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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: John W. Chandler, MD, FACS (University of Washington School of Medicine)
Description: This is the third edition of an annotated catalog of books and graphics, including many rare books, about vision and the eye that are housed at the Medical Library at Washington University School of Medicine.
Purpose: Professor Becker began the collection years ago, and this book updates acquisitions since the previous edition in 1983. The important collection, thanks to this book, becomes a more accessible treasure for all with an interest in the history of ophthalmology, vision, and optics, especially scholars of the history of medicine and ophthalmology.
Audience: The large number of books in the collection authored before 1900 are especially important to historians. Dr. Becker's extraordinary contributions to medicine along with his avid interest in the history of ophthalmology and his support of the Medical School Library have led to the renaming of it in his honor in 1995. It is now the Bernard Becker Medical Library of the Washington University School of Medicine.
Features: The book divides the collection into four areas: rare books, graphics, post-1900 imprints, and indexes. The latter are subdivided into subject, chronological, and geographical indexes. The book has a section of glossy prints depicting the graphics in the collection.
Assessment: This is a book of special interest to libraries and individuals with an interest in medical history, especially the history of ophthalmology and optics. It is a description of unique and important collection.