Mss to go online at Manchester

A rather useless story at the BBC News Site.  Apparently the John Rylands Library — winner of this month’s Bloodsucker Award — are going to digitise some mss and place them online. 

Obviously any digitisation is welcome.  But only two cheers, unless they do the lot.  I will investigate as more news emerges.

Later: A better story at the Guardian.  Apparently they’re not going to do anything readers of this blog will care about; just 40 Middle English manuscripts; stuff like a medieval cookbook.  Rats!

The work, which will be carried out using a state-of-the-art high-definition camera, will begin next month and is due to be completed by late 2009.

Jan Wilkinson, the director of the John Rylands library, said: “The library’s Middle English manuscripts are a research resource of immense significance. Yet the manuscripts are inherently fragile, and until now access to them has been restricted by the lack of digital copies. Digitisation will make them available to everyone.

“For the first time it will be possible to compare our manuscripts directly with other versions of the texts in libraries located across the world, opening up opportunities for new areas of research. We hope that this will be the beginning of a wider digitisation programme, which will unlock the tremendous potential of our medieval manuscripts and printed books for the benefit of the academic community and the wider public.”

Well said, Jan.  Now if only you’d do something about your greedy photographic department…

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