February marks the 500th anniversary of Aldus Manutius’ death, so we’ll be posting blogs about his works throughout the month.

This edition of The Iliad was printed in 1504 by Aldus Manutius. His goal was to print versions of classic works into languages more people could read, and into books people could actually carry around. 

This book is interesting because of all of the conservation efforts it has endured. The piece of paper on the inside of the front cover of the box details the different measures taken, including rebinding the book that was in a broken 19th century binding and pulling, washing and de-acidifying the paper. Conservation efforts today at the University of Iowa are usually less invasive and try to preserve the condition of the binding and paper without changing it, as long as it can still be used. While this book is much sturdier than others of the same age due to its gorgeous new binding, some of the signs of the age of the paper are lost on the reader because of the washing. 

If you’re looking for more information on Aldus Manutius, check out our blog!


Homer.  Homērou Ilias = Homeri Ilias.  [Venice : Aldus, 1504]

PA4018 A2 1504 


Every time I look at one of these books it’s like looking at a skeleton.  As heartbreaking as it is to see a book falling apart, it’s also so interesting to see how the book was made, from the inside.  This book was made in 1575, but is still actually looking pretty good for its age!


FOLIO K349.37 .C8 1575

Corpus juris civilis.  

Dn. sacratissimi principis Ivstiniani pp. a Iuris enucleati ex omni vetere iure collecti Digestorvm seu Pandectarvm libri quinquaginta: cvm breuissimis doctissimorum quorundam iuris-consultorum annotationibus in margine adscriptis, quibus plerique loci vel restituuntur, vel diligentius explicantur; opera & diligentia L. Charondae …  Antverpiae, Ex officina Christophori Plantin, 1575.

Scottish Metrical Psalter, Title page
Musical score decorated with w/c paintings. The Wode or St Andrews Psalter comprises an important collection of manuscript musical part books of the Psalms. It is named after Thomas Wode, vicar of St Andrews, who, under the patronage of James Stewart, Earl of Moray, copied and compiled the books between 1562 and 1592.
The full LUNA record for this item is here: http://ift.tt/1me6apn…
© The University of Edinburgh Library by CRC, University of Edinburgh http://flic.kr/p/gH1zAW


ᴵ ᴶᵁˢᵀ ᴰᴵˢᶜᴼᵛᴱᴿᴱᴰ ᵀᴴᴵˢ ᴬᴹᴬᶻᴵᴺᴳ 1580'ˢ ᴼᴿᴵᴳᴵᴺᴬᴸ ᴮÁᵀᴴᴼᴿᵞ ᴱᴿᶻˢéᴮᴱᵀ'ˢ ᴾᴼᴿᵀᴿᴬᴵᵀ, ᴾᴬᴵᴺᵀᴱᴰ ᴮᵞ ᴬᴺᵀᴴᴼᴺᴵᴱ ᴮᴸᴼᶜᴷᴸᴬᴺᴰᵀ ᵛᴬᴺ ᴹᴼᴺᵀᶠᴼᴿᵀ , 1580.

#erzsebetbathory #bathory #darkages #16thcentury #1500s #mannerism #anthonieblocklandt #elizabethbathory #countessbathory #portraitoftheday #slovakia #historyofart #hungary #historymaker #nadasdy

Looks like this 1549 copy of Polybius’ Historiae needs some attention from our conservation department! Many years of use has had it’s toll on this book’s binding, but at least that allows us to see the sewing technique underneath. [xfPA4391 A2 1549] #uiowa #specialcollections #libraries #bookbinding #bookrepair #booksewing #polybius #historiae #ancienthistory #conservation #16thcentury

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