Ian Fenn's Blog

05 Dec 2015

Three Books: US$350.00 and only one didn't disappoint

Library | Ian Fenn

Note: In this blog I report that only one publication actually met my expectations it is that book that is pictured( it isn't a great picture)I recall in a recent edition of the numismatists reading a suggestion that the ANA set up an academic program for numismatics. Its a long over due idea I think. I live in one of the few countries that has a university with a numismatics department. As a result many of the local coin dealers employ numismatists who have Masters degrees and PHDs in numismatics, and the locally published books are of a very high standard. My recent experience with "new" numismatic publications further re-enforces the idea that some form of academic accreditation is needed. I spent approximately US$350.00 ( rough exchange rate) on three books and only one meet my expectations.

20 Jun 2015

Two rare books

Library | Ian Fenn

I assume it's natural that all coin collectors accumulate books relating to their collecting interest. I have a collection of books. Sometimes my small library seems huge to me, and when I can't find information I am looking for it seems barely adequate. As with coins I have a hunt list of books I want. Some references are long out of print; in one case a tatty copy of one book took me 2 years to find. Given that its publication date was 1808 2 years wasn't a surprising length of time.

23 May 2015

The Coinage of Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Italian Somalia.

Coins-World | Ian Fenn

This blog post is part book review and part ramble about two conversation pieces in my collection. Very soon after developing my main collecting interesting I found to understand the central coin of my collection I had to understand the coinage of Ethiopia. I have a number of books on Ethiopia, its history; both social and economic, in my small personal library. All are useful but, from a collecting perspective, there is one book that is a must own for Ethiopian Coinage: Dennis Gill's "The Coinage of Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Italian Somalia" Self-published 1991, ISBN 0 9627503 0 1. This book is, as far as I know the only numismatic book covering Modern (predominantly 19th and 20th century) Ethiopia coins. If you're a foreign coin collector it's a book well worth looking out for. I went hunting for this book, and ended up paying more than was necessary for it. From memory I paid US$200.00. When I got the book I really appreciated the original authors invoice being included showing I had paid ten times the original sale price. Soon after purchasing it (about 8 years ago) another collector told me I could have written to the author and got it considerably cheaper. I have no idea if that is still possible; Dennis Gill in the book lists his address as follows:

06 May 2015

Book Review: Three books on macro photography

Coins | Ian Fenn

I recall years ago being fascinated by the technical discussions of other collectors on how best to photograph their coins. At that time I used a flatbed scanner, I progressed to a point and shot then a DSLR and now I am firmly rooted in the 21st century with a mirror less camera. My coin photography took a huge leap when I attended summer seminar in 2013. In the first week I attended the basic coin photography class. In that seminar I was provided with Mark Goodman's "Numismatic Photography" I recently purchased two more books on macro Photography Enrico Savazzi's "Digital Photography for Science" and Lester Lefkowitz's "the Manual of Close up Photography"

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