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Weekly News Digest

August 15, 2011 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITI’s Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

CLICK HERE to view more Weekly News Digest items.

ProQuest Uncovers More Treasures from European Rare Book Libraries

Early European Books, ProQuest’s program to digitize the archives of landmark European libraries, has taken another leap forward with its latest release, expanding the number and range of rare early modern books available through the online service. Debuting now are the first installments of digitized books from the National Library of the Netherlands and further content from the National Central Library of Florence. The number of digitized books—now more than 6,500—will grow rapidly throughout the balance of 2011 and into 2012 as more libraries join the program. Digitization has already begun at the Wellcome Library in London, and works from this renowned collection of medical and scientific books will be added to the database in the fall.

Although the National Central Library of Florence is well known for its excellent holdings of Italian literary and religious texts and early editions of the classics, this release also includes many important examples of printing from the German-speaking towns that pioneered printing in the 15th century. Books with extensive woodcut illustrations, such as Johannes Angelus’s astrological work Astrolabium (Augsburg, 1488) and the first Latin translation of Sebastian Brant’s well-known allegory The Ship of Fools (Stultifera navis, Strasbourg, 1497) join the works of important early printers such as Anton Koberger of Nürnberg and Peter Drach of Speyer.

The collection from Florence includes works printed throughout Western Europe. The texts from the Netherlands give an insight into this crucial period in which the Dutch Republic was formed and grew to be a major world power.

Inspired by ProQuest’s flagship Early English Books Online, the aim of Early European Books is to build a comprehensive library of European printed books from the birth of printing in the 1450s to the year 1700. This long-term project will grow over the years by digitizing the entire rare book holdings of Europe’s major national and specialist research libraries.

Source: ProQuest

Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli

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