A good book can enrich a mind, spur a life-changing epiphany, or transport a reader to a minutely detailed universe hatched from an author’s imagination. A good pair of bookends can’t promise all that, but they can sure add a lot of character to a room. Bookends are like punctuation marks on a shelf, proclaiming the importance their owners place on the tomes in between.

Many antique and vintage bookends share a key trait—they're heavy, often made of weighty materials such as wrought iron, ceramic, carved stone, or cast metal. Solid bronze bookends are especially popular and collectible, sometimes resembling small, paired pieces of sculpture rather than utilitarian devices to keep books from sliding off a shelf.

Bronze was a favorite material of Art Deco-era artists and designers, who used everything from female nudes to reproductions of Rodin’s “Thinker” for bookends. From the 1920s through the 1950s, a New Jersey company called Marion Bronze, as well as its predecessor, Pompeian Bronze, was famous for its painted bronze bookends.

Of the ceramic bookends, collectible examples include pieces by Roseville and Rookwood in the United States, and Clarice Cliff and PenDelfin in the U.K. The Roseville bookends from the 1930s shaped like open books, with a pine bough and cone propping open the “book,” are particularly prized.

Metal bookends ranged from hammered copper pieces made by Roycroft craftsmen during the Arts and Crafts period to cast brass animal figures. Then there were the stone bookends, which were sometimes paired with metals (bronze and marble was a typical combination in the 1920 and ’30s) or used solo—onyx and alabaster are just two examples of stones favored by artisans from Mexico to Asia.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Google Book Search

Google Book Search

Want to do one quick search and pull up the mother lode of vintage books? Try Google Book Search, a database filled… [read review or visit site]

Bookscans.com

Bookscans.com

Bruce Black's gallery of paperback book covers from the 1940s and 50s. With help from numerous contributors, he's a… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Antique Pair Of Art Deco Frankart Nude Bookends C.1925 Original, AuthenticatedRare Antique Art Deco Era Owl On Books Old Statue Ronson Bird Sculpture BookendsSculptural Pug Dog Bookends Bronzed Composite Construction - Bigpelican(2) Antique Art Deco Era Bronze Greyhound Whippet Dog Statue Sculpture BookendAntique Art Deco Era Wise Old Owl On Book Bradley & Hubbard Statue Old BookendsAntique Pair Chinese Cinnabar Coated Timber Buddhavista Bookends Marks ChinaAntique Art Nouveau Bookends Statue Figure Figurine Nude Woman Fairy Girl BronzeB. Kliban Cat Ceramic Bookends, Tastesetter Cpy. SigmaCattails & Lilly Pads Mcclelland Barclay 1920's Art Nouveau Solid Brass BookendsAntique Signed Pal Cast Iron Airedale Fox Wire Terrier K9 Dog Doorstop BookendArt Deco 'flapper Girl' Kneeling Nude ~ Bronzart Co 1930's Cast Metal BookendsVintage 30s Chief Rolling Log Bookends Native Navajo Indian Swastika SouthwestWonderful Set Of Frankoma Desert Gold Belgian Horse Bookends - Nice!Vintage Art Deco Frankart Era Bronzed Cast Iron Nude Dancing Lady BookendsArt Nouveau Bookends Hammer Of Thor Bookend By Gentle Giant Studios Limited Edition Book EndAntique Art Deco Era Caricature Style Benjamin Ben Franklin Statue Bust BookendsStar Wars Imperial Seal Bookends By Gentle Giant Studios LimitedAntique Pair Tiffany Studios Rare Dark Bronze Buddha Bookends 1920s Signed Original Tom & Bob Bennett €Wonderful Pr. Solid Brass Eagle Anchor U.s. Naval Academy 1947 Bookends 13 StarsStar Wars Imperial Seal Bookends By Gentle Giant Studios LimitedVintage Ben Seibel ? Mid Century Brass Stirrup Bookends Bradley Hubbard , Cast Iron , Bookends , Too Small For Doorstops ?? ExcellentVintage Art Deco Nude Scarf Dancer Pair Of Bookends Original Paint Cast IronAntique Cast Iron Indian Chief Head Doorstop Old Book End Door Stopper Ornate NrVintage Black Americana Figural Lawn Jockey Bookend Set Painted Metal Excellent1915 Gilt-bronze Cast Iron Owl & Pine Cone Expanding Book Rack By Judd Mfg. Co.Thompson Trophy Bookends National Air Races Aviation Red Bull Race Reno Art DecoArt Deco Woman Dancing In Long Dress 1927 Nuart Creations Bronzed Metal BookendsVintage Mccoy Hunting Dog Setter Bookend Planter Excellent Condition!Sis: Exotic 11" Red & Green Hampton Petrified Wood Bookends!Brass Kangaroo Bookends, Antique Mid-century Home Decor Figurines, Metal AnimalsMonk Reading In His Hood & Robes ~ Armor Bronze 1920's Polychrome Cast BookendsHard To Find 1966 Batman And Robin Bookends No Reserve!Scarce Vintage Lord Of The Rings Arwen Aragorn Makras Signed Sculpture BookendsDon Drumm Sunface BookendsArt Deco Iron Dachshund Expandable Book Rack Bookends Judd & Co. #9780Solid Brass Bookends ~ Indian Chief ~ Whirling Log / Wheel Of Life / SwastikaGladys Brown Dodge Metal South Western Southwestern Bull Cattle Steer BookendsRare Old Pair Of Art Deco White Lenox Porcelain Lady Heads Bookends N/r 29.95Three Sets Of Roycroft BookendsVintage Modernist Art Stainless Steel Bookends 8 Lbs EachGreat Pair Of Hand Hammered Arts & Crafts Galleon / Ship Bookends Mixed MaterialLord Of The Rings The Argonath Bookends2000 Enesco Harry Potter Bookends Sorting Hat Hogwarts School Books #236Antique Art Deco Nouveau Brass Cast Metal Owl Book Ends Sliding Rack # 9821 JuddArt Deco Ronson Chrome Penguin Metal Sculpture Bookend !Antique Parrot Bookends Cast Iron By H. L. Judd Cold Painted #9892 Crisp CastingVintage Mid Century Rosewood Danish Modernist BookendsVintage 1930's American Indian Native Metal Bookends K&o Awaiting The Prey OrigM I Hummel Bookworm Bookends ,nochein Fabrikat, 5 1/2" (1946-48?)Jennings Brothers Bookends Missiles Rockets Bombs J.b. Jb 333 Art Deco MetalwareHome Theater Movie Room Cinema Decorative Set ~new~Vintage Pair Of Chalkware Bookends Two Asian Girl Busts Ester Hunt StyleCaesar Vatican Art Portrait Bust Bookend Elegant Bronze Marble Statue BookshelfJla (justice League America) Bookends From Dc Direct Limited Edition 1049/1150Arab Defender Arab Bedouin Shiek On Horse Book Ends Pompeian Bronze Co. 1925Antique Art Deco Era Great Dane Cold Painted Statue Old Cast Iron Dog BookendsAntique Brass Ncr National Cash Registar Bookends Engineering And Research