I am slowly working my way through the set-back described in my last post, one book at a time, one book a day with lots of days without the enthusiasm to manage even this.
A useful distraction has been PJM Marsh's book Beautiful Bookbindings - A Thousand Years of the Bookbinder's Art. Included in the book is the following tale:
In 1911, the London binder Francis Sangorski completed an elaborate, jewelled binding of the Rubaiyat of Omar Kajayyam which was sold to an American collector. The binding was lost when it went down with the RMS Titanic on its voyage home.
In 1932, Stanley Bray, a nephew of Sangorski's business partner, recreated the binding and placed it in a bank vault for safe keeping only to have it destroyed when the bank was bombed during the London blitz.
A third version of the binding was produced by Bray in 1982 and is now housed in the British Library.
The thought of Bray's persistence is just the spur I need to press on.