The Census of Italian 16th-Century Editions (EDIT 16) aims at documenting Italian books printed during the 16th century and at reviewing the countrywide heritage. The data base includes editions printed in Italy between 1501 and 1600, in any language, and editions printed abroad in Italian. It also contains information about the authors, publishers, uniform titles, printers’ devices which can be used for direct search and the related bibliographic sources archive.
1,591 state, local authority, church and private libraries in Italy are taking part in the Census in close collaboration with the Istituto centrale per il catalogo unico delle biblioteche italiane e per le informazioni bibliografiche (ICCU), that manages the project, providing information and describing the 16th-century editions held by them.
Until recently libraries outside of Italy have not been included in the survey. The University of Manchester Library is pleased to be one of the first libraries in the UK to sign a co-operation agreement with ICCU to enhance the EDIT16 database with our holdings of 16th-century Italian books. The John Rylands Library has particularly rich collections of Italian books, especially those from the 2nd Earl Spencer and Walter L. Bullock. In total there are over 5,000 16th-century Italian editions to be added to the database.
We have started work on the Walter L. Bullock collection, with the assistance of Sara D’Amico who spent five months at the library as part of the EU Erasmus+ training scheme. Sara has already discovered nearly 30 editions not recorded in the EDIT16 database and we expect there will be more as the work progresses. Our next step is to share data from the Aldine Collection, the bulk of which was collected by the 2nd Earl Spencer in the early 19th century. We look forward to working more closely with our new Italian partners!