måndag 7 november 2016

Steampunk persona: Leonidas Tengbom, book collector

I was going to write about one of my new gowns, but something else came out, so instead in this post the Costuming Engineer proudly presents to you Leonidas Ylvar Tengbom, distinguished book collector and conservative steampunk gentleperson!

(I will use "ze" and "hir” as gender neutral pronouns.)

Leonidas Tengblom at the recent bazar in Göteborg, a bit tired after a day of searching for new book treasures.

Leonidas Tengbom lives in a large house in the part of Sweden that is called Bergslagen, where ze lives with hir husband and a pet squirrel called Flogiston (but ze would never admit how fond ze is of the pet - "It just happened to move in when I happened to feed it! I cannot help that Flogi prefer to sit on the armrest of my favourite armchair!") At home, ze prefers to spend most of hir time in hir library, researching odd historical topics or conserving old and fragile books, or taking long walks around the small lakes with hir husband. Hir favourite season is the autumn, and if there had been any people taking walks at the same paths as ze does, they would have seen hir stop frequently to enjoy the smell of moss, fallen leaves or a fir tree in the sun.

As the chairperson of the International Society for the Keeping of Old and Dusty Books, Leonidas Tengbom often get to travel, in search of book or for conferences and work groups. This ze does under much mumbling and grumbling, and always claiming that airships and zeppelins should be avoided (modern contraptions, cannot be trusted! and the steam submarines are even worse!) but for some reasons, ze often ends up with using them anyway, as they after all are a decent bit more comfortable than carriages. At the numerous meetings for other book collectors, keepers and researchers, ze transforms from the quiet reader to the outspoken and social chairperson and researcher for a few days, before going back home to enjoy the quite days at the countryside again.

Recent findings - notebooks from the Köping alchemy group
And finally - a word of advice. If you meet hir, do not ask about hir latest research project unless you are willing to spend quite a while listening! "Oh, currently I am researching the alchemical group that formed around Carl Willhelm Scheele in Köping a few years befor his death! How nice of you to ask! Not many people know that he became active in an alchemical group when he moved to Köping. With his brilliant mind, he soon become an important member, and the group seemed to make progress, but not for long. After a while he and the rest of the group split, over an heated argument about the moral of some of their experimental methods. That is why the group is not known today - without Scheele, the group did not make much progress. Scheele would not let the group publish the findings he had made with them. But, you know, he must have forgiven at least one of the members, because at his death bed, he married the group member Sara Pohl, in order for her to inherit his pharmacy. It seems he wanted her to be able to continue her alchemical work after all! I first found this mentioned in this book that I found when I ... "

Inga kommentarer:

Skicka en kommentar