Tudor Books and Readers: 1485-1603
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In addition to its unrivaled collection of antique hand presses, the Plantin-Moretus Museum preserves the original type foundry, the largest surviving collection of type used at an early printing house, a proofreading room, a seventeenth-century book shop, and a library that contains an example of nearly every book produced by the Officina Plantiniana. We have reserved a bloc of rooms at Hotel Cammerpoorte in Antwerp. This two-star hotel does not offer luxury accommodations, but it is comfortable and affordable. Located in the old city, it is a short walk from the Plantin-Moretus Museum. Meeting space will be supplied by the Sint-Andries campus of Lessius University College, which is located within easy walking distance of the Hotel and the Plantin-Moretus Museum.
Antwerp is the site of the Heritage Library Hendrik Conscience, which preserves materials related to the seminar. Participants may wish to explore the Royal Museum of Fine Art, the residence of the Flemish Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens, or other sites. Nearby points of interest include the Erasmus House Museum, in Brussels; Bruges, where Caxton established his first printing enterprise; and Leuven, the site of Erasmus’s philological institution, the Collegium Trilinguae.
The British Library preserves what is probably the strongest collection in the world for our field of study. Senate House Library at the University of London houses very rich collections of Tudor books, as do other nearby libraries and archives, including Lambeth Palace Library, the Archive of the English Jesuit Province, the Society of Antiquaries, the British Museum Department of Prints and Drawings, and more. We shall reside at College Hall of University College London, which is located close to Senate House Library and within walking distance of the British Library.
The cultural resources of London include the British Museum, National Gallery, Tower of London, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, West End theaters, New Globe Theater, and more. Participants who wish to visit sites related to printing history could seek out exhibitions at the St. Bride Printing Library, the largest institution of its kind in the world.
Seminar participants will reside at St. Edmund Hall, which is the sole surviving example of a medieval students’ hall. The ivy-covered quadrangles of this college of Oxford University represent a tranquil enclave at the very center of Oxford. It is no more than a five-minute walk away from the collection of nine million books at the Bodleian Library. Seminar meetings will take place at a meeting room at St. Edmund Hall; at the Bodleian Library and at the college libraries of Magdalen, Merton, and St. Johns.
Oxford is home to the Ashmolean Museum, the oldest museum in Great Britain, which houses a collection of antiquities, old masters, Pre-Raphaelite paintings, and more; the Museum of the History of Science, which preserves an incomparable collection of antique astronomical and scientific instruments; and the Pitt Rivers Museum, which is one of the paramount ethnographic collections in the world. Frequent musical performances and theatrical productions take place during the summer. Bookstores are abundant. Pubs include the Bear, which dates back to the thirteenth century, and the Eagle and Child, where C.S. Lewis met with J.R.R. Tolkien and other members of a literary circle known as the Inklings. Out-of-door activities include punting (i.e., poling along rivers in shallow boats), walking or jogging in the University parks, strolling in the oldest botanical garden in Great Britain, and riding by bus or cycling to sites such as Blenheim Palace in the surrounding countryside. The beautiful Cotswold Hills are close by. The Royal Shakespeare Company performs daily productions at nearby Stratford-upon-Avon. Rapid busses to central London stop close to the entrance of St. Edmund Hall.
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British Library (London)
Senate House Library (London)
Bodleian Library (Oxford)