Following an agreement between Jisc Collections and Gale, part of Cengage Learning, Part 2 of the ambitious digitisation project, Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO), is now available free of charge to all UK academic institutions currently subscribing to ECCO.
With 45,000 new titles selected from the English Short Title Catalogue, ECCO Part 2 adds close to seven million pages to the size of the collection - at no extra cost for subscribing institutions.
The new collection includes 96 new editions of Shakespeare, a unique edition of Allan Ramsay’s ‘Above Nine Hundred Scots Proverbs’ (Glasgow, 1781, from the Bodleian Library) and a new author (Joseph Fox) with his ‘Parish Clerk’s vade mecum’ arising from his work as parish clerk at St. Margaret’s, Westminster. As with Part 1, ECCO Part 2 includes almost 13,000 titles from British Library’s extensive holdings of eighteenth-century material – new additions include ‘A Catalogue of Vocal and Instrumental Music’ engraved, printed and sold by James Blundell in 1781 and a unique copy of ‘The Fairing: or, a Golden Toy’, a small illustrated book for children.
Joanna Innes, Fellow and Tutor in Modern History, Somerville College, Oxford University says, "ECCO is an amazingly rich resource. It puts a magnificent library of eighteenth-century printed material on the desktops of scholars and students. It vastly improves access; allows the scholar to discover new seams of material and gives students unprecedented access to masses of primary source material. And of course it supports new kinds of searching. It is very well presented and in general easy to use."
First released in 2003 and originally acquired by Jisc Collections in 2006, ECCO quickly established itself as the world’s largest digital library of the print book, with over 200,000 volumes of key 18th century works.
Since then, the English Short Title Catalogue has uncovered a wealth of valuable new material and new holdings of previously unavailable titles. The material in ECCO Part 2 includes both new titles that have been added to the ESTC as well as newly reported holdings information.
Scholars can delve into ancient and contemporary times, voyages and discoveries, biographies and memoirs in history and geography. They can also investigate how diseases were treated in medicine, look into science, technology and study other celebrated novelists, poets and playwrights in literature and language.
Those with a passion for social science and fine arts can look into international business, banking, taxation, music, painting, theatres and architecture. While those interested in law can follow its development throughout the British Empire. Institutions familiar with ECCO will find ECCO Part 2 has an increased emphasis on literature, social science and religion. Women’s writing is also well represented with more than 900 new works and editions by over 400 female authors including such influential writers as Mary Wollstonecraft and Elizabeth Inchbald. As with ECCO, most titles are in English, however scholars will also find material in French, German, Latin, Ancient Greek, Italian and Welsh. ECCO Part 2 offers the only copy in all ECCO of ‘Petit Code de la Raison Humaine’, given a London imprint, but probably printed in Paris, and dedicated to Benjamin Franklin (copy from the Library of Congress).
The new release includes an enhanced user interface with new features and contextual tools to make the database more accessible to students and valuable to advanced researchers. Institutions that already participate in the Jisc Collections ECCO agreement will have access to ECCO Part 2 and the new interface on August 1st, 2009 with no further action required on their part. Those wishing to switch earlier can request to do so by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, or to sign up visit.