Chetham’s Library Hosts the Transnational Early Modern Book Conference

On 29th May, Chetham’s Library hosted the second day of the Transnational Early Modern Book Conference. Organised by postgraduate researchers Seren Morgan-Roberts and Ellen Werner, the conference brought together more than thirty researchers from six different countries to explore the ways in which books were objects of transnational exchange between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries.

Postgraduate researcher Ellen Werner delivering a paper on Lawrence Langley’s Marginalia.

The first day of the conference had taken place in the University of Manchester’s Oddfellows Hall and had included papers on subjects such as Latin as a language of international exchange and relations between early modern French and English book production. On the second day, the beautiful setting of the Baronial Hall provided the backdrop for a range of talks. The day’s panels focused on topics like religious networks of reading, gendered approaches to reading and publishing, international print production, and, fittingly, libraries as sites of transnational encounter. The day’s keynote lecture about ‘Early Modern Language Manuals in Transnational Perspective’ was given by Dr John Gallagher of the University of Leeds.

John Gallagher’s keynote paper, ‘‘Everywhere, where they learn French’: early modern language manuals in transnational perspectives’.

In addition, participants also had the opportunity to explore Chetham’s Library on a guided tour and to get a glimpse of the Library’s collection of Renaissance books, which was a beautiful link to the subject of the conference. It was fantastic to see how impressed attendees were by the building and collections and how well the venue lent itself to hosting a conference. The organisers would like to express their heartfelt thanks to the staff at Chetham’s Library, who ensured that everything ran smoothly throughout the day and without whom such an informative and enjoyable conference would not have been possible, as well as to the Northwest Consortium Doctoral Training Partnership (NWCDTP), the Society for Renaissance Studies (SRS) and the University of Manchester’s Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Arts and Languages (CIDRAL) for their generous funding.


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