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Bibliomania is an obsessive-compulsive disorder involving the collecting or hoarding of books to the point where social relations or health are damaged. One of several psychological disorders associated with books, bibliomania is characterized by the collecting of books which have no use to the collector nor any great intrinsic value to a genuine book collector. The purchase of multiple copies of the same book and edition and the accumulation of books beyond possible capacity of use or enjoyment are frequent symptoms of bibliomania.

Bibliomania is not to be confused with bibliophily, which is the legitimate love of books and is not considered a clinical psychological disorder.

Other abnormal behaviours involving books include book-eating (bibliophagy), compulsive book-stealing (bibliokleptomania), book-burying (bibliotaphy), book burning (bibliocaust), etc.

Additional recommended knowledge



People with bibliomania

  • Stephen Blumberg
  • Thomas Phillipps[1] (1792-1872) suffered from severe bibliomania. His collection, which at his death contained over 160,000 books and manuscripts, was still being auctioned off over 100 years after his death.

Fictional characters with bibliomania

  • Mel Gibson's character in the movie Conspiracy Theory suffers from triggered bibliomania, a form of mind-control that prompts him to buy a copy of J.D. Salinger's Catcher In The Rye every time he goes outside his apartment. (cf. MK-ULTRA papers, National Security Archives.)
  • Yomiko Readman codename "The Paper" is a character in the anime Read or Die. She is a "paper user" who works for the British Library. She is also a bibliomane, whose apartment is literally stacked floor to ceiling with books. It is stated at one point in R.O.D the TV that she has read "thousands of books in her lifetime" which makes her unusual among bibliomanes, as most collect books because of a psychological problem, and do not actually read any of them.


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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Bibliomania". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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