French Emblems at Glasgow

The project gives you access to all the French Emblem Books of the 16th century, along with their Latin versions when appropriate. A total of 28 emblem books are available in both transcribed and facsimile versions.

Visit the project website

An emblem page, showing the digitised image on the left and transcribed text on the right
An emblem page, showing the digitised image on the left and transcribed text on the right

While the seed of the emblem as a genre was sown in Germany in 1531, it flowered and developed in France during the 16th century, and it was from there that it spread throughout Europe.  The site has been developed, with generous funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council under the Resource Enhancement Scheme, by a team led by Post-Doctoral Research Assistant Jonathan Spangler, and Project Director Alison Adams. All but two of the emblem books digitised are from the Stirling Maxwell Collection in Glasgow University Library. The Bodleian Library and the Bibliothèque Mazarine have generously made material available to enable us to present the complete corpus.

Each emblem has been keyed and marked using XML in various ways to allow maximum readability and searchability. Most of these won't be seen on the page, but work behind the scenes in the search process. Most of the text has been keyed in a direct manner, with no changes, but we have systematically made a few emendations.  A facsimile view of each page is also available.  The transcribed page also offers several extra elements to help comprehend the emblem: all Latin mottoes and primary (mostly verse) texts have been translated into English, as have secondary texts when no vernacular version is available; and most emblems are accompanied by annotations made by various scholars affiliated with this project. Extensive search functionality is provided and emblem images and text have been categorised using the Iconclass classification system for art and iconography.

Main contact: Alison Adams

Developers: Brian AitkenGraeme Cannon

Start year: 2004

End year: 2006

Funded by: AHRC

Subject areas: Archives & Special CollectionsFrenchInformation Studies

Keywords: ArtDigital EditionDigitisationHistoryTranscriptionXML

Record last updated 2020-01-17