[Provenienz] Neue Einbanddatenbank: Mainz incunable binding at the Folger Shakespeare Library

Jim Kuhn JKuhn at FOLGER.edu
Do Jun 14 18:29:26 CEST 2012

Dear Colleagues:

Many thanks for your interest in and comments on our new resource, the Folger Bindings Image Database (http://luna.folger.edu/luna/servlet/BINDINGS~1~1). I am copying this response to Frank Mowery and Rachel Bartgis, our two staff members who have been working on these images and descriptions for possible follow-up.

In response to A. Otterman and M. Hulvey: Thank you for the correction! Like many of the items in this database, the "M with crown" binding you are referring to (images: http://luna.folger.edu/luna/servlet/s/k83r24; bibliographic record: http://shakespeare.folger.edu/cgi-bin/Pwebrecon.cgi?BBID=90244) was first described in a 1992 exhibition catalog, "Fine and historic bookbindings from the Folger Shakespeare Library". The attribution now in the database has not been updated since 1992. We would welcome additional corrections of attributions, or of any other kind.

In response to some of P. Needham's points:

1)      In the Folger description, Kyriss is cited, but in a confusing way. It saves us all much tedium if the shops to which Kyriss gave numbers are cited by that number, rather than by his page and plate numbers: in this case, shop K160.
JK: Our "literature" field is populated in the main by text taken directly from the bindings catalog mentioned above. However, fuller citations may be possible in future. At the moment our efforts are aimed at adding new binding descriptions, improving controlled vocabulary access to existing descriptions, replacing images with upgraded versions (and of course, making corrections based on input by the community).

2)      Likewise in the Folger description, the edition is identified only by its shelfmark, INC J467. But for the outside world at which the Folger website is aimed, it is extremely useful to cite incunables by a standard reference. In the case of this work, Goff J-518 and/or GW 7597. I am continually amazed at how many American libraries, when cataloguing their incunables, fail to supply Goff numbers. [By the way, the Folger's shelfmark is based on this edition's number in the American census preceding Goff's: Margaret Stillwell's, of 1940.]
JK: As Monique pointed out, our "canonical" bibliographical descriptions reside in our Hamnet catalog. Only brief bibliographical citations accompany binding descriptions here; however, the "Hamnet URL" field links from a binding description to a fuller Hamnet record (when available).

3)      In the Folger description, there is a reference to "printed waste pastedowns". To those acquainted with Mainz shop K160, it will be evident that by far the most probable source of the printed waste is Peter Schoeffer's shop. If it is possible for Folger photographers to capture even a portion of this waste, that would be a useful supplement to their posted images. And if, by chance, this waste is printed one side only, printed side pasted down, that too would be useful information.
JK: Thank you for this request; if we can provide such images we will add them to the database.

4)      Just a reminder to the Folger, and all, that a census of nearly 120 bindings (but not including this Folger example) from shop K160 is included in Lotte Hellinga, "Peter Schoeffer & the Book-Trade in Mainz," in the festschrift for Anthony Hobson, Bookbindings & Other Bibliophily, ed. Dennis E. Rhodes, London, 1994. This enlarges the census in Vera Sack's groundbreaking study of the shop in Archiv f. Gesch. des Buchwesens 13 (1972), 249 sqq.
JK: Thanks, we will add this citation to the bibliography (http://www.folger.edu/Content/Collection/Folger-Bindings-Image-Collection/Bindings-Image-Collection-Bibliography.cfm) that accompanies the database, which runs only about through 1992. Additional resources that could be added to this would be welcome.

Many thanks again to all for your input. It is our hope that by presenting these images and descriptions that we can collectively arrive at more accurate attributions and descriptions, and at clearer connections between institutions that hold related items.

We welcome additional comments, corrections, etc. from you and your colleagues!

with thanks and best regards,

Jim Kuhn
Head of Collection Information Services
Folger Shakespeare Library
201 E Capitol St SE
Washington DC 20003-1004
jkuhn at folger.edu
jckuhn4 at gmail.com

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