Thursday, May 05, 2016

Major grant for the Early Manuscripts Electronic Library

MANUSCRIPT DIGITIZATION: The Ahmanson Foundation Funds Project to Make Ancient Manuscripts Accessible (Kathy Brown, UCLA Library).
The Ahmanson Foundation has awarded a major grant to the UCLA Library to fund key aspects of the Sinai Library Digitization Project. This major project – initiated by the fathers of St. Catherine’s Monastery of the Sinai, Egypt, and made possible through the participation of the UCLA Library and the Early Manuscripts Electronic Library (EMEL) – will create digital copies of some 1,100 rare and unique Syriac and Arabic manuscripts dating from the fourth to the seventeenth centuries.

A UNESCO World Heritage site located in a region of the Sinai Peninsula sacred to three world religions – Christianity, Islam, and Judaism - St. Catherine’s Monastery houses a collection of ancient and medieval manuscripts second only to that of the Vatican Library. Access to these remarkable materials has often been difficult, and now all the more so due to security concerns in the Sinai Peninsula.

Past posts on the Early Manuscripts Electronic Library and its work at St Catherine's Monastery and elsewhere are here and here. For many other manuscript digitization projects, see here and here and links. And there's lots more on St. Catherine's Monastery, its manuscripts, and its current perilous circumstances here, here, and here and links.