Roger Gaskell: Curriculum Vitae


Blaen Onneu
Crickhowell NP8 1PZ

Date of Birth: 10 July 1952


1989–            Roger Gaskell Rare Books

1981–1989 Pickering & Chatto Ltd, managing director; founding editor of Pickering and Chatto (Publishers) Ltd.

1973–1981 Bernard Quaritch Ltd, London, manager of Science and Medicine Department


Publisher’s editor for the following Pickering Masters series of complete works: Anthony Wrigley, Malthus, Martin Campbell-Kelly, Babbage, Paul H. Barrett and R. B. Freeman Darwin and Michael Hunter, Boyle; assisting Michael Hunter with the publication of the Occasional Papers of the Robert Boyle Project

Committee memberships

Current: Woodblock digitisation and cataloguing project, Plantin-Moretus Museum, Antwerp.

Previous:  Antiquarian Booksellers Association; Trollope Society; Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Library Committee; Friends of Cambridge University Library; Cambridge Bibliographical Society; Bibliographical Society Council.

Publications (in addition to over 100 rare book catalogues, 1973–2020) 

In preparation

– With Patrick Goossens, ‘Three rolling presses in the Plantin-Moretus Museum’

– With Caroline Duroselle Melish: Jean Michel Papillon’s articles on the woodcut in the Encyclopédie and his Traité historique de la gravure en bois (1766).

The Musaeum Harveanum and the Library of the London College of Physicians in 1660.


2019 ‘The Typography and Layout of Vesalius’ De Fabrica as Specified in His Letter to Oporinus’. L’llustrazione 3 (2019): 29–53.

2019 ‘Hanckwitz’s Essay on Engraving and Copper-Plate Printing rediscovered’. Journal of the Printing Historical Society, New Series, 30 (2019): 7–31.

2018 ‘Printing House and Engraving Shop, Part II. Further Thoughts on “Printing and Engraving Shop: A Mysterious Collaboration”.’ The Book Collector 67 (2018): 788–97.

2012 ‘Roger Gaskell in conversation with Sheila Markham’, The Book Collector, Autumn 2012, pp. 408–414.

2005 with Patricia Fara, ‘Selling the Silver: Country House Libraries and the History of Science’, Endeavour 29, 14–19

2004 ‘Printing House and Engraving Shop, a Mysterious Collaboration’, The Book  Collector 53, 213–251

2001 ‘From Collector to Reader: Bern Dibner and History of Science Collections’, in The Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology at 25 Years (Smithsonian Institution)

2000 ‘The Terms of the Trade, Antiquarian Booksellers Association, Handbook 2000–2001 (reprinted with minor revisions 2002–2003 and in subsequent years)

2000 ‘Engraved Book Illustration’, Biblis 10, 41–52.­

1995 ‘Science and Medicine’ in Catherine Porter, Miller’s Collecting Books, pp. 156–163

1990 ‘The Plates of Harvey’s De Motu Cordis, Frankfurt, 1628’, The Book Collector, 39, 205–219

1989 ‘The Errata Leaf of Harvey’s De Motu Cordis, Frankfurt, 1628’, The Book Collector, 38,            60–65

1985 Co-author with Christopher Edwards and Roger McCrow, William Rees-Mogg (ed) How to Buy Rare Books (Phaidon)

Book reviews

2018 The Image of Restoration Science: The Frontispiece to Thomas Sprat’s History of the Royal Society (1667). By Michael Hunter. The Library s7, 19 (2018) 522-523

2017 The fifteenth-century Printing Practices of Johann Zainer, Ulm, 1473-1478, by Claire M. Bolton. The Book Collector, 66 (2017) 852-3

2017 Odontologia. Rare and Important Books in the History of Dentistry. An Illustrated and Annotated Catalogue. By Ove Hagelin and Deborah Coltham. The Book Collector, 66 (2017) 276-7

2016 Printing Colour, 1400–1700: History, Techniques, Functions and Receptions. Ed. By Ad Stijnman and Elizabeth Savage. The Library s7, 17 (2016) 453-461.

2015 Great Books on Horsemanship: Bibliotheca Hippologica Johan Dejager, by Koert van der Horst. The Library s7, 16 (2015) 95-96.

2014 Visual Rhetoric and Early Modern English Literature. By Katherine Acheson. The Library s7, 15 (2014) 357-359.

2013 Picturing the Book of Nature. Image, Text, and Argument in Sixteenth-Century Human Anatomy and Medical Botany. By Sachiko Kusukawa. The Library s7, 14 (2013) 218-220

2013 Engraving and Etching 1400-2000: A History of the Development of Manual Intaglio Printmaking Processes. By Ad Stijnman. The Library s7, 14 (2013) 467-471.

2012 Selling Science in the Age of Newton. Advertising and the Commoditization of Knowledge. By Jeffrey R. Wigelsworth. The Library s7, 13 (2012) 98-99

2012 Lake Konst Ars Medica. The Art of Medical Illustration from the Middle Ages to Lennart Nilsson. Books in the Hagstromer Library on exhibition to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Karolinska Institute. Compiled by Ove Hagelin. The Book Collector  61 (2012) 140-41

2007 A Catalogue of Printed Books in the Wellcome Library. Volume V. Books printed from 1641-1850, S-Z. The Book Collector 56 (2007) 592-599

2008 Kroppen. Konst och Vetenskap. (The Body: Art and Science). Ed. Lena Holger. The Book Collector 57 (2008) 311-313.

2000 Essay review of Thornton and Tully’s Scientific Books, Libraries and Collectors, ed. Andrew Hunter; Medicine, Mortality and the Book Trade, ed. Robin Myers and Michael Harris; Landmarks in Western Science by Peter Whitfield; and Old and Rare Books on Materia Medica in the Library of the Swedish Pharmaceutical Society, by Ove Hagelin. The Book Collector 49 (2000) 612-618. 

1997  One Hundred Books Famous in Medicine. Ed. Hope Mayo, The Book Collector 46 (1997) 458-461.

1993  The Haskell F. Norman Library of Science and Medicine. By Diana H. Hook and Jeremy M. Norman. The Book Collector 42 (1993) 584-587.

1991  Rare and Important Medical Books in the Library of the Swedish Society of Medicine. By Ove Hagelin. The Book Collector 40 (1991) 434-437.

1990 A Catalogue of Seventeenth-century Printed Books in the National Library of Medicine. By Peter Krivatsy. The Book Collector (39) 416-418.

1988 Biobibliography of British Mathematics and its Applications . Part II 1701–1760. by R. V. and P.J. Wallis,  Project for Historical Bibliography, 1986 . The Library, s6, 10 (1988) 368-372.

Conference papers:

2014 With Caroline Duroselle-Melish, ‘Papillon, Diderot and the renaissance of the woodcut in the eighteenth century.’ Printing Historical Society, London.

2014 ‘The argument from design: intentionality and craft practice in renaissance scientific books’ Renaissance Society of America, New York 27–29.

2011 Panel Chair, ‘Transforming the Printed Architectural Treatise’, SHARP, Washington DC.

2010 ‘Designing a Library in 1651: John Webb’s Drawings for the Library of the London College of Physicians’, Material Cultures Conerence, Centre for the History of the Book, Edinburgh. 

2009 ‘Engraving Flamsteed’s Star Charts’, SHARP, Toronto.

2002 ‘The Technology of Illustration: Engravings in Early Modern Natural Philosophy’, History of Science Society, Milwaukee.

1999 ‘The development of the Scientific Book Trade from the Festival Of Britain to the Millenium’, Library Association Rare Books Group, Cambridge.

Lectures and Seminars

2018  ‘How Books Shaped the Universe: The Impact of the Printed Image’. Library of Congress Symposium: Imagining the Extraordinary. Washington, 15-16 March 2018.

2017  ‘Principia xylographica: The scientific woodcut and the discovery of blocks for Newton’s Principia Mathematica‘. Bibliographical Society, 21 November 2017.

2013  ‘A Peculiar Facility for Imagining: Visual Strategies in the in early Royal Society’. Hofer Lecture, Houghton Library, Harvard University, 16 April 2013.

2013, 2014 ‘Developing the Critical Bibliography of Visual Materials’ and ‘Practicing the Critical Bibliography of Visual Materials’, Seminars at the Opening Colloquium for the Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship of Scholars in Critical Bibliography, Rare Book School, University of Virginia.

2012 ‘Science, Illustration and the Royal Society’, Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association Seminar, Senate House, University of London

2012 ‘Incunable illustration’, Masterclass, Cambridge University Library

2011 ‘Architecture for Books: The London College of Physicians and the Seventeenth Century Library’, History of Libraries Research Seminar, Institute of English Studies, University of London.

2008 ‘Star Wars: the Golden Age of the Celestial Atlas.’  Ticknor Society and the History of the Book Seminar, Harvard University.

2007 ‘Star Wars: Mapping the Celestial Frontier’, Linda Hall Library.

2006 ‘Recreating the Harveian Library of the London College of Physicians’, New York Academy of Medicine

2001 ‘From Collector to Reader: Bern Dibner and History of Science Collections’, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC

2000 ‘Printing House and Engraving Shop, a Mysterious Collaboration’, Winship Lecture, Houghton Library, Harvard University

2000 ‘Printing House and Engraving Shop, a  Mysterious Collaboration’, Cambridge Bibliographical Society

1999 ‘Don’t trust Words: the importance of Illustration for the early Royal Society’, New York Public Library

Courses taught

2019 ‘Illustrating Scientific Books in Early Modern Europe’. Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin, 28 Feb–1 March 2019.

2018 ‘The Scientific Image.’ Bodleian Library Summer School. Oxford, 25-29 June 2018.

2016 ‘Image Printing Processes in Book Production their Implications. New York Academy of Medicine, 7-8 April 2016. 

2013 – ‘The Illustrated Scientific Book to 1800’, Rare Book School, University of Virginia, 1 week residential course. 

2006 – 2018 Department of the History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge: undergraduate lecture ‘Books and Libraries’; ‘Primaray sources’, undergraduate seminars; ‘Science in print’, graduate training seminars.


1999 Short Term Bibliographical Fellowship, Clark Library, University of California