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The Library of this Association has now reached about twenty thousand volumes. It has therefore been deemed of first importance to furnish its members with the means of ascertaining, at a glance, all that the library possesses of the works of any known author, as well as all it has pertaining to any given and definite subject, by whomsoever written, and to locate each volume in such a manner that it may be readily ascertained whether the book be on the shelves or loaned out. This want, which was severely felt when the library possessed a much smaller number of books, imperatively demanded a catalogue. In compliance therewith this volume has been compiled.
While the Catalogue has been going through the press a considerable number of volumes has been added.
When possible these have been inserted alphabetically in the body of the work; the balance have been' placed in a Supplement at the end of the Catalogue. Consequently some books are entered under author in the principal vocabulary, under title in the Supplement, and vice versa. All books, however, in the possession of the library on the fifteenth of January, 1871, are fully represented herein.
“A library is not worth anything without a Catalogue; it is a Polyphemus without any eye in his head: and you must front the difficulties, whatever they may be, of making proper catalogues.”—CARLYLE.
“There is no matter connected with the administration of a public library which can vie, in point of importance, with the character and the condition of its catalogues. However liberal its accessibilities, however able its chief, however numerous and well trained its staff, however large and well selected its store of books, it will fall lamentably short of the true standard of a good library, if its catalogues be not well constructed, well kept up with the growth of its collection, and thoroughly at the command of its frequenters.”—EDWARDS.
“I am of opinion that a printed catalogue is a matter of first-rate importance. I think it most desirable to afford to the public, in as short a time, and in as compendious a form as can be effected, a printed catalogue. A manuscript catalogue will not adequately fulfill the objects that are required."-LORD MAHOx (Earl Stanhope).
“Read, and fear not thine own understanding; this book will create a clear one in thee ; and when thou hast considered thy purchase, thou wilt call the price of it a charity to thyself."-SHIRLEY.