"The Conservation of Dante's 1477 Divine Comedy" - Jeff Peachey, Independent Book Conservator


Location: 102 Hesburgh Library, Rare Books and Special Collections (View on map )

One of the most important volumes of the Hesburgh Libraries’ renowned Zahm Dante collection, a 1477 edition of Dante’s Divine Comedy printed in Venice by Wendelin of Speyer, has recently undergone a major conservation treatment. This treatment uncovered evidence that the Inferno and Purgatory sections of the text may have circulated separately at one point. Considerations of 15th c. binding practices versus modern techniques will also be discussed, as well as the functional and aesthetic decisions for conservation rebinding.

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Dante Open Book

Jeff Peachey is an independent book conservator and toolmaker based in New York City. For more than 25 years, he has specialized in the conservation of books for institutions and individuals. He is a Professional Associate in the American Institute for Conservation, has taught book conservation workshops internationally, and was recently awarded fellowships from the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center (Italy) and Rochester Institute of Technology's Cary Collection (New York). He is a Visiting Instructor for the Library and Archives Conservation Education Consortium (LACE) of Buffalo State University, New York University, and the Winterthur/ University of Delaware. "Ausbund 1564: The History and Conservation of an Anabaptist Icon" is his latest publication. He grew up in Goshen, Indiana, and is a proud graduate of Goshen College.