Tag Archives: 2011acquisitions

Students and faculty view the new manuscript with Curator of Collections Andy Armacost. Image courtesy Lucas Van Rompay.

My Rubenstein Library: A Newly Acquired Greek Manuscript

In this post Professor Lucas Van Rompay, Chair of the Duke University Department of Religion, explains an exciting new addition to the Rubenstein’s early manuscript collections.  Thanks, Professor Van Rompay!

Recently acquired Greek “Menologion” manuscript, ca. 11th century, Constantinople. Image courtesy Lucas Van Rompay.

The Rubenstein Library recently acquired a fascinating 11th-century Greek manuscript.

With some colleagues and students of the Graduate Program in Religion, we went to see the manuscript on Thursday, October 6, and were greeted by Naomi Nelson, Director of the Rubenstein Library, and J. Andrew Armacost, Head of Collection Development and Curator of Collections.

The new manuscript contains a collection of the lives of saints celebrated in the Greek Orthodox Church during the month of September. It is the first volume of what once must have been a ten-volume set, known as the ‘Menologion’ and covering the entire liturgical year (which begins in September). This particular collection is associated with the name of Symeon Metaphrastes, who in the late 10th century rewrote and collected much of the ancient Greek hagiographical tradition.

While Symeon’s collection became authoritative in the Greek Orthodox Church and is preserved in a great number of manuscripts, the new Duke manuscript stands out for its early date and for the exceptionally fine quality of its script and its lavish execution. It may safely be dated to the middle of the 11th century and must have been produced in Constantinople, from where in the 11th century a number of copies of Symeon’s Menologion were sent to churches and monasteries all over the Byzantine Empire.

Students and faculty view the new manuscript with Curator of Collections Andy Armacost. Image courtesy Lucas Van Rompay.

Until 1960 the manuscript belonged to the library of the Dionysiou Monastery on Mount Athos, from which it was sold, and later sold at auction to the Schoyen Collection, which recently deaccessioned it. It will be part of the Kenneth Willis Clark Collection at Duke, which already contains a great number of very fine Byzantine manuscripts.

Thanks to Andy Armacost, Curator of Collections, for coordinating this post.

10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Ten

Today, we’re wrapping up our celebration of the beginning of a new fiscal year with our last feature on one of the notable items that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012! We’d like to thank Mark Zupan, the Libraries’ graphic designer, and everyone in the Digital Production Center for their help with the images for these posts.

Le Premier [Second] Volume des Plus Excellents Bastiments de France by Jacques Androuet du Cerceau, 1576 and 1579.

A major document of Renaissance Europe, Androuet du Cerceau’s survey of French buildings includes nearly 150 engraved plates.  In two volumes, 36 palaces, castles, and other major buildings are beautifully illustrated by detailed plans and views.  In some cases, the buildings no longer stand or are now vastly different than they appeared in 16th-century France.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

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10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Nine

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

Photo of Gaza from Photographs of the Holy Land

Photographs of the Holy Land: Sinai and Palestine; Lower Egypt, Thebes, and the Pyramids; Upper Egypt and Ethiopia by Francis Frith, 1863.

In 1856-57, when the science and art of photography were still young and developing (pun intended), the Englishman Francis Frith traveled to the Middle East to photograph the great sites of antiquity.  A work of monumental proportions and importance to the early history of documentary photography, Francis Frith’s Photographs of the Holy Land includes some of the earliest published photographic images of Jerusalem, as well as iconic views of Egypt’s monuments and ruins, some now lost or much more decayed. The 111 albumen photographs are mounted in three folio volumes, and the set acquired by Duke this year is notable for the fine condition of the photographs.

From the Archive of Documentary Arts.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

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10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Eight

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

Annotations and Manuscript by Brigid Brophy
Brigid Brophy Collection, 1937-1953

Brigid Antonia Brophy, Lady Levey (1929-1995), was an English writer of novels, biographies, essays, and other works, and a major feminist and pacifist voice of the 1960s and beyond.  She was greatly influenced by Freudian psychoanalytic theory, and this collection shows her engaging with Sigmund Freud’s texts: marking passages of interest to return to, jotting notes to capture moments of inspiration.  In one volume she laid in an untitled manuscript on telepathy.

From the Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

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10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Seven

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

Cover of Carpet Bag Rule in Florida

Carpet Bag Rule in Florida: The Inside Workings of the Reconstruction of Civil Government in Florida After the Close of the Civil War by John Wallace, 1888

John Wallace (1842-1908) was born a slave in North Carolina, served in the Union army during the Civil War, and settled in Florida at the end of the war.  He served in the Florida state House of Representatives and Senate during the Reconstruction era as a Republican, the longest political tenure of any black man in Florida; however, his book, published in 1888, is very critical of his fellow Republicans and Reconstruction rule.  Doubts about Wallace’s authorship emerged quickly, both because of his race and his stance against the Republicans, but proof that the book is not by him remains unfound.

From the John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

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10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Six

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

Page from Mildred Hoover's Photo Album

“My Siberian Trip,” 1919 May-1920 August by Mildred E. Hoover.

Mildred Hoover was an American Red Cross nurse. Her photo album records two trips that Hoover took with Red Cross commissions, to Russia in May 1919 and Europe in February 1920, in 440 black-and-white photographs. While in Siberia, the commission worked at various camps and hospitals for the American Expeditionary forces, but Hoover included photographs of local inhabitants, soldiers of various countries, and provided rare images of a Russian submarine. During their travels in Europe, the commission stopped in London, Antwerp, Warsaw, Krakow, Switzerland, and Paris. There are also photos of Warsaw’s celebration of Poland’s victory over the Bolsheviks at the Battle of Warsaw.

From the Archive of Documentary Arts.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

Previous posts:

10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Five

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

Unsterblicher Tugend-Schatz durch gute Handelschafft erworben von der weyland durchleuchtigsten Chur-Fürstin … Elisabetha Amalia Magdalena verwittibten Pfaltz-Gräfin bey Rhein, und Chur-Fürstin in Bayrn …bey drey-tägiger Leich-Begängnus in einer Lob-Rede by Nicolaus Staudacher, 1710

A memorial volume produced in Augsburg, Germany, after the death of the Countess of Pfalz-Neuburg (1635-1709), showing engraved versions of the 25 giant emblematic paintings created for the funerary ceremonies by the Countess’s court painter, Franz Haagen. A very rare book, it complements the outstanding collection of German emblem books in the RBMSCL.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

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10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Four

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

The Penny Pickwick by Thomas Peckett Prest. Edited by Bos, ca. 1837-42

Charles Dickens’s Pickwick Papers (1836-37) was so popular that it almost immediately generated a flurry of piracies, travesties, and plagiarisms.  One of the first of these was the Penny Pickwick, so called for its being issued weekly in 112 parts, each costing one English penny.  The set now at the RBMSCL contains 108 of the 112 original parts, now very hard to find in their original state (since most sets were read and discarded or bound together).  While its claims to artistic merit are few and far between, Prest’s work nevertheless provides a fascinating glimpse of London’s popular culture at the dawn of the Victorian era and the workings of its publishers, hack writers, and illustrators.  The Penny Pickwick is also an early example of the “penny dreadfuls” that swept through England in the nineteenth century: cheap, sensational fiction aimed at lower-class audiences, and important works in the development of genres such as mystery, science, and horror fiction.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

Previous posts:

10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Three

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year. Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

Illustration from The Story of Bunny Cortex, 1915

The Story of Bunny Cortex, 1915

2010-2011 saw the beginning of a “Literature as Advertising” collection in the Hartman Center: a group of stories, poems, and similar literary works whose primary purpose is the promotion of a product or service.  The collection includes examples from the 1880s to 1950s, featuring such characters as Santa Claus (for the Golden Rule Bazaar of San Francisco), Lewis Carroll’s Alice (selling dairy products), the “Toastie Elfins” (for Post Toasties cereal), and the Pied Piper (for Pied Piper shoes).

From the John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising, and Marketing History.

Through July 25th, find more examples from the Hartman Center’s “Literature as Advertising” collection in their exhibit, “Look Boys and Girls! Advertising to Children in the 20th Century.”

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

Previous posts:

10 Days, 10 New Acquisitions: Day Two

We’re celebrating the beginning of a new fiscal year by reviewing some notable items and collections that arrived here at the RBMSCL in the past year.  Get ready for announcements of many more exciting acquisitions in 2011-2012!

Metropolis, First and Second Editions

Metropolis by Thea van Harbou, 1st and 2nd editions, 1926 and 1927

The first (at right) and second editions of Thea van Harbou’s Metropolis are notable additions to the Glenn Negley Collection of Utopian Literature.  Iconic as the basis for the 1927 expressionist film by Fritz Lang (von Harbou’s husband), the early editions are also notable for the striking graphic design of their covers.  The second “photoplay” edition also features stills from the film.  The editions were acquired as part of a large collection of German science fiction and fantasy from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

For more photos of our new acquisitions (and other materials from the RBMSCL’s collections), check out the “From the RBMSCL’s Collections” set on the Duke University Libraries’ Flickr photostream.

Post contributed by Will Hansen, Assistant Curator of Collections.

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