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Preliminary Reading List

M-70. The Handwriting & Culture of Early Modern English Manuscripts

Heather Wolfe


Preliminary Advices

Please familiarize yourself with some of these works and online resources—there is a lot of overlap, and some of the printed sources might not be readily available outside of libraries (in which case, focus on the online resources). If possible, please also bring a laptop for class exercises and homework.

  1. Marshall, Hilary. Palaeography for family and local historians. Chichester, England: Phillimore, 2004. Introductory material.
  2. McKerrow, R.B. “A note on Elizabethan handwriting,” An introduction to bibliography (Oxford, 1928), pp. 341-50, reprinted in Philip Gaskell, A new introduction to bibliography (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1972), 361-67.
  3. Petti, Anthony. English literary hands from Chaucer to Dryden. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1977. Introduction.
  4. Preston, Jean and Laetitia Yeandle. English handwriting, 1400-1650: an introductory manual. Binghamton, NY, 1992. Introduction. [contact Mario Di Cesare, Pegasus Press, 101 Booter Road, Fairview, NC 28730 or email to obtain a copy].
  5. Tannenbaum, Samuel A. The handwriting of the Renaissance. New York: Columbia University Press, 1930.
  6. English Handwriting, 1500-1700: an online course. Faculty of English, University of Cambridge.
  7. Medieval and early modern paleography online seminar series. David Postles, University of Leicester.
  8. Online tuition in the palaeography of Scottish documents, 1500-1750. The Scottish Archive Network Ltd., 2003.
  9. Palaeography: reading old handwriting 1500-1800, a practical online tutorial. National Archives, Kew (formerly the Public Record Office).