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Session Leaders: Hannah Morcos and Angeline Rais (Institute of English Studies, School of Advanced Study)

Studying the provenance of manuscripts and rare books involves a variety of research skills and crosses multiple fields, such as book history, bibliography, palaeography, art history, literary studies, and socio-economic history. Understanding the trajectories of these objects within the context of their trade and the values associated with their exchange can reveal new insights into their reception and use in different periods and geographic spaces.  
The aim of this session is to provide an overview of the state of provenance research with a focus on the European antiquarian book-trade in the early twentieth century. As well as looking at current projects investigating this topic, this session will introduce a methodology combining the use of auction and sale catalogues, institutional archives, and private papers with the material analysis of the books. In addition, it will demonstrate how to exploit online tools available for this multidisciplinary approach and identify training and funding opportunities. Finally, we will illustrate how the study of provenance can engage in broader questions dealing with cultural heritage and have a public impact.

Please note this session will involve small- and large-group discussions and those who register should be able to attend the full session and be prepared to interact with the session leader and the other participants. The initial presentation will be made available as a recording after the session. 


All welcome
This event is free to attend, but booking is required. It will be held online with details about how to join the virtual event being circulated via email to registered attendees 24 hours in advance.