The Encyclopaedia of Books in the Czech Middle Ages and Early Modern Period

Z Encyklopedie knihy

The encyclopaedia covers the period from the beginning of Czech book culture in the Middle Ages to when books were no longer hand-printed at the beginning of the 19th century and includes interpretive entries for individual book culture phenomena as well as developmental entries.

Entries from an encyclopaedia focused on printed books (Petr Voit, Encyklopedie knihy: starší knihtisk a příbuzné obory mezi polovinou 15. a počátkem 19. století / The Book Encyclopaedia: Early Book Printing and Related Fields from the Mid 15th Century to the Beginning of 19th Century/ Praha 2006) includes a completely new portion comprised of entries about manuscript books after a team of codicologists including experts on bookbinding and illuminated manuscripts was charged with their creation.

The encyclopaedia’s illustrations come from the original visuals in Voit’s encyclopaedia and reproductions of illustrations from manuscripts of Czech origin (especially those that were illuminated) deposited in Czech and foreign institutions. Besides these, the encyclopaedia also includes links to electronic facsimiles in digital libraries.

As well as being available as an independent electronic source about book culture, the encyclopaedia is integrated into the Knihověda.cz portal. For example, searches of bibliographic records display entries for individual printers in the encyclopaedia. The encyclopaedia is also useful for educational purposes at multiple levels, especially for secondary and tertiary schools, but it also provides an overview of book culture from the Middle Ages up to the beginning of the 19th century to all interested experts, researchers, and employees of historical institutions, as well as the general public.

The contents of the encyclopaedia are available under a Creative Commons license (specifically CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0) that anticipates the use of the content in sources such as Wikipedia, but demands citation and forbids commercial use of the text.

The images are available under licenses that were negotiated with the owners of the individual reproduced manuscripts.