geh! Weck ihn nicht auf, seinen wir froh, dass er einmal schl

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching and aquatint
Year: Late 19th - early 20th century
Signature: Signed in the plate
Size: 6-1/8 x 4-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31411c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Woman with Owl.  Ex Libris for Dr. Toni Stichl. at Davidson Galleries

Franz Van Bayros Austrian (1866-1924)

Woman with Owl. Ex Libris for Dr. Toni Stichl.

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching and aquatint
Year: Late 19th - early 20th century
Size: 6-1/8 x 5-3/4 inches
Stock Number: 31386c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Man Followed by Death.  Ex Libris for Dr. Josef Lenze at Davidson Galleries

Karl Blossfield German (1892-1975)

Man Followed by Death. Ex Libris for Dr. Josef Lenze

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1923
Signature: Signed and dated in the plate lower left
Size: 4-1/2 x 3-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31482c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Man with Devil by the Tail. Ex Libris for Dr. Josef Lenze at Davidson Galleries

Karl Blossfield German (1892-1975)

Man with Devil by the Tail. Ex Libris for Dr. Josef Lenze

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching and aquatint
Year: 1922
Signature: Signed and dated in the plate lower left
Size: 5-3/4 x 4-1/4 inches
Stock Number: 31484c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : La Vie est Dans la Femme et dans le Livre (Life is in Women and Books). Ex Libris for Leon Maillard at Davidson Galleries

Henri Boutet French (1851-1919)

La Vie est Dans la Femme et dans le Livre (Life is in Women and Books). Ex Libris for Leon Maillard

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Drypoint
Size: 5-3/8 x 3-3/8 inches
Condition: Toned
Stock Number: 29711c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Ship on Waves.  Ex Libris for Francis Marion Crawford at Davidson Galleries

Henry Brokman American (fl. early 20th century)

Ship on Waves. Ex Libris for Francis Marion Crawford

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Size: 4-3/8 x 2-1/2 inches
Condition: Adhesive residue along top edge verso
Stock Number: 31476c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Skeleton Soldiers.  Ex Libris for G. Sabattini at Davidson Galleries

Sergio Burzi Italian (1901-1954)

Skeleton Soldiers. Ex Libris for G. Sabattini

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Block print
Signature: Signed in block bottom right
Size: 2-3/4 x 3-1/4 inches
Stock Number: 31478c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Art Deco Nude at Davidson Galleries

Nikolay Domashenko Russian (b. 1946)

Art Deco Nude

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Hand-colored etching
Year: 1986
Edition : 11/100
Signature: Signed, dated and numbered in pencil
Size: 4-3/16 x 3 inches
Stock Number: 31358
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Leda and the Swan. Ex Libris for Clotilde at Davidson Galleries

Michel Fingesten Czech/German (1884-1943)

Leda and the Swan. Ex Libris for Clotilde

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Soft-ground intaglio
Year: Early 20th century
Signature: Signed in pencil
Size: 6-1/8 x 6 inches
Stock Number: 31519c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Nunc Mihi Moz Aliis (Today Mine, Soon Somebody Else

Edwin Davis French American (1851-1906)

Nunc Mihi Moz Aliis (Today Mine, Soon Somebody Else's). Ex Libris for Edward Hale Bierstadt

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1894
Signature: Signed in the plate
Size: 2-3/4 x 2 inches
Stock Number: 31407c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Pirate with Books.  Ex Libris for Amy Ivers Truesdell at Davidson Galleries

Frederick Garrison Hall American (1878-1946)

Pirate with Books. Ex Libris for Amy Ivers Truesdell

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Lithograph
Year: 1904
Signature: Signed and dated in the stone
Size: 4 x 2-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31470
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Woman Holding Skull. Ex Libris for Dr. W. Has at Davidson Galleries

Ca. Horn

Woman Holding Skull. Ex Libris for Dr. W. Has

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Woodcut
Year: 2003
Signature: Signed in the block
Size: 3-1/2 x 2-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31379c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Romulus and Remus with the She-Wolf. Ex Libris for Ing Frantisek Sara at Davidson Galleries

L.J. Kaspar

Romulus and Remus with the She-Wolf. Ex Libris for Ing Frantisek Sara

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Woodcut
Year: Early 20th century
Signature: Signed in pencil, initialed in block
Size: 3-1/4 x 4-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31459c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Man with Arms Outstretched. Ex Libris for Gardner E. Bostedo at Davidson Galleries

Rockwell Kent American (1882-1971)

Man with Arms Outstretched. Ex Libris for Gardner E. Bostedo

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Wood engraving
Year: Early-mid 20th century
Size: 4-1/2 x 3-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31393c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Three Nudes Around a Fountain. Ex Libris for Dr. Ernst Schwarz at Davidson Galleries

Alois Kolb Austrian (1875-1942)

Three Nudes Around a Fountain. Ex Libris for Dr. Ernst Schwarz

Series: Ex Libris
Year: Etching. Signed in pencil
Size: 7-3/4 x 3-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 12589
Price: $125

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Two Lovers.  Ex Libris for Kniha Josefa Ficence. at Davidson Galleries

J. Kukavsky

Two Lovers. Ex Libris for Kniha Josefa Ficence.

Series: Ex Libris
Year: Lithograph
Size: 4 x 2-3/4 inches
Stock Number: 31471
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Devil with Books. Ex Libris for K Kroptova at Davidson Galleries

Eugenia Kuznetsova Russian (b. 1921)

Devil with Books. Ex Libris for K Kroptova

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Wood engraving
Size: 4-3/4 x 3-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31466
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : If you read this book to its end, bring it back from where it was lent, otherwise this farmer at Davidson Galleries

Burkhard Mangold Swiss (1873-1930)

If you read this book to its end, bring it back from where it was lent, otherwise this farmer

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Color Lithograph on laid paper
Year: 1906
Signature: Signed in pencil, monogram in stone
Size: 3-3/4 x 2-1/4 inches
Description: Artist stamp on verso, watermarked paper
Stock Number: 31461
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Don Quixote. Ex Libris for Allan McClure at Davidson Galleries

W. Mattony

Don Quixote. Ex Libris for Allan McClure

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Woodcut
Year: 1930
Size: 4 x 3 inches
Stock Number: 31468
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Per Tentar L

Raoul Dal Molin-Ferenzono Italian (1879-1946)

Per Tentar L'Ardua Porta del Mistero (To Attempt the Arduous Door of Mystery). Ex Libris for Gigi Raimondo

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Signature: Signed in pencil, monogram in plate
Size: 5-1/4 x 4 inches
Stock Number: 31487c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Three Workers. Ex Libris for Ernst Riedel at Davidson Galleries

Agnes Miller Parker Scottish (1895-1980)

Three Workers. Ex Libris for Ernst Riedel

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Wood engraving
Year: Before 1918
Signature: Signed in pencil
Size: 2-7/8 x 2-5/8 inches
Stock Number: 12596
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Lilies and Cattails in a Pond.  Ex Libris for Florence M. Hendershot at Davidson Galleries

Ralph M. Pearson American (1883-1958)

Lilies and Cattails in a Pond. Ex Libris for Florence M. Hendershot

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Signature: Signed in plate
Size: 5 x 2-1/8 inches
Stock Number: 17554
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Hawaiiana.  Ex Libris for D.T.F. at Davidson Galleries

Horatio Nelson Poole American (1884-1949)

Hawaiiana. Ex Libris for D.T.F.

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: ca. 1915
Size: 3-7/8 x 3-3/4 inches
Condition: Some foxing, mainly in margins
Stock Number: 31390c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Contemplative Man. Ex Libris for Ebert J. Botts at Davidson Galleries

Horatio Nelson Poole American (1884-1949)

Contemplative Man. Ex Libris for Ebert J. Botts

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Size: 5-1/8 x 3-7/8 inches
Stock Number: 31391c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Artist and Palette. Ex Libris for the artist at Davidson Galleries

Horatio Nelson Poole American (1884-1949)

Artist and Palette. Ex Libris for the artist

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Wood engraving
Year: Early 20th century
Size: 2-3/4 x 2-1/4 inches
Stock Number: 31402c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : And All I Ask Is A Tall Ship And A Star To Steer Her By. Ex Libris for Helen J. Stearns at Davidson Galleries

Horatio Nelson Poole American (1884-1949)

And All I Ask Is A Tall Ship And A Star To Steer Her By. Ex Libris for Helen J. Stearns

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: Early 20th century
Size: 4-1/4 x 2-1/3 inches
Stock Number: 31406c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Ship on a River.  Ex Libris for Musgrave at Davidson Galleries

Horatio Nelson Poole American (1884-1949)

Ship on a River. Ex Libris for Musgrave

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: Early 20th century
Signature: Initialed in the plate
Size: 2-3/4 x 4-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31394c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Construction Site.  Ex Libris for the artist at Davidson Galleries

Max Schnabel German (1903-1986)

Construction Site. Ex Libris for the artist

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 20th century
Size: 2-1/4 x 2-3/4 inches
Stock Number: 12598
Price: $50

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Flores Curat Deus (God Takes Care of the Flowers). Ex Libris for Lord Battersea at Davidson Galleries

Charles William Sherborn British (1831-1912)

Flores Curat Deus (God Takes Care of the Flowers). Ex Libris for Lord Battersea

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1893
Signature: Signed and dated in the plate
Size: 4 x 3 inches
Stock Number: 31414c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Girl with Books, Cat and Unicorn.  Ex Libris for Hannelore Schulze at Davidson Galleries

Elizabeth Voges German

Girl with Books, Cat and Unicorn. Ex Libris for Hannelore Schulze

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Lithograph
Year: ca. 1920
Signature: Monogram in stone
Size: 3-7/8 x 2-7/8 inches
Stock Number: 31463
Price: $45

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Satyr Under Pomegranate Tree.  Ex Libris for Irene Dwen Pace at Davidson Galleries

Elizabeth Voges German

Satyr Under Pomegranate Tree. Ex Libris for Irene Dwen Pace

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Woodcut
Year: ca. 1920
Signature: Monogram in the block
Size: 3-7/8 x 2-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31464
Price: $45

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : The Birth of Venus.  Ex Libris for Ludwig Praesauser at Davidson Galleries

Hans Volkert (1878-?)

The Birth of Venus. Ex Libris for Ludwig Praesauser

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1900
Signature: Signed and dated in plate
Size: 5-1/4 x 3-1/4 inches
Condition: Toned
Stock Number: 12594
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Story Time.  Ex Libris for Theresa Martin at Davidson Galleries

Hans Volkert (1878-?)

Story Time. Ex Libris for Theresa Martin

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1909
Signature: Signed and dated in plate
Size: 5-5/84 x 3-1/8 inches
Stock Number: 12603
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Venus and Cupid.  Ex Libris for Ilse Blumenbach at Davidson Galleries

Hans Volkert (1878-?)

Venus and Cupid. Ex Libris for Ilse Blumenbach

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: Initialed in plate
Size: 3-1/8 x 2-3/4 inches
Stock Number: 12604
Price: $50

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Woman with Basket of Fruit.  Ex Libris for Edith Aulhorn at Davidson Galleries

Hans Volkert (1878-?)

Woman with Basket of Fruit. Ex Libris for Edith Aulhorn

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Signature: Signed in plate
Size: 2-5/8 x 2-1/4 inches
Stock Number: 12607
Price: $50

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Bacchanal.  Ex Libris for Karl Seidel at Davidson Galleries

Hans Volkert (1878-?)

Bacchanal. Ex Libris for Karl Seidel

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Signature: Signed in plate
Size: 2-1/2 x 2-3/8 inches
Stock Number: 12609
Price: $50

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Personifications of Justice and Music with Harvard and Princeton Seals. Ex Libris for Matthew and Helen H. Gault at Davidson Galleries

Dugald Stewart Walker American (1851-1906)

Personifications of Justice and Music with Harvard and Princeton Seals. Ex Libris for Matthew and Helen H. Gault

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1919
Signature: Signed and dated in pencil
Size: 5 x 4 inches
Stock Number: 31408c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Figure with Eclipse.  Ex Libris for Friedrich Leinfellner at Davidson Galleries

Georg Wimmer Austrian (1892-1975)

Figure with Eclipse. Ex Libris for Friedrich Leinfellner

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1940
Size: 2-5/8 x 2-1/2 inches
Condition: Signed in pencil lower right; glued to backing paper at four corners
Stock Number: 31381
Price: $50

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Soaring Eagle at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Soaring Eagle

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Color etching and aquatint
Size: 3-7/8 x 3 inches
Stock Number: 12610
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Nesting Eagle.  Ex Libris for Kurt Willecke at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Nesting Eagle. Ex Libris for Kurt Willecke

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Size: 5-5/8 x 3 inches
Stock Number: 12590
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Nude Woman Behind a Shirt at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Nude Woman Behind a Shirt

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Lithograph
Size: 3-7/8 x 2 inches
Stock Number: 31472
Price: $25

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Two Houses in a Forest.  Ex Libris for Hedy and Ernst Fux at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Two Houses in a Forest. Ex Libris for Hedy and Ernst Fux

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Aquatint
Size: 3-5/8 x 2-1/8 inches
Stock Number: 12611
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Flying Bat.  Ex Libris for Karen and Andreas Stoltenberg at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Flying Bat. Ex Libris for Karen and Andreas Stoltenberg

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Size: 2-11/16 x 2-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31477c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Woman on a Staircase. Ex Libris at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Woman on a Staircase. Ex Libris

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching and aquatint
Size: 3-1/2 x 2-3/8 inches
Condition: Crack in paper along left side of plate mark
Stock Number: 12606
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Nude Man with Rays of Light. Ex Libris for Fritz Born at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Nude Man with Rays of Light. Ex Libris for Fritz Born

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Size: 5 x 2-7/8 inches
Stock Number: 12591
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Skull and Book. Ex Libris for Richard de Winiwarzer at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Skull and Book. Ex Libris for Richard de Winiwarzer

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Woodcut
Size: 1-7/8 x 1-1/2 inches
Stock Number: 31376c
Price: $35

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Monk Reading By Candlelight. Ex Libris for L.N. Flint at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Monk Reading By Candlelight. Ex Libris for L.N. Flint

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Woodcut
Size: 5-1/8 x 3-3/8 inches
Condition: Trimmed to printed area
Stock Number: 31378c
SOLD

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : At Spes Non Fracta (But Hope Is Not Broken).  Ex Libris for the Honourable Charles Hope Weir of Craigiehall & Blackwood, Esq at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

At Spes Non Fracta (But Hope Is Not Broken). Ex Libris for the Honourable Charles Hope Weir of Craigiehall & Blackwood, Esq

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Engraving
Year: 18th century
Size: 4-1/2 x 3 inches
Condition: Some stains in printed area
Stock Number: 31387c
Price: $75

EX LIBRIS: Antique Book Plates : Virtue Consisteth in Action. Ex Libris for George Townsend at Davidson Galleries

Unidentified Artist

Virtue Consisteth in Action. Ex Libris for George Townsend

Series: Ex Libris
Medium: Etching
Year: 1777
Size: 4-3/4 x 3-1/4 inches
Stock Number: 31415c
SOLD