The aims of this project encompass providing information and insights relevant to both the academic and the scholarly librarian communities, as well as involving knowledge exchange and public engagement.
- The remit of this project is to identify, catalogue and reunite in virtual form manuscript fragments
- To achieve this, the project aims, in discussion with manuscript cataloguers and rare book dealers, to identify and refine appropriate standards for cataloguing fragments and their 'lost manuscripts'
- The project's priority to make accessible fragments not previously catalogued and often 'hidden' within collections by providing descriptions and images of them, to the agreed standards
- The project's definition of relevant fragments is intentionally broad, with the significant limit being their present residence in the British Isles
- The aspiration is to include not only those in public collections but, where owners are willing, those in private hands, thus making available in virtual form other inaccessible elements of our heritage
- The intention is to raise public, as well as scholarly, awareness of fragments and the process of fragmentation
- There are two research outcomes expected from the accumulation of a substantial quantity of data. The first is to allow a reconstruction more detailed than has previously been possible of the processes of loss of manuscripts, particularly in early modern England
- The second outcome is to review our understanding of manuscript culture in the light of the fragmentary evidence, investigating how far it challenges existing perceptions of the range and balance of texts available