The Society for Emblem Studies

Digital Sources

OpenEmblem Portal:
An international initiative hosted by the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. Among other things the aim is to access emblems published on the web, using a single search mechanism.

Memorial University of Newfoundland Alciato Website

University of Glasgow Emblem Website:
This site provides digital fac-similes and extensive annotation for different editions of Alciato, French and Italian emblem books.

Emblem Project Utrecht:
Currently includes Daniel Heinsius, Emblemata amatoria; Otto van Veen, Amorum emblemata and Amoris divini emblemata.

Bavarian State Library Project:
“Digitalisierung von ausgewählten Emblembüchern der frühen Neuzeit”. The project sets out to provide digital versions of emblem books unlikely to be mounted elsewhere. The selection is indeed interestingly eclectic.

Biblioteca Digital Siglo de Oro (BIDISO) – Emblemática
This important digital collection is devoted to Spanish emblem books (including emblem books translated into Spanish) and related literature. It also comprises an excellent bibliography and digital resources.

University of Bergamo, Biblioteca Emblematica:
“L’archivio comprende un corpus di 372 volumi di trattatistica sugli emblemi e sulle imprese digitalizzato in formato immagine. I testi riguardano pubblicazioni europee che vanno dai primi decenni del 1500 al 1820 circa. La banca dati, consultabile tramite ricerca semplice e avanzata sulle informazioni bibliografiche, consente di visualizzare le opere nella loro interezza attraverso immagini in formato JPG.” Access to the site requires a login, obtainable by e-mail from the Home Page. Indexing is minimal (with no content indexing at all), but there is a considerable number of important books here, from various (unacknowledged) libraries. Reproduction standards are not high.

The English Emblem Book Project
An undated project in which ten important English emblem books, some in late editions.

Emblem Books:
A full set of scans of the 1531 text of Alciato, with summary emblem texts in English, prepared by Bob Hay, who runs a web operation in Athens, Georgia. Nice idea, but marred by typos and minimal sense of historical context. An Inventory of Applied Emblems in Switzerland
This website provides a database of applied emblems in Switzerland, gathering information from buildings and objects, and also individual emblems – including pictures, sources and bibliography. It also contains a number of helpful indexes (for Motifs, Mottoes, Artists and Sources). 

Centro Ernesto Soares de Iconografia e Simbólica:
Contains, notably, bibliographical information from Portuguese sources not found elsewhere.