Antique books are certainly beautiful to look at. More importantly, old books are part of history and are absolutely irreplaceable. They are valuable for their significance, as well as their price tag. We are not the first to note the importance of antique books; group of thieves stole about $2.5 million worth of rare books out of a London warehouse. The books, and thieves, vanished, prompting an international book hunt.
The robbers ran off with about 160 books in total by breaking in through the skylight windows according to The Guardian. Of those rare titles included famous works from Copernicus, Leonardo da Vinci, Isaac Newton, and a copy of Dante‘s The Divine Comedy that dates back to 1569. Investigators are currently looking for any traces of the book thieves or the works themselves in international markets. By placing the works on databases like Artive.org, they will be recorded as stolen to tip off reputable book buyers.
This is not the first time that such thievery has occurred. Several cases of stolen books have come about in the past few years. Altogether, it is estimated that about $500 million of antique books are currently missing, or have been sold (illegally). Unfortunately, there will be no telling if the books will be found in one piece or if they will be taken apart to sell the drawings or engravings will be sold in art markets.
Let’s hope that these books return safe and sound!
Featured image courtesy of The New York Times.