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Biblioteca Histórica de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid

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Historical note

The Biblioteca Histórica “Marqués de Valdecilla” of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid is part of the library network that constitutes the library system of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid’s Library. The Universidad Complutense receives its name from the primitive institution founded by Cardinal Cisneros in Alcalá de Henares, in the transition from the 15th to the 16th century. The origin of the Library of the Universidad Complutense may be traced to the period of the foundation of its University. It started with the collection obtained by the Cardinal Cisneros. Other educational institutions integrated in the University also contributed with their rich scientific collections: the Reales Estudios de San Isidro (formerly Colegio Imperial de los Jesuitas), the Real Colegio de Medicina y Cirugía de San Carlos, the Real Colegio de Farmacia or the Real Colegio de Veterinaria. During the 19th century the collection was remarkably enlarged by the contributions made by some prominent individuals. Bibliophiles, writers, politicians, university professors and scholars, etc. helped to create a very valuable historical collection.

Name and coverage of file

The bibliographical collection includes about 2,000 manuscripts, 742 incunabula, more than 130,000 volumes of books printed from the 16th up to the 19th centuries, and an important collection of personal papers belonging to relevant authors and scholars. A few but notable collections of engravings and illustrated books are also preserved in the Library.

Mode of cataloguing

All of the records catalogued using book-in-hand have been created according to ISBD(A) and the BNE Reglas de Catalogación and are rich in notes information, including typographic signatures and illustrations. The first point of access to the bibliographic collection of the Biblioteca Complutense is, naturally, its online catalogue, “CISNE”, which operates with INNOPAC-Millenium, the library management system developed by Innovative Interfaces, Inc. The information contained within the bibliographic records is stored in Marc 21 format. Rare books, manuscripts and special collections kept in the Biblioteca Complutense have their own specific search within CISNE. In addition to the author, title or subject searches, others of special interest for historical and bibliographical research can be conducted, such as searches by printing places or call numbers.

Author field searching enables us to retrieve all personal and institutional authors related to the authorship of the edition (authors, translators, commentators, engravers, illustrators, etc.), as well as names of printers, booksellers and publishers. Items bearing marks of ownership can also be retrieved through author field searching. The function “ant. pos.” (“antiguo poseedor” –former owner) distinguishes previous owners from other responsibilities. In this sense, the retrieval of former provenances, both institutional and personal, has been considered a specific target by the Biblioteca Histórica of the Universidad Complutense. Personal name headings, whether authors, collaborators or subjects, have been standardised. Birth and death dates are included in some of the personal name entries, as are titles designating nobility, office, or religious order.

Copies bound together have been individually described, linking them to the record for the corresponding edition. In the associated notes for such records the circumstance for their being bound together will be indicated. In the case of incomplete copies description has been made using different reference works treating complete copies of this title. The missing parts are indicated in a copy note. If the correct edition for the copy cannot be identified the description dates will be included between brackets.

Present/Absent fields

Most of the records are provided with a collational formula. Only in special cases the fingerprint is provided.

Treatment of multivolume works

When a title, printer or pagination discrepancy is found in different volumes of a work, individualised description is provided. In some cases two levels of description can be observed.

Recommendations for searching

It’s possible to search by author (that includes: authors, collaborators, illustrators, engravers, printers, publishers, former owners, etc.), title and place of publication, in the standardised forms. Uniform titles exist for some literary, legal, and religious forms in accordance with the Reglas de Catalogación. Information regarding persons related to a work can be identified using the following normalised abbreviations:

Ed.: publisher , bookseller. Ed. lit.: literary editor, annotator, commentator. Il.: illustrator, engraver, designer. Imp.: printer. Pr.: preface. Trad.: translator. Ant. pos.: Former owner

Descriptions of illustrations included in the works can be found looking in the notes for engravers or woodblock printers using “grabados calcográficos” or “xilográficos” or their abbreviations: “grab. calc.”, or “grab. xil.”. Searches can be limited by the language and the date of publication, such as by subject or words appearing in the title. In the case of printings without a publication date on the title page or colophon, the abbreviation “s.a.” can appear in the publication field, but the coded information reflects whatever date was included as a note in the description and can approximate a date of publication (certificates, licenses, commendations, described events, known flourishing date of the printer). Topical headings are present in many records.

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 resources/hpb/content/universidad_complutense_madrid.txt · Last modified: 2023/12/20 17:04 by liventsova



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