Is that mermaid holding a mirror? No, and yes. The lower border of the January calendar page from this fifteenth-century illuminated Book of Hours contains a Siren, who is holding a mirror. What is a Siren? Why it is in this Book of Hours? Learn more in this New Years post.
The Edith Book of Hours from the Lessing J. Rosenwald Collection is the smallest medieval manuscript at the Library of Congress. Created in Paris in the fourteenth century in the style of miniature painter and manuscript illuminator, Jean Pucelle, this tiny book offers researchers an experience like no other in the collection. Recently digitized, the Edith Book of Hours is now available for remote viewing for the first time. This blog post offers observations about the size of this manuscript in the hopes of providing remote researchers with a sense of its physical presence.
The Library of Congress has several important works by the printmaker, painter, and art theorist, Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528), including his famous engraving, Melencolia I (1514), and his Treatise on Measurement (1525).
The Dim Gray Bar Press was founded by Barry Magid and produced a number of monographs, broadsides, and ephemera during its most active years. This blog post touches briefly on the history of the press and highlights some of the materials within the archive.
Among the resources on the Lenape language in the holdings at the Library of Congress are two hymnals, published in 1847 and 1874 respectively. Printed at a time when governmental policies in Canada and the United States were actively attempting to destroy tribal languages, these hymnals provided a way for Lenape communities to remain connected to their language even amongst attempted erasure. The Halfmoon hymnal includes new translations into Munsee, a Lenape language that is rarely the focus of such linguistic preservation. Guest post by Meg Nicholas, Folklife Specialist, American Folklife Center.
In this post Haim Gottschalk, Hebraica-Judaica Cataloging Librarian for the Israel and Judaica Section of the Asian and Middle Eastern Division at the Library of Congress, writes about the provenance of two Hebraic items in the Rare Book and Special Collections Division.
November 2023 marks the 400th anniversary of the publication of the First Folio of William Shakespeare's plays. The Library of Congress is fortunate to own two copies of the First Folio in the Rare Book and Special Collections Division. One copy is a little unusual.
This post explores a set of mysterious manuscript volumes in the Harry Houdini Collection. These manuscripts were written by Frederick Hockley, noted participant in the British Occult Revival of the late 19th century, and they contain the results of his experiments with the art of crystal-gazing.