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Archive for the Tag 'rare books'

Harvard and National Library of China to Digitize Rare Books

One of the most extensive collections of rare Chinese books outside of China will be digitized and made freely available to scholars worldwide as part of a six-year cooperative project between Harvard College Library (HCL) and the National Library of China (NLC)…

…The first phase, beginning in January 2010, will digitize books from the Song, Yuan and Ming dynasties, which date from about 960 AD to 1644. The second phase, starting in January 2013, will digitize books from the Qing Dynasty, which date from 1644 until 1795.  The collection includes materials which cover an extensive range of subjects, including history, philosophy, drama, belles letters and classics.

For more information, visit Harvard College Library’s article describing the project.

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World Digital Library

The Library of Congress, with the help of UNESCO, recently launched the World Digital Library, an online collection of primary source materials. Contributions have been made by partner institutions in many countries. Content includes, but is not limited to: maps, manuscripts, prints, photographs, architectural drawings, and recordings. The site functions in seven different languages and can be browsed by Place, Time, Topic, Type of Item, and Institution. Browsing results within the Arts & Recreation topic, for example, can then be narrowed by place, time, additional topics, item type, or institution.

Objectives of the World Digital Library include:

  • Promote international and intercultural understanding;
  • Expand the volume and variety of cultural content on the Internet;
  • Provide resources for educators, scholars, and general audiences;
  • Build capacity in partner institutions to narrow the digital divide within and between countries.

Many high-quality images are available for download. Some rare books are also scanned in their entirety and available as PDFs, including this second Augsburg edition of Aesop’s Fables.

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