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Incunable Bookbindings
About Incunable Bookbindings

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Incunable Bookbindings at The Morgan Library & Museum

In 2006 the conservator and bookbinder Scott Husby made an inventory of bookbindings in the incunable collection at The Morgan Library & Museum. Altogether he identified 409 Gothic/contemporary bindings, 32 contemporary interim bindings, and 341 notable later bindings. On the basis of his findings, a team of volunteers and interns have added binding descriptions to CORSAIR records and have created genre terms that make it possible to search for different types of bindings as well as bindings executed in different places and periods.

To locate different types of bindings search by subject/genre using genre terms such as CALF BINDINGS, RETROSPECTIVE BINDINGS, TACKETED BINDINGS. The subject browse feature will display headings distinguishing types of bindings by place and date.

To locate bindings by a specific shop or individual search by name browse using terms such as PAYNE, ROGER or ORNAMENTALE BLÜTE I WORKSHOP.

To locate all records linked to incunable binding images, click here.

For more information about incunable bindings, visit the Bibliographical Society of America Web site Bookbindings on Incunables in American Library Collections, which contains Husby's descriptions and photographs of selected examples in eighteen participating libraries.

About Incunable Bookbindings Images

These photographs of incunable bookbindings were made by the conservator and bookbinder Scott Husby in 2009 using a Nikon D70 camera at ISO setting 200. On the basis of an inventory of the incunable collection he made in 2006, he selected 121 of the most important original bindings which are documented here with 209 digital images depicting front covers, back covers, inscriptions, and other copy-specific features that might help with the identification of bookbinding workshops. He has kindly granted permission to display these images, which are for personal, educational, and noncommercial use only. To obtain high resolution images for publication purposes, inquire with the Photography and Rights Department by . Publication is prohibited without written permission from The Morgan Library & Museum.

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The programs of The Morgan Library & Museum are made possible with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Background images: Photography by Todd Eberle unless otherwise noted. © 2006 Todd Eberle.