Virginia Commonwealth University

Make it real.

Archive | Scholarly communications

RSS feed for this section

Communal effort creates access to rare ms.

On Friday afternoon, April 7, Transcribathoners gathered in the lecture hall of Cabell Library. A Transcriba-what? 

Transcribathons are organized by the Folger Shakespeare Library: Think of it as crowd-sourcing to decipher the handwriting of early modern manuscripts. Co-sponsored with the Folger Shakespeare Library, the VCU Department of English, the VCU Humanities Research Center and VCU Libraries, the Transcribathon provided hands-on digital humanities work—moving forward the Folger project to provide readable transcriptions of rare manuscripts in their collections via an open-access database for global access by researchers and students of this pivotal era in history (http://emmo.folger.edu/).

Handwriting from this period followed a variety of forms, including the prominent “Secretary’s Hand,” which may seem to our eyes ornate and often somewhat unreadable. And yet this kind of detective work is extremely popular—especially at VCU, which has the honor of being the only university to host a Transcribathon twice!

her photos are available on the library Flickr site.