Database of Book Bindings
The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek holds the largest collection of medieval manuscripts and incunabula in Germany, and, due to its extensive holdings of printed books of the 16th century, also as rich a collection of book bindings of the 15th and 16th century. Since a great part of the old holdings was acquired by the library in the course of the secularisation of Old Bavarian and Swabian monasteries, the majority of the late medieval and early modern book bindings were crafted by book binders of the region. The book bindings are scholarly assigned to individual workshops with the aid of lists of the decor elements used, i. e. stamps, rolls and plates, of which rubbings are prepared. The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek holds an extensive collection of such rubbings, which has only been categorised roughly and catalogued rudimentarily in internal files so far. This source material will now be digitised and catalogued in the common German book bindings database, in order to make it available for research in the fields of the history of books and art, and to thus enable new findings concerning the origin, distribution and reception of manuscripts and early printed books.