Do you have Bibliomania?

Bibliomania from Booklust click through to go to her site.

I saw Reese tweet a link that said Bibliomania was an actual disease. I clicked on over to the Wikepedia page. and was generally shocked that this really is an actual psychology based finding and that omfg I can haz the Bibliomania!

First let me start with I have OCD for real, so obsessive compulsive behaviors towards objects I love or am interested in seem to be a given. Especially when I come off my meds (I do that a lot). I realized that the symptoms listed for Bibliomania are prominent when I am not taking my happy pills.

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.

I have to admit to buying multiple copies of the same book, and hoarding to the point of my 18 month old is almost surely not safe during the event of an earthquake haha. But without knowing it I have been trying to combat my Bibliomania by sending tons of books to other bloggers or having huge contests. So if you have Bibliomania be not afraid there are ways to combat it.

Bibliomania is not to be confused with bibliophilia, which is the usual love of books and is not considered a clinical psychological disorder.
Other abnormal behaviours involving books include book-eating (bibliophagy), compulsive book-stealing (bibliokleptomania), and book-burying (bibliotaphy).

At least I haven’t self diagnosed myself with Bibliophagy or Bibliotaphy. Okay I may commit bibliotaphy with the Twilight Saga.

People with bibliomania

Stephen Blumberg, who was convicted of stealing $5.3 million worth of books
Thomas Phillipps[2] (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.
Rev. W.F. Whitcher[3] was a 19th century Methodist pastor who, after having stolen and rebound rare books, would assert they were rare “finds” from local booksellers.

Fictional characters
Don Quixote is perhaps the most famous fictional bibliomaniac. His love of books drives him insane, and serves as the impetus for his subsequent adventures.

So do you have Bibliomania? Are you a hoarder?

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13 Responses so far

  1. Gravatar

    I don’t, actually. I do love love love books but I read all the ones I buy and don’t really see the purpose to having multiple copies or editions of the same book (unless there’s a good reason for it, like maybe one is a much-older edition someone gave you and the other DOESN’T HAVE PAGES FALLING OUT, lol).

  2. Gravatar

    Omigosh, I don’t have multiple copies of books but heck that might not be true in a few months. I used to think of my book-buying habits as shopaholic type issue but I really am hoarding books at this point -_- I have a huge stack waiting to be read and yet I am still placing orders worth triple digits.

  3. Gravatar

    I definitely have bibliomania. I have a library of 1500+ books many of which I haven’t read, and I cannot stop buying new books. Arguments with my husband over my books are relatively frequent; although he’s more bemused than angry. There are worse habits to have though. :)

  4. Gravatar

    Phew! I think I’m OK. I love giving books away and I don’t need to own every book in the book store. :-)

    I’m surprised it’s an actual disease!

  5. Gravatar

    Whoa! I had no idea that was an actual disease!
    I wouldn’t say I have bibliomania. I don’t (usually) buy multiple copies of books. And up until about two years ago, I used to donate all my books to the library upon finishing them! (Thus my collection is still fairly average-sized)
    So I think I’m safe for now.

  6. Gravatar

    Yep, I’ve got it and I must not let my husband read this. He may have me committed!

  7. Gravatar

    I think I have just a touch of bibliomania. I have over 1000 books, not including ARCs. And I do have multiple editions of some books, like To Kill A Mockingbird, The Once And Future King, and Jane Eyre. All important books to me.

    However, I combat my bibliomania by not hanging onto ARCs. I do try to get rid of some books that I wasn’t ‘in love’ with. HOWEVER, I think it’s nice to have my own little library.

  8. Gravatar

    This is hysterical! I had no idea it was an actual thing :) I think I’m ok since I only have one copy of each book I read … but I am quickly losing room for all of those books I keep acquiring!

  9. Gravatar

    I’m right there with you! When I cleaned my library I found multiple copies of quite a few books. It’s astonishing – especially since I have a spreadsheet that I keep with me to use when buying books. I really NEED help!!

  10. Gravatar

    I had no idea this was a disease! I may have more than one copy of a book…but as they’re in different formats they don’t count, right?

    The longer I blog the worse my collection becomes, so I may have this problem, eventually, but for now I consider myself safe. But I will store these definitions just in case, to remind me of what might happen if I’m not too careful!

  11. Gravatar

    I don’t have bibliomania but I am definitely a bibliophile! Bibliomania would definitely be possible if I had more money. Let’s just be real.

  12. Gravatar

    No, I’m not. I’m actually the other extreme, a purger.

  13. Gravatar

    i think my friend has this condition. He has stacks of newspaper and magazines that date back from 1980s. They have literally occupied their bedroom. They have frequent fights with his wife, she’s threatening to leave if newspapers and magazines will replace her from their matrimonial bed. He also buys books that he never reads claiming he is doing so for their children. This guy needs help!

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