Singing from a different Hymn sheet

‘While Shepherds Watched their Flocks by Night’ is one of the best-known Christmas carols. It is based on the Annunciation to the shepherds, as described in the Gospel of St Luke. An angel appeared to the shepherds in the fields outside Bethlehem and told them of the birth of Jesus in a scene that has …

A spoonful of spermaceti helps the medicine go down

It’s that time of year when coughs, colds and flu are doing the rounds.  But how did our ancestors cope with ill-health, before the days of ready-prepared pills and potions from the local shop? Manuscripts and Special Collections holds a number of works with useful recipes to be made at home – some possibly more efficacious …

The Sound of Lincolnshire Folk Song

The Lincolnshire Folk Song Collection was established in the early 1960s at Pilgrim College, Boston, Lincolnshire, and was transferred to Manuscripts and Special Collections in the 1990s. It has recently been given a new lease of life with the help of a student on a placement with us from the Department of Music, Lydia May. …

Fragments of a Saint

Tucked away in a bundle of 17th century natural history illustrations was a single page of comparatively plain-looking handwritten text that was obviously out of place. It began abruptly in the middle of a sentence and the edges were slightly more battered- not surprising, considering it was about 200 years older than the rest of the pages. …

Take a Gander at Goose Fair

The first week in October can only mean one thing: the annual Goose Fair has opened on the Forest Recreation Ground! Here are a few images of previous Goose Fairs, mainly taken from old picture postcards, to get you in the mood before you go.                 Originally fairs were …

It’s All Fun and Games

Did you play Snakes and Ladders, hopscotch and draughts as a child? The chances are you did, as did your grandparents, and possibly generations beyond that. These games are simple and fun, and for those reasons have become classic childhood staples. Many more games which have not survived the passage of time, for equally valid reasons. …

Pirates!

Ahoy there readers! No, this is not a post about digital piracy or illegal file sharing, but the sea-faring pirates of old, to mark that most frivolous of parody holidays, International Talk Like A Pirate Day. Originally started in America as an in-joke between friends, it has become an annual charity fundraising day, where participants …

Discovering John Achard

This is a guest post by UoN student Megan Shore about her CLAS student placement at Manuscripts and Special Collections in March-July 2016. I did a work placement in Manuscripts and Special Collections in the last semester of my final year. I heard about the placement from the employability team in the School of Cultures …

Happy birthday KMC!

Happy 10th birthday to us! Ten years ago today, the Reading Room at The University of Nottingham’s then-newest campus at King’s Meadow welcomed its first visitors. The Basement     Since 1973, Manuscripts & Special Collections had been based in the lower level of Hallward Library on University Park Campus. The lack of space had been a …

Beyond the Reading Room: Document Production

It’s 10 years this month that Manuscripts & Special Collections moved to King’s Meadow Campus! Many people have visited the Reading Room over the years, but this is only a small part of the department. As part of the celebrations, we’re giving you a look at what goes on Beyond the Reading Room, continuing with… …