Amassing Treasures For All Times: Sir George Grey, colonial bookman and collector
University of Otago Press, $49.95 hb, 351 pp
Bibliomania is a disease that has afflicted men, and occasionally women, in many walks of life. Some of the most famous cases have been extremely wealthy bachelors, like Richard Heber in England and David Scott Mitchell in Australia, whose only interest in life was collecting books and manuscripts. At the other end of the spectrum have been men who were leaders in business, the professions or politics, yet who still had the time, energy and money to amass huge collections. Sir John Ferguson in Australia, John Pierpont Morgan and Henry Huntington in America, William Gladstone in England and Sir George Grey in New Zealand fall into the latter category.