Travel Thursday – Hungary and Transylvania

Written by Louise Cowan, Trainee Liaison Librarian Born in Leicestershire in 1808, John Paget studied medicine at Edinburgh University before travelling extensively on the continent (Czigány).  His travelogue, ‘Hungary and Transylvania: with remarks on their Condition, Social, Political and Economical’ published in 1839 was formed from his visits to the region during 1835-36 and was […]

LGBT History Month: Lord Wolfenden, the man ahead of his time

Written by Adam Koszary, MERL Project Officer. February marks LGBT History Month, and to celebrate it we’re exploring the man who laid the ground for more liberal attitudes to sexuality in Britain. 59 years ago John Wolfenden released a report which proposed that homosexual intercourse between consenting adults should be decriminalized. The uproar it produced in […]

Archive Animals – Horses

Written by Louise Cowan, Trainee Liaison Librarian Unsurprisingly, the Special Collections and Museum of English Rural Life Libraries have a number of items relating horses; from journals to artwork, rare books and DVDs. Here are just a few of my favourites: Horses in Fiction: Black Beauty – Anna Sewell, illustrated by Cecil Aldin (1912) [Children’s […]

Valentine’s Day Cards – The John Lewis Printing Collection

Written by Louise Cowan, Trainee Liaison Librarian February 14th celebrates Valentine’s Day, the Christian feast day of the martyred St Valentine of Rome. While we know that the celebration originated around 498 A.D when it was instated by Pope Gelasius, little is actually known of St Valentine and his life. The most popular version recounts […]

In the spotlight: Darwin’s On the Origin of the Species

Written by Erika Delbecque, UMASCS Librarian Today is Darwin Day, an annual event that marks the anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin on 12 February 1809. It aims to highlight Darwin’s contribution to science and celebrate science in general. Darwin first published his groundbreaking theory of evolution through natural selection in his famous work On the Origin of the Species, which was […]

Travel Thursday – The Voyages of the Alceste

Written by Louise Cowan, Trainee Liaison Librarian This week’s Travel Thursday follows the voyages of the ship Alceste as recounted by the ship’s surgeon, John McLeod in his ‘Voyage of His Majesty’s Ship Alceste to China, Corea, and the Island of Lewchew with an account of her shipwreck’ (3rd ed, 1820) [Reserve 915.1].  Under the command of […]

‘My Favourite Ladybird’ exhibition on display at University Library

Written by Fiona Melhuish, UMASCS Librarian If you are visiting the University Library, take a look at our new colourful exhibition on display in the entrance area! The exhibition, entitled My Favourite Ladybird, features a selection of favourite titles from the University of Reading collection of Ladybird books, chosen by staff, volunteers and community group members […]

Abbey Junior School explore our rare book collections

Written by Fiona Melhuish, UMASCS Librarian A fortnight ago, we were delighted to welcome three groups of UII (Year 5) girls from the Abbey Junior School with their teachers and the School Librarian, to view items from our Children’s Collection, the Great Exhibition Collection and the Ladybird Books archive. We started off each session by exploring […]

Mary Shelley and Gideon Mantell

Written by David Thomas, UMASCS Graduate Trainee Library Assistant We recently made quite a discovery in Special Collections – a book that had once belonged to Mary Shelley. Shelley’s gothic masterpiece Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus is arguably more popular than ever and is still inspiring films such as the latest Victor Frankenstein which was […]