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WRONG NOTES: a blog of ear reverence

Wrong Notes collects posts on music, art, culture and fun stuff. Also included: news about the Ear Reverends.

British Library’s William Blake’s notebook

I am enjoying looking through William Blake's notebook online, seeing his drawing and where he wrote "The Tygre."

The British Library is currently exhibiting William Blake's notebook, and they now have it online as a virtual book, in their Turning the Pages™ viewer. (Go to that page and click the link to "William Blake's Notebook" to view it.)

The virtual book viewer is a bit unfortunate—it's pretty hard to use a computer mouse to simulate the physical motion required to turn the page of an actual book. (That will make more sense if you go try it yourself.) But, that said, it's more generally awesome that you can see each page of the notebook, magnify it and look at small details, and then there are also text and audio annotations / commentary that one can bring-up.

(There are also non-virtual / web / accessible versions of the books, which I'd normally link to out of principle, e.g., The Notebook of William Blake. But, having personally braved the technological oxymoron of the virtual book, I think these are the rare cases where it's worth it—you get much more of a "wow, they wrote that by hand, right there" feeling than in the web / accessible versions.)

Currently, there are actually 18 different books available via Turning the Pages, including Mozart's musical diary (which also has musical-audio annotations) and Lewis Carroll's original hand-written and illustrated Alice's Adventures Under Ground, which is especially cool to see!


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