Roland-designs , Virginie's blog.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, 19 October 2012

Gamle Norge

    A month or so ago while I was in Tønsberg for some reason or another, I passed by an antique book store.... Of course I went in and had a long look, but at the time I was mostly asking the owner if he had needlework books. I saw this book in the window display, took a quick look through it, made a mental note of the name and left the shop without buying anything.

    Back home I searched the internet and realized it was a rare book, there were plenty of reprints, but an original 1800's copy was hard to find. I searched all my favorite places, Ebay, ETSY, Ruby lane, Alibris, etc.... Finally finding an over priced copy on Ebay, but with 50 $ shipping, plus the tax that would be added to an insured oversea package I gave up hope.

    Then last week, a doctors visit brought me back to Tønsberg and I was so happy to see it still hadn't sold.... so I am now the lucky owner of yet another book....

    The book is the equivalent of a modern day travel guide to Norway, but this one is full of amazing woodcuts, and full of detailed information of the way life was lived in the late 1800's.

    While books from that time period can at time be stuffy, this one makes for enjoyable reading. Lot's of interesting little detail, and if you live in Norway you can identify with a lot of it, and laugh at others. For example the little page I photographed at the bottom of this post... to think that there was a time when Norway was so harsh on foreigners, nowadays it is one of the most liberal countries I know. Of course I mean that in the literal sense of the word, not political.... that is something I unfortunately never took the time to understand. 

    The nature though, is just a wild, and beautiful as ever. 

Printed in 1879

Dedication on the front page

The wild nature of Norway has not changed since the 1880's, but the political and religious feelings of the country certainly have ! If you are a jew, from a different religion, or ethnic background you are more than welcome in Norway.


  1. The typography and illustration is wonderful. Great find! And I agree with you about nature :)