Module Identifier DS36310  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Dr Christopher M Baggs  
Semester Available all semesters  
Other staff Ms Tanya C Rogers  
Pre-Requisite Access to a working rare books collection., DS36210  
Course delivery Other    
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment Essay 2,500 words - weighted 60%   
Semester Assessment A quasi-facsimile transcription inc. catalogue entry and commentary (1500 word equivalent) - weighted 40% 

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:

Brief description

This is the second of two modules on rare-books librarianship. It provides a more detailed examination of aspects of the specialist field, looking in particular at the development of the printed book in continental Europe in the hand-press period (to approximately 1850) and examining involved in creating descriptive bibliographies and catalogues of early printed materials.
This module will enable students to consider the book as a physical object (typography, bindings, illustration, evidence of ownership) and to understandits place in the modern scholarly context.


The geography of early printing; Elements of page layout in early printed books; Scholar printers of the Renaissance; Christopher Plantin, prince of printers, 1520(?)-1589; The rise of the publisher

Book binding; Management of a bindings collection; Book illustration; Some aids to identification of technique

What do we mean by "bibliography"? Bibliographies and catalogues; Edition, issue and state; Transcription; The collation formula; Ideal copy; Typographical analysis; Page measurements; Analysis of contents; Census of copies; Copy-specific information; Annotation and notes; Setting out a description

The study of handwriting; Provenance information

Types of rare-books catalogue; MARC cataloguing; Copy-specific details; Retro-conversion; Book-in-hand cataloguing; form-based cataloguing; on-line cataloguing; Derived cataloguing; Indexing issues

Policy issues; Describing non-book collections; Museum objects; Photographic materials; Scrapbooks and albums; Printed ephemera; Newspapers; Maps; Sound recordings


The module aims to allow student who have successfully completed module DS36210 Introduction to Rare Books Librarianship to:

Module Skills

Problem_solving Analysis and description of the physical make-up and appearance of early printed books.  
Research skills Several activities involve a researched follow-up to taught examples  
Communication Writing and presentation skills  
Improving own Learning and Performance Implicitly, by building on materials from the Introductory module and development of skills within this module  
Information Technology Use of web-based catalogues and databases; use of web-based conference facilities  
Personal Development and Career planning Use of the library working environment in activities and assignments in a specialist area of library and information studies  
Subject Specific Skills Bibliographical analysis and description, rare-books cataloguing, identification of engraving techniques, provenance research  


This module is at CQFW Level 6