The Collation

Research and Exploration at the Folger

Q & A: Amanda Herbert, Assistant Director for Fellowships Program, Folger Institute

Amanda Herbert recently became an Assistant Director at the Folger Institute, where she directs each aspect of the Folger fellowships program, from managing the applications process to fostering a sense of scholarly community. As part of the Folger Institute team, she’s also involved in current and future digital humanities (DH) initiatives. She has a PhD in history and her first book, Female Alliances: Gender, Identity, and Friendship in Early Modern Britain (Yale University Press, 2014), won the Best Book prize from the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women.… Continue Reading

Honing transcriptions with algorithms and acumen

A question I often hear from paleographers who contribute transcriptions to Early Modern Manuscripts Online (or EMMO) is: What are you going to do with all these transcriptions? It’s a good question—central to the whole project, actually—but it’s also a complicated one. The short answer I usually give goes something like this: We aim to gather multiple independent transcriptions for each digitized page and compare them to create an aggregate transcription which an expert paleographer then checks over for accuracy.… Continue Reading

Don Quixote on an Early Paper Cover

The Folger Shakespeare Library recently acquired a copybook with an intriguing pictorial paper cover, and it is, of course, the subject of the crocodile mystery we posted last week. This cover is made of thick paper (thicker than regular paper but thinner than boards) and is decorated with an engraving depicting Don Quixote mounted on his noble steed Rocinante, accompanied by his faithful servant Sancho Panza.… Continue Reading

“What manner o’thing is your crocodile?” August 2016

As July rapidly draws to a close, we have a pretty new puzzle for readers to ponder. This month’s mystery is about the picture on this paper cover: what is the image about and why is it on this cover? As always, leave your thoughts and guesses in the comments, and we’ll be back next week with the answer.… Continue Reading

Shakespeare the player: a new discovery sheds light on two Folger manuscripts

The reference to a coat of arms belonging to “Shakespeare the Player by Garter” in a manuscript at the Folger, V.a.350, has garnered much attention over the years. Folger MS V.a.350 is currently on loan to the British Library for their exhibition Shakespeare in Ten Acts, and Zoe Wilcox, one of the curators, recently highlighted it in “Shakespeare: Gentleman or Player?,” her post on the British Library’s English and Drama blog.… Continue Reading

The Earliest Recorded Shakespeare in America?

We know that a number of the founding fathers (and mothers) in 18th-century America knew their Shakespeare. John and Abigail Adams frequently quoted from Shakespeare in their letters; Thomas Jefferson recommended reading Shakespeare in a course of private study; and the Folger has a letter dated 1776 from General Charles Lee quoting from Richard III to complain that he is in the dark about the enemy’s intentions and where he should be: “I may be in the North, when as Richard the third says, I should serve my sovereign in the West” (Folger MS Y.c.1374 (1)).… Continue Reading

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