Conference Proceeding: Vienna University Library’s Collection of Old Hebrew Prints

Vienna University Library owns a collection of roughly 1,200 Old Hebrew prints, produced and circulated all over Europe over a period of more than 400 years, starting with the late fifteenth century. All of them have comprehensive bibliographic and item records in ALMA, which are in the process of being incorporated into “Footprints,” a database on Jewish book history managed at Columbia University. Using showcase examples from the Vienna collection, this talk will address the subject of early modern academic collection building in the fields of Hebrew, the Bible and Judaism. The earlier Jewish and Christian repositories consolidated in the Vienna collection will be discussed in connection with questions concerning the work of Christian Hebraists who edited and authored books in Hebrew. The second part of the presentation will describe the digital processing of the ALMA records required for their inclusion into the “Footprints” database and the creation of a linked data graph designed to support research questions formulated using a digital humanities approach.