Revising the Catalogic Record

By Vincent Leung As is well known, written word in the Middle Ages projected the verisimilitude of authority and veracity via the use of ​auctoritates​, personnages and works whose popularity survived centuries with the rubber stamp of intellectual, religious, and governmental institutions. Of course, times have changed. By no means are former sources revered solely …

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Digital Humanities Hands-On Libraries Student Projects

In Pursuit of An Apostle: Comenius, the Janua, and an Unicum

By Lena Zlock Introduction “I cry: sensation!” With these words began our search for what might be an ‘unicum’: the only edition of its kind of Johann Amos Comenius’ Janua linguarum reserata. Ulrich Schäfer, Bibliographischer Berater at the Deutsche Comenius-Gesellschaft first contacted Helen Buchanan of the Bodleian Libraries to enquire about the 1662 copy of …

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Masterclass on Materiality

By Godelinde Gertrude Perk Featured image courtesy of the University of Oxford Development Office This masterclass focused on the materiality of medieval manuscripts, that is, medieval manuscripts as material objects, and their conservation. It explored how manuscripts were made in the Middle Ages and how modern conservators (for instance in the Bodleian Conservation Studio) conserve …

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Treasures of the Taylorian

By Isabelle Riepe A library must not always be just books. Libraries established before the 20th century mostly originated from collections, alongside objects, like porcelain, clocks, furniture, or paintings. Sometimes those also find their way into a newly founded library of the 19th century. The Taylor Institution Library (Taylorian) opened in 1849, following the will of architect Sir Robert …

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Hands-On Palaeography

Lōökîng fõr “g”

By Luise Morawetz and Vincent Leung In the fourth week of our History of the Book methodology module, the topic was palaeography. Dr. Colleen Curran, a researcher at the Faculty of English of the University of Oxford and expert in Insular scripts, took us to the Weston Library’s Visiting Scholar’s Centre to introduce us to …

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Student Projects

A mystery of tragedies: On a quest of tracing translations of Voltaire plays

By Isabelle Riepe The ex libris of the book Trauerspiel by Voltaire suggests it was owned by Theodore Besterman and gifted to the University of Oxford, specifically the Taylor Institution Library. Theodore Besterman founded the Voltaire Foundation, which publishes the definite edition of the complete works of Voltaire and specialises in eighteenth-century scholarship, and bequeathed …

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