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The Fagels and their library

The Fagel Collection in Trinity College Dublin is the family library of an important political dynasty in the early modern Netherlands. The collection was started by François Fagel the Eldest …

Taking notes

In the last step we looked at different ways of annotating a book. Just as people used multiple methods of annotation, so too did they experiment with different ways of …

Annotating books

Examining the annotations in early modern books can give us some fascinating insights into the readers of these books. Take a look at this link to the Archaeology of Reading; …

Looking at prefaces

For the modern reader, the preface, if we notice it at all, is just a few pages at the start of a book that we flick through on our way …

Tracking provenance

This week we are thinking about how early printed books were consumed – not only about how they were read, and by whom, but about how they were bought, collected, …

Books and readers

Welcome to week 3 of this course on the History of the Book in the Early Modern Period. This week we will be exploring how books were read. This gives …

Children’s books

Children’s books are some of the most beautifully illustrated and captivating of all books. Printers had been selling books for children since the beginning of printing: William Caxton sold several …

Bestsellers

We are going to start this week by looking at some of the bestselling books of this period and explain why they became so popular. In the next step, find …

Next week: How books were read

We hope you have enjoyed the second week of our course, and thanks for all of your comments and insight. Next week, we will be exploring how books were read …

Connoisseur collectors

In the early modern period book-ownership was usually a result of three factors: people (and institutions) either inherited books, or had bought them themselves, or had been given them as …

Buying and selling books

In previous steps we looked at just some of the ways books were advertised; but another fascinating part of the book trade in the early modern period is how books …

Book auctions

Here are two very different kinds of auction catalogue. The first dates from relatively early in the history of English auction catalogues: it is the library of a physician, Dr …

Books and censorship

When we think about censorship of books in early modern Europe what immediately comes to mind is the Index. Published by the papacy in 1559, the Index was used to …