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The Collation

Folger Tooltips: Changes to the Digital Image Collection

Dear Readers:

Our Digital Image Collection has had a bit of a make-over. The purpose of today’s post is to introduce you to new fields and field names and to explain a bit of background that lead to these changes.


As long-time visitors to will remember, for years we have relied for the most part on two sources for the descriptions that accompany digital images: the in-house digital image database used by the Photography and Digital Image office (PDI), 1 and Hamnet, when relevant catalog records are available. 

  1. To learn more about the work of PDI under the leadership of Julie Ainsworth, check out this Collation Q & A, and  in particular don’t miss the workflow chart (pdf)!
  2. See for instance this Collation post on access to images from Finding aids, or this Collation post on accessing cover-to-cover digitization from Hamnet.
  3. A good example of this is our ca. 1608 English translation of Ortelius (bib record: This title has been digitized cover-to-cover (full set of BookReader thumbnails:, but has also had each map captioned in detail, permitting keyword-searchable access to individual plates. E.g., this map of North Africa can be searched in both English and Latin, as it is captioned with an Image title of  “Map of the kingdoms of Fes and Morocco and inset map of the Kingdom of Kongo from Abraham Ortelius. Theatrum orbis terrarum. London, 1606 (i.e. 1608?).”, but also provides a transcription of a portion of the engraved text, “Fessae et Marocchi Regna Africae.”
  4. In 2012 the National Endowment for the Humanities funded a Folger digitization and subject indexing project called “British Book Illustration: Extending Access to 17th Century Visual Culture.” We call it “BBI” for short. We’ll cover this project, and our use of Iconclass, in some detail in future Collation posts, so stay tuned for that. Meanwhile to get a sneak peek at some of the early, not-yet-subject indexed digital images created under this project, here’s a link. More soon!


Please can you tell me if the Folger has available on-line texts of the successive editions of Camden’s Britannia 1586, 1587,1590, 1594, 1600, and 1607 or any of these. I would be most grateful as I am trying to check which editions were used by the authors of successive descriptions of England. I would be most grateful.

Martin Biddle — May 17, 2020


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