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Rare Books and Special Collections

This guide provides an overview of the rare books at UNCC and highlights some unique resources


Call Number: AP2 .P69

Hugh Hefner created the magazine Playboy in 1953 after working as promotion copywriter at Esquire. The first issue came out that December with Marilyn Monroe on the cover. Over the years, the magazine also produced interviews with public figures, such as, Muhammad Ali, Fidel Castro, Steve Jobs, and President Jimmy Carter. Hefner's daughter, Christie, was named chief operating director in 1984, then took over as chairwoman and chief executive in 1988. The companies logo, a bunny wearing a bow tie, continues to be used and recognized worldwide. 

UNCC houses multiple issues from 1965 to 1977.


Poetica Erotica

Call Number: PN6110.L6 S6 1927

Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse was edited by T.R (Thomas Robert) Smith. It contains poems from Lord Byron, T.S Elliot, Ovid, Rudyard Kipling, Sir Walter Raleigh, and more. 

This edition was created in 1927 and is numbered 94 out of 1,250. 

The Gifted Venus

Call Number: NE1325.K3 A44 1980

This book from 1980 features both English and Japanese text, as well as erotic illustrations by Katsushika Hokusai. Born in 1760 in what is now Tokyo, Hokusai is known for his piece The Great Wave off Kanagawa. 


Manual of Classical Erotology (De figuris Veneris)

Call Number: HQ462 .F5713

De Figuris Veneris is an anthology of ancient Greek and Roman writings on erotic topics. It was originally published in Latin and Greek by Friedrich Karl Forberg in 1824. This copy is one of only a hundred copies translated by Viscount Julian Smithson and privately printed in 1884 for him and his friends. 


  • Biography for Friedrich Karl Forberg from Encyclopedia Britannica