Review of the Biblissima Summer Course on "Incunabula, from Gutenberg's Invention to the Digital Revolution" (Orléans)

A summer course on "Incunabula, from Gutenberg's Invention to the Digital Revolution" took place in Orléans from 7th to 11th July 2015. Organised by the  Médiathèques d’Orléans, the Centre d’Études Supérieures de la Renaissance and the "Bibliothèques Virtuelles Humanistes" team, the course was offered as part of the project to digitise the Catalogues régionaux des incunables for the Centre-Ouest region (CRIICO), with the support of Biblissima. Fourteen participants, both students and professionals, were selected to improve their knowledge and skills in the description, cataloguing and digitisation of incunabula.

Nineteen speakers and experts gave talks throughout the week, providing the participants with a background in book production in the 15th and 16th centuries and in the description of early printed books at different periods in time before delving into the practical aspects of how to catalogue incunabula (practical sessions). Participants were given a general overview of the challenges of digitising incunabula, with concrete examples taken from the BVH website. Various talks on bookbinding and marks of provenance gave the participants insight into the difficulties of identifying previous owners while also showing the richness of these new fields of study. An introduction to reconstructing historical libraries and a presentation of some of the region's exceptional collections rounded out this summer course in Orléans.

Read the full story of the Orléans summer course on the BVH Hypotheses blog (in French).