Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Pierpont Morgan Library Offers Manuscript Descriptions Online

One of the most frequently consulted resources in the Reading Room of The Pierpont Morgan Library is a set of binders containing detailed descriptions of the collection of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts. The descriptions, compiled by several generations of curators, often contain information not available elsewhere, such as complete lists of texts and illustrations within individual manuscripts, long discursive notes on provenance, binding, etc., and lengthy bibliographies. Books and articles that have come to the curators' attention since 1989 are cited in separate bibliographies, which are updated regularly.

For many years, this documentation was accessible only in paper form. Now, as part of a six-year, three-million-dollar project to make scholarly information on all the Library's holdings freely available on the Web, users of CORSAIR, the Library's comprehensive online collections catalog, can view and print electronic versions of the descriptions and bibliographies. The material, which is linked to CORSAIR records for individual manuscripts, has been scanned and converted into PDF files to preserve the historical layers of scholarship evident in the annotations and additions.

More information available here