Monday, March 09, 2009

Not a Total Loss at Cologne has a report from the scene of the archive collapse at Cologne, where they have recovered over 100 medieval books and over 200 folders with manuscript fragments. I don't like the sound of this, though:
...other manuscripts were found wet and needed to be shock frozen so they could be treated and preserved at another location...

While I'm guessing freezing isn't exactly the best thing for the health of a manuscript, it's a darn sight better than sitting in a puddle under a heap of rubble.


  1. Anonymous10:38 AM

    For paper, freezing is the recommended treatment in a disaster situation -- it stops whatever deterioration has begun, and allows you to deal with each piece carefully at a later time. Ask your local librarian. :-)

  2. A commenter on Heavenfield gave me some relieve that Cologne MS106 containing a collection of Bede's works compiled by Alcuin for Bishop Arno of Salzburg, though copied in Cologne, is safe. It was kept in the Cologne cathedral library and has already been digitized. I suspect a lot of Anglo-Saxon manuscripts might be in the Cathedral library since so many have religious themes.