Leman Likes… Reading

Here at Ogier Leman, we love to read. For many of our employees, there is nothing more satisfying than settling into a great tome of a book after a long week. It keeps us sharp and focused in our day-to-day work, and helps us bond with other bookworms at our regular Book Club meetings. We know that reading expands vocabularies and improves written syntax – but did you know, it can also lower blood pressure and alleviate symptoms of depression? Or that readers are more likely to volunteer in their community compared to non-readers?

Read on for quick deep-dive into one of our firm’s favourite hobbies …

  1. Reading increases your ability to empathise

Research has shown that people who read literary fiction stories that explore the inner lives of characters — show a heightened ability to understand the feelings and beliefs of others. Researchers call this ability the “theory of mind,” a set of skills essential for building, navigating, and maintaining social relationships.

  1. Reading can alleviate symptoms of depression

British philosopher Sir Roger Scruton once wrote, “Consolation from imaginary things is not an imaginary consolation.” People with depression often feel isolated and estranged from everyone else. And that’s a feeling books can sometimes lessen.

Reading fiction can allow you to temporarily escape your own world and become swept up in the imagined experiences of the characters. And nonfiction self-help books can teach you strategies that may help you manage symptoms.

  1. Book clubs are historic – the first one took place in 1634

The earliest reported book club seems to have been organized by a religious renegade called Anne Hutchinson, back in 1634 in Massachusetts, United States. Hutchinson was said to have organised a women’s group to examine weekly sermons. The group met while aboard a ship headed to the Massachusetts Bay Colony, whose general assembly condemned the group. Since then, such groups could be used not just for sharing opinions on literature, but as part of a functioning democratic society.

  1. There are around 130 million published books.

Have you ever wondered how many books have been published? It’s believed that there have been around 130 million books published worldwide and of course this number continues to grow. Well-known is which book is the most sold – the Bible. An estimated 5 billion copies of the religious script have been printed.

  1. The most expensive book in the world is ‘the Codex Leicester’.

The Codex Leicester was used by artistic and scientific genius Leonardo da Vinci to collect his writings. It sold for 30.8 million dollars in 1994, making it the most expensive book in the world.


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