Works from Special Collections in the UW Digital Collections
The University of Wisconsin Digital Collections provide online access to resources from UW academic libraries, and many of the collections include items from Special Collections. Notable among them are
- Adam, Robert (1728-1792). Ruins of the palace of the Emperor Diocletian at Spalatro in Dalmatia. London: Printed for the author, 1764.
- Chambers, Ephraim (ca. 1680-1740). Cyclopaedia, or, an universal dictionary of arts and sciences. London: James Knapton [and others], 1728. 2 vols.
- Civil War Band Collection: 1st Brigade Band of Brodhead, Wisconsin. (Part of the Mills Music Library Special Collections; the collection is housed in the Department of Special Collections, Memorial Library).
- Hooke, Robert (1635-1703). Micrographia: or some physiological descriptions of minute bodies made by magnifying glasses: with observations and inquiries thereupon. London: Printed for John Martyn, printer to the Royal Society, 1667.
- Perrault, Claude (1613-1688). Memoir's [sic]for a natural history of animals. London: Printed by Joseph Streater ... 1688. Vol. 1.
Many items from Special Collections are also represented in Publishers' Bindings Online, 1815-1930: The Art of Books, a joint project with the University of Alabama.
Among the works from Special Collections digitized recently as part of the Digital Library for the Decorative Arts and Material Culture are William and John Halfpenny's Rural Architecture in the Gothick Taste (1752) and The Country Gentleman’s Pocket Companion (1756), bound together in a single volume in the Thordarson Collection, and William Hogarth's The Analysis of Beauty: Written With a View of Fixing the Fluctuating Ideas of Taste (1753). A German edition of Hogarth's work (1754) can also be consulted in Special Collections. The digitized versions are
- Rural Architecture: http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/DLDecArts.HalfpennyRural
- Country Gentleman's Pocket Companion: http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/DLDecArts.CountryGent
- Analysis of Beauty: http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/DLDecArts.Hogarth
For other recent additions to the UW Digital Collections, please see UWDC News.
Heinrich Khunrath, Amphitheatrum sapientiae aeternae [Hamburg: s.n., 1595] is an alchemical classic, the best known of Khunrath's works. The work is infused with a strange combination of Christianity and magic, illustrated with elaborate, hand-colored, engraved plates heightened with gold and silver. The tension between spirituality and experiment and the rich symbolism of Khunrath's writings and their engravings brought condemnation of the book by the Sorbonne in 1625, and now attract attention from scholars. Support generously provided by the Brittingham Fund made it possible to provide high-resolution images of both the engraved plates and the letterpress pages, along with transcriptions of the engraved text surrounding the circular images.
Johann Anton Moscherosch von Wisselsheim. Wohlmeinende, treue, und sehr nuetzliche Ermahnungen an die Anfaenger in dem tiefsinningen Studio der Hermetischen Philosophie (Nuremberg: George Bauer, 1765). This electronic facsimile provides broader access to a fragile and rare work that typifies the strengths of history of science collections in the Department of Special Collections. The book speaks to issues of early modern science, philosophy, and the occult, and fits with other holdings of Special Collections, notably the Duveen Collection of Alchemy and Chemistry and important early works in philosophy and theology.