The Anglers' Bible - a terrific read


The Anglers' Bible received a great write-up in Classic Angling just before Christmas:

'Catalogues from 1847 to 1914 might not, at first glance, appear to be a subject that lends itself to much creativity. But even those who know their Ps from the Qs (the book explains why Hardy's chose to number catalogues between 1886 and 1914) will find much in this hefty tome (well-named as it's almost the size of a Bible) to inform and entertain. It's an important part of angling history, too. Until reading this, it had never struck me how Hardy's was really a mail-order business with a tackle outlet tacked on . . . And what works those early catalogues were! Yes, the very first ones were simple lists, but Hardy's supremely smart idea was to bulk them up with articles about fishing: 132 pages by 1888, 180 by 1897 and 400 by 1914 . . . The book refreshingly breaks away from the temptation of recording each new product as it came out, instead batching them into, for example, artificial baits, rods, reels or creels. It doesn't cover everything but pulls out highlights, sets them in context and carries numerous illustrations of relevant or interesting pages . . . This is a terrific read: indeed it is an essential one for anyone who collects Hardy tackle. You won't ever manage to find all those catalogues, but this is the next best thing.'  - Classic Angling