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Ligatus Summer School 2018

From: Monday 15.10.18
at 9:00am
To: Friday 26.10.18
at 6:00pm

National Library of Greece in Athens


The contribution that bindings can make to our understanding of the history and culture of the book is often neglected, but they can offer insights into the study of readership, the book trade, and the provenance of books that are often not available elsewhere. The main purpose of the Summer School is to uncover the possibilities latent in the detailed study of bookbinding. Both courses offered in this Summer School look at bindings from different geographical areas and with a different approach.

Event description: 

Week 1 (15-19 October) 

European Bookbinding 1450-1830

Tutor: Professor N. Pickwoad

This course will follow European bookbinding from the end of the Middle Ages to the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, using the bindings themselves to illustrate the aims and intentions of the binding trade. A large part of the course will be devoted to the identification of both broad and detailed distinctions within the larger groups of plain commercial bindings and the possibilities of identifying the work of different countries, cities, even workshops without reference to finishing tools. The identification and significance of the different materials used in bookbinding will be examined, as well as the classification of bookbindings by structural type, and how these types developed through the three centuries covered by the course. The development of binding decoration will be touched on, but will not form a major part of the discussion.
The course consists of ten 90-minute sessions with Powerpoint presentations (over 800 images will be shown). Actual examples of bindings will be examined in the afternoons, primarily from the National Library collections, but visits are also planned to the Gennadius Library, the Parliamentary Library and the library of the Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation, in Piraeus.


Week 2 (22-26 October) 

Identifying and Recording Bookbinding Structures of the Eastern Mediterranean

Tutors: Dr Athanasios Velios and Dr Georgios Boudalis

This course is divided into two interconnected sessions.

In the first section, Dr Georgios Boudalis, will focus on the major structural and decorative features of the different bookbinding traditions that have developed in the eastern Mediterranean – including the Coptic, Syriac, Armenian, Georgian and Islamic – with special focus on the Byzantine and post-Byzantine bookbindings. The aim is to follow the evolution of these closely related bookbindings and establish their similarities and differences during lectures, slide-shows and demonstrations of real bookbindings from local collections. This part of the course will consist of six 90-minute presentations from Monday to Wednesday.

The second part of the course will be taught by Dr Athanasios Velios and will deal with the methodologies and techniques that can be used to record bookbindings. This session will focus on:

Linked Data, the semantic web and the CIDOC Conceptual Reference Model (CRM);
standardised vocabularies for book descriptions (Language of Bindings and SKOS);
the development of database schemas for book descriptions;
mapping bookbinding description databases to CIDOC-CRM and publishing Linked Data; and
photographic records and workflows for large collection surveys.

A part of these sessions will be devoted to to the actual recording of specific bindings. This session will consist of a combination of presentations and hands-on workshops.

Course Fees

Course fees are £300 per person per week

Please note that course fees cover tuition only. Participants are responsible for arranging their own travel, accommodation, meals etc. during the School.