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Recent Acquisitions

Our active collecting activities each year bring to the Newberry far more books, manuscripts, and maps than can be highlighted or even listed here. From among the arrivals of recent years, we present a selection that exemplifies our collecting today.

Christinae Suecorum Gothorum

Christinae Suecorum Gothorum Vandalorumque Reginae...

Catholic Church. Christina, Queen of Sweden.

VAULT Case BS2485 .C34 1519

A Polyglot publication of verse and calligrams welcoming Christina’s arrival in Rome. It includes printing in Latin, Greek, Hebrew and Arabic. A spectacular example of typography produced by the Congregatio de Propaganda Fide, founded in 1622 in the wake of the Counter-Reformation to compete with Protestant missions around the world. Complements the Newberry’s rich collections of Counter-Reformation printing.

New and Elegant Imperial Sheet Atlas

New and Elegant Imperial Sheet Atlas

Robert Laurie and James Whittle

Baskes oversize G 1015 .N48 1800

The “imperial” in the title refers not to that part of the world on which the sun never sets, but to the majestic size of the paper on which the maps are printed. “Imperial” was a British paper size larger than “Elephant” but not so large as “Double demy;” in fact, a sheet about 22 x 30 inches. The ample canvas, together with fine engraving, made possible very detailed maps, of the British Empire and the rest of the world. This copy has been beautifully colored by hand.

“Vive la France et l’Amerique.”

“Vive la France et l’Amerique.”

Françoise de Velisle

Clay Judson Papers – Additions

Nine-year old Françoise de Velisle presented her colored pencil and ink drawing to American Expeditionary Force officer Clay Judson at July 4th celebrations in a nearby French town. Judson enclosed it in a letter about the festivities to his mother, Alice Clay Judson of Chicago, noting: “Yesterday we had one of the most touching celebrations I’ve ever witnessed. France literally opened her arms to America – and this was shown not only by official actions but by the individuals.” The letter and drawing are part of a major addition to the library’s Clay Judson Papers.

Jean Calvin’s Institutes

Jean Calvin

Case BX 9420 .I58 1576

This is the first edition printed in England of Jean Calvin’s Institutes in the original Latin. In its earliest recension, the Institutes were published in Basel in 1536; the first English-languge edition was printed in London in 1561. Our copy has been copiously annotated by an anonymous sixteenth-century reader. Sixteenth- and seventeenth-century books with contemporary reader notes are by virtue of our online catalog easily retrievable. The Newberry has a number of sixteenth-century editions of Calvin’s Institutes with similar annotations.

The child’s companion and juvenile instructor

Case AP 200 .C48

The Religious Tract Society was founded in 1799 as a publisher that issued religious tracts throughout England. Its aim was to promote literacy, religion, and appropriate behavior among the “lower classes.” The Society soon added material for children to its publication list, reprinting tracts by Hannah More and other 18th-century writers who composed works for young readers. This early juvenile periodical was issued monthly from 1846 to 1921 and contained stories with a heavy dose of moral instruction along with attractive woodcuts.

Latin Vulgate Bible

Vault Case MS 216

The production of portable Latin Bibles was standardized at the University of Paris in about 1235, and these Parisian Bibles, with their conventional order of Biblical books and specific form of modern chapter division, subsequently became models for small-format Bibles copied throughout France in the mid-thirteenth century.


Claudius Ptolemaeus

Vault Baskes G 1005 1540

The Newberry already owned two copies of the 1540 Sebastian Münster edition of Ptolemy’s Geography, but in the way of books in the hand-printed era, there were slight differences between them. This third “copy,” donated by Roger Baskes, differs markedly from the other two.

Caleb Wright. Historic incidents and life in India (Chicago: J.A. Brainerd, 1869).

Historic incidents and life in India

Caleb Wright

Case DS421 .W748 1869

This rare travel and description narrative is another pre-Fire Chicago imprint from the Lane Theological Seminary, new to the Newberry's holdings. This is a rare example of a pre-Fire imprint publisher's black cloth binding and "Illustrated by numerous engravings." The preface states that the information contained in this volume has been collected by personal research and extensive travel in India and by compilation from authentic sources.