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Folger Shakespeare Library Transcribathon returns to Cabell Library April 7

April 5, 2017

Just in time for Shakespeare's birthday, the Folger Shakespeare Library's Early Modern Manuscripts Online (EMMO) project returns to VCU Libraries Friday, April 7, from noon to 4 p.m. in the James Branch Cabell Library Lecture Hall.

It is VCU's second Transcribathon. At the transcribathon, people transcribe and encode handwritten early modern documents. Although all of the documents have been scanned in their original condition and are available in digital form, they have not been transcribed. Those who are familiar with handwriting from the period know that deciphering such documents is not always easy. The purpose of the event is to help the Folger Shakespeare Library make clean transcriptions of its documents so that the are more readable and more usable for researchers and students.

"The transcribathon gives everyone at and around VCU the opportunity to develop two skills," according to VCU English Professor Joshua Eckhardt: "The ability to read some of the Folger Shakespeare Library's manuscripts and to mark up those texts according to the conventions of the Textual Coding Initiative. The event combines some of the oldest and newest communication technologies, using digital means to expand access to handwritten documents. And we can now see the eventual goal of our collective work at the beta site for the Folger project."

The event is free and open to all. No registration is required. No prior experience with paleography (the study of historical handwriting) is required. Attendees are free to come and go or stay during the 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. work session. Bring your laptop, or use one of ours. And feel free to bring your lunch. Drinks and snacks will be provided. Questions about the event? Cotact Joshua Eckhardt.

Practice your paleography skills before the event using this archive of instructional resources, manuscript images, and accurate transcriptions from recent "Practical Paleography" EMMO sessions at the Folger Shakespeare Library.

This event is presented by the Folger Shakespeare LibraryVCU Libraries and the VCU Department of English in collaboration with the VCU Humanities Research Center.

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