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Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Our First Virtual Rare Books Quiz!

Welcome to our first virtual rare books quiz!  Take a break from studies (and incessant news) - allow yourselves a diversion! 

Take a few moments to answer the questions below, and be entered to win prizes from the UMN bookstore (when it reopens).  

The two most correct entries win, drawing in case of (more than two) ties, prizes $25 each.  The prizes are the usual: hats, mugs, keychains, t-shirts, or some combination.  UMN Law School students only are eligible.

1.  Which noted French Enlightenment philosophe is this an image of?  (Several answers accepted; note the figure is wigless!)

The great etching, by artist Thomas Cornell, is from this book, in our current exhibits. 


2.  The design at bottom here is the printer's device of Baptista de Tortis.  These were common in early printed books, and offered quick recognition and a proud authenticity.  What year, month, day, and city was this book published in?

This volume of Roman law in the collection is an incunable, printed before 1501. (That's a hint, at least.)


3.  What is significant about the book below? (All that apply.)

A.  It is a copy of the first printed edition of Bracton's De Legibus, considered the greatest treatise on (medieval) English law.
B.  It is an early example of the use of Roman type in English law books.
C.  It is a pirated copy, printed without license.
D.  Answers A and B only.
E.  Answers A, B, and C.

Fun fact: the printer of the book, Richard Tottel, spelled his name about a dozen different ways in his works (thanks to my colleague Mike Widener for this observation)! 

4.  A last one, from our Supreme Court Bobblehead collection.  Why is there a cow at the feet of Justice O'Connor, and why are there sheep at the feet of Justice Breyer?  (Short answer will do.)

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