BaTyR: a database for Renaissance typography

The typographical material used in older print documents is a key source of information for bibliographers, and as such it has been a focus of study by textual critics and cataloguers since the nineteenth century. The Base de Typographie de la Renaissance project, part of the Bibliothèques Virtuelles Humanistes (Virtual Humanist Libraries) programme, aims to draw up an extensive online database of the material used by printers across Europe from the fifteenth to the seventeenth centuries, freely accessible to researchers. The database framework is partly up and running: it can already be used for index searches and for material carved on wood or metal and will soon be extended to include cast material such as typefaces and fleurons. It is intended that the BaTyR database will eventually become a key reference tool for bibliographers and book historians.