The Collation

Research and Exploration at the Folger

When Past is Prologue: Munro, Malley, and the #IranRevolution

a guest post by Nedda Mehdizadeh I’m currently revising an essay for publication that centers on a Persian-language manuscript I found at the Folger Shakespeare Library while on fellowship in 2017. The catalog entry for the manuscript, S.b. 122, includes information about its ownership and acquisition in the metadata, which is also summarized in its assigned title: “Copy in the hand of Sir Thomas Munro of The Mussulman and the Jew, a Persian MS [manuscript], 1786.”… Continue Reading

An Italian Naturalist in England

Thank you for your guesses. “Aldrovandus” is indeed the first word of the sentence, “Gesner” is the last one. The whole sentence reads: “Aldrovandus does not take things vp pon trust alltogether so much as Gesner:” This transcription was produced by the amazing “Folger Ward Team,” made up of Folger staff and other volunteers, who are transcribing the complete set of Ward’s diaries.… Continue Reading

“What manner o’ thing is your crocodile?”: November 2022

This month crocodile mystery comes from John Ward’s diary, V.a. 291, volume 8, leaf 18v.   Can you decipher the highlighted text especially the first and last words of the sentence? Leave your attempts in the comments below and we’ll be back next week with the answer, and why we were thrilled to see it. (And if you’re among the group of people who have been transcribing John Ward for a while, maybe hold off on your guesses for a few days?)… Continue Reading

Condicions agreed vppon: a 17th century Polish-Turkish treaty

a guest post by Carrol Benner Kindel Introduction The subject manuscript, page 237 of Folger MS V.b.303, is contained within a “collection of political and parliamentary documents” compiled between the middle of the 16th and middle of the 17th centuries. It is a one-page list of conditions (condicions in this manuscript) proposed for an agreement between the Turkish Emperor, Osman II (1618-1622), and the Polish King, Sigismund III (1587-1632) following a war between their empires.… Continue Reading

Postcards Folger Directors Sent Me

a guest post by Stephen Grant Printed on picture side: Nothing Printed on address side: Exhibition Hall, Folger Shakespeare Library Washington, DC       Barcode 0010060380        Photo by J. Ainsworth Written message: March 3, 2022 Steve: This card shows the Great Hall as we rethought it in the late eighties – illuminated strapwork ceiling and architectural features, state-of-the-art casework, solar veil window shades, and curtains fabricated by King Fahd’s draper!Continue Reading

The Fairy King’s Grimoire

A guest post by Alexander D’Agostino I am an artist working with queer histories and images, through performance and visual art. During my Artist Research Fellowship with the Folger, I am creating The Fairy King’s Grimoire: a reimagining of the magic and rituals outlined in Manuscript V.b.26, The Book of Magic with instructions for invoking spirits, etc. while considering needs and beliefs of queer people today.… Continue Reading