The Lure of the Key : Knowledge Aquired from Some Thirty-Five Years Collecting, by William Wallace
"Arranged by topics rather than chronologically, the aim of this slender volume with hundreds of beautifully reproduced color images is to demonstrate the fascination with this everyday object. The 500 years covered by this book show keys to have been of infinite design, shape and artistry; workmanship reaching its zenith at the end of the Seventeenth Century....Designed like an art book, this would be a lovely gift for any collector or just to fascinate the idle looker." ― Antiques and Arts
The keys in your pocket right now are probably pretty boring. Mass-produced, stamped out without care, and used without thought, they’re nothing more these days than a tool.
But that hasn’t always been the case—and the large numbers of key collectors the world over know better than anyone. In Lure of the Key, William Wallace draws on more than thirty-five years of collecting keys to offer a richly illustrated history of the key from the Middle Ages to 1900.
Paying particular attention to the incredible innovations and craftsmanship of the period around 1700, the zenith of creative keymaking, Wallace invests his history with a clear sense of the pleasure and excitement of key collecting (or cagophily)—after reading his account, you’ll never take even your dull modern keys for granted again.