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Home > View & Discuss > Nicolas Barker on the forgery of printed documents

Nicolas Barker on the forgery of printed documents

Speaker(s): Nicolas Barker

  • Date recorded: 4 Sep 2014

  • Duration: 52:21

'Deliberate facsimilie begun with the most innocent of motives can turn into forgery if it falls into the wrong hands.'

- Nicolas Barker

About this video

All printing involves some form of copying – but when does printing cease to be reproduction and become the crime of forgery?

In this video, Nicolas Barker explores the murky yet entertaining history of fakes and frauds in book printing. He also discusses contemporary debates about originality, authenticity and copyright.

This Foxcroft Lecture was held on 14 May 2014.


Nicolas Barker has been the editor of The Book Collector since 1965, abetted by an editorial board drawn from rare-book librarianship and the antiquarian book trade.

Nicolas is the author of numerous books and articles about printing, writing and forgery. He is also a sometime publisher and first head of conservation at the British Library. 

The Book Collector was founded in 1952 by Ian Fleming. Its first editor, until his death in 1965, was John Hayward, the friend and muse of TS Eliot.