Creating new narratives

New research and new narratives are created by each new generation at the University of Glasgow. The narratives of past generations may convey the values of the University of Glasgow today. But they may not.

Reappraising research materials

The Historical Slavery Initiative is a very public demonstration of who we are today. Reappraising the valuable research materials accumulated by previous generations, especially collections acquired with the profits from slavery, could help us to understand where we have come from as a community.  What will be said about this initiative when the University celebrates its 600th birthday in 2051?

Creating new narratives

Case study 1

Impossible, 1536

The Centre Directors are discussing an image from this book in the Stirling Maxwell Collection

Title: Livret des emblemes, de maistre Andre Alciat, mis en rime francoyse.
Author: Alciati, Andrea, 1492-1550.
Published: Paris : En la maison de Chrestien Wechel, 1536.
Call Number (print book): Sp Coll S.M. 23b
Digital edition of the bookFrench Emblems: Alciato, Andrea: Livret des emblemes (1536) (

More information about this image: French Emblems: Facsimile Page

Case study 2

The power of Louis XIV, 1660s

The Centre Directors are discussing an image from this book in the Stirling Maxwell Collection.

Title: Courses de testes et de bague faittes par le Roy, et par les princes et seigneurs de sa cour, en l'année 1662.
Author:  Perrault, Charles, 1628-1703.
Published: Paris : Imprimerie Royale, 1670.
Call number: Sp Coll S.M. 2024;


Case study 3

Medieval values 1400s

The Centre Directors are discussing an image from this book in the Stirling Maxwell Collection

Title: Astrolabium planu[m] in tabulis ascendens co[n]tinens qualibet hora atq[ue] mi[nu]to. : Equationes domoru[m] celi. Mora[m] nati in vtero matris cu[ius] quoda[m] tractatu natiuitatu[m] vtili ac ornato. Nec no[n] horas inequales [pro] quolibet climate mundi..
Author: Angelus, Johannes, 1463-1512.
Published: [Augsburg]: Erhardi Ratdolt Auguste[n]sis ..., Vigesimoseptimo kalendas Nouembris. M.cccc.lxxxviij. [i.e. 6 October? or 27 November? 1488]
Call number: Sp Coll S.M. 104
Digital edition of this volume: Angelus, Johannes: Astrolabium

Case study 4

Constructions of ethnicity 1800s

The Centre Directors are discussing an item collected by Glasgow lawyer David Murray (1842-1928), a noted antiquary and bibliographer. Murray was particularly interested in social history and ephemeral print in at is likely someone else collected and compiled the volume of lottery “puffs” (advertisements) which he subsequently purchased. The volume was gifted to the University along with the rest of Murray’s library in 1927.

Title:  [Lotteries; collection of leaflets, etc. advertising lotteries].
Published:  [London, 1817-21]
Call number: Sp Coll Mu55-f.17

Download: ephemeral lottery advertisements (pdf 50.8Mb)
This is an untitled volume collecting together ephemeral early nineteenth-century UK state lottery advertisements. The adverts seem to have been published between 1817 and 1821. It includes single sheet adverts, often with illustrations and eye-catching verse, issued by state lottery contractors including T. Bish, pasted into a blank volume. Its shelfmark is: Sp Coll Mu55-f.17.

If you require further information please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Case study 5

Women’s work, Early 17th century

The Centre Directors are discussing this book from the Ferguson Collection:

Title: Atalanta fugiens, hoc est, emblemata nova de secretis naturæ chymica...
Author: Maier, Michael.
Published: Oppenheimii, 1618.
Call number (printed book): Sp Coll Ferguson Ar-f.16

Download: Emblemata Nova (pdf 79.1 Mb)
This is an early printed book “Atlanta fugiens, hoc est emblemata nova” by Michael Maier published in 1618. It includes emblems accompanied by woodcut images. Its shelfmark is: Sp Coll Ferguson Ar-f.16.

If you require further information please contact Archives and Special Collections.