By what criterion, of all the books on all the shelves in all the libraries, does one choose a particular book? In the digital world we live in now, is that even a relevant question? For anyone who loves to walk over to the lectern in the library where the monumental OED is sitting, the answer is certainly yes, even if they very much also appreciate other forms of access to OED.
So today we pay tribute to those artisans who, along with calligraphers and paper-makers, keep the world of ideas evolving. How one binds a book could have enormous consequences, so it is surprising to see that the etymology for this word is so modern:
Bookbinding as a fine art.
1876 Encycl. Brit. IV. 42/1 Contemporary masterpieces of French, Italian, and German bibliopegy.
1885 Pall Mall Gaz. 10 Sept. 15 The Exhibition of what is known as bibliopegy.
1958 ‘M. Innes’ Long Farewell 72 Appleby, although hazy about bibliopegy, was quite certain he wasn’t a distinguished student of it.