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Rare Book Cataloging Resources

Research & Instruction

Rare Book Cataloging Resources

Cataloging Tools

DCRM: Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Books)

DCRM: Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Serials)

DCRM: Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Graphics)

ALA-LC Romanization Tables
Transliteration schemes for non-Roman scripts from the Library of Congress.

Yale Fraktur Chart

Rare Book Toolkit: Directory of Web Resources for the Rare Book Cataloger

RBMS Controlled Vocabularies
Vocabulary for binding, provenance, printing, genre, and relator terms.

Standard Citations Forms for Rare Materials Cataloging

Dictionaries, Thesauri, and Glossaries

LC Linked Data Service: Authorities and Vocabularies
The Linked Data Service provides access to commonly found standards and vocabularies promulgated by the Library of Congress. This includes data values and the controlled vocabularies that house them.

Getty Institute Vocabularies
The Getty Institute’s online vocabularies, including the Art & Architecture Theasaurus (AAT) and the Union List of Artist Names (ULAN).

Bookbinding: A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology
Don Etherington’s dictionary of descriptive book terms.

Oxford Companion to the Book (2010) (access to U of I users only)
Covers the book throughout the world from ancient to modern times. It includes traditional subjects such as bibliography, paleography, the history of printing, editorial theory and practice, textual criticism, book collecting, and libraries.

Dictionary of Literary Biography (access to U of I users only)

Graphic Atlas
A sophisticated resource that presents a unique, object-based approach for the identification and characterization of prints and photographs.

Latin Resources

Latin—English Dictionary
“Words” by William Whitaker, Latin-to-English and English-to-Latin translation.

Glossary of Common Latin Terms Found in Imprints

Lexicon Abbreviaturarum (Adriano Cappelli)
An alphabetical guide to help identify paleographic abbreviations.

Abbreviations Online
Search common Latin abbreviations.

Orbis Latinus Online
Latin place names.

RBMS-BSC Latin Place Names File

Enigma
Unpuzzling difficult Latin readings in medieval manuscripts.

Online Catalogs & Bibliographies

Universal Short Title Catalogue (USTC)
A collective database of all books published in Europe between the invention of printing and the end of the sixteenth century.

English Short Title Catalogue ESTC)
English titles published between 1473 and 1800.

Incunabula Short Title Catalogue (ISTC)
An international database of 15th-century European printing created by the British Library with contributions from institutions worldwide.

COPAC
Searches over 70 UK and Irish academic, national, and specialist library catalogs.

EDIT 16 (ICCU)
Catalog of Italian titles published in the 16th century.

Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo Unico (Italy)
Searches the Italian Union Catalog.

Biblioteca Nacional (Spain)
Searches Spain’s national library, including manuscripts and artworks.

Karlsruher Virtueller Katalog (KVK)
Meta search interface for more than 500 million books and serials in library and book trade catalogs worldwide.

Short Title Catalog Netherlands (STCN)
A Dutch retrospective bibliography for the period 1540-1800; also included are concise descriptions of Dutch (post-)incunabula.

VD 16 (Germany)
German titles from the 16th century.

VD 17 (Germany)
Bibliography of books printed in the German-speaking countries from 1601 to 1700.

Bibliography of American Literature (access to U of I user only)
Describes in exhaustive detail the works of America’s most important literary writers from the time of the Revolution to 1930

Provenance Tools and Authority Files

Virtual International Authority File (VIAF)
VIAF, implemented and hosted by OCLC, is a joint project of several national libraries plus selected regional and trans-national library agencies.

CERL Thesaurus (Consortium of European Research Libraries)
Searches places, printers, authors, corporate bodies, and printer’s devices from the hand-press (1450-c. 1830) period across Europe.

British Book Trade Index
An index of the names and brief biographical details and trade details of people who worked in the book trade in England and Wales and who were trading by 1851.

Penn Provenance Project (Flickr photostream)
This collection of images is useful for identifying bookplates and other records of ownership.

Pratt Institute Ex Libris Collection (Flickr photostream)
The Ex Libris Collection consists of nineteenth- and twentieth-century bookplates from private and institutional libraries.

Clergy of the Church of England Database
Makes available and searchable the principal records of clerical careers from over 50 archives in England and Wales with the aim of providing coverage of as many clerical lives as possible from the Reformation to the mid-nineteenth century.

Catholic Church Hierarchy

Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani

Guide to Special Collections at the University of Illinois
Names and descriptions of collectors and collections at the University of Illinois.