The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.1669  Saturday, 1 October 2005

From: 		Duncan Salkeld <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date: 		Friday, 30 Sep 2005 13:36:40 +0100
Subject: 	Bridewell and Bethlem

Listmembers may be interested to know that the Bethlem Royal Hospital 
Archives and Museum have just made available online digitized images of 
the Archives of the Bridewell and Bethlem Hospitals. These are free to 
use, and may be downloaded, saved and printed at any time.

The website address is http://bethlemheritage.org.uk/

For a shortcut to the Bridewell and Bethlem Court of Governors' Minute 
Books, click on the following address:


 From here, you can click on the 'Image' link on the right-hand side of 
the screen, and thereafter leaf through each Minute Book, choosing 
either 'Read' or 'Enlarge' options.

The 'Enlarge' function will make almost any entry legible for most readers.

Navigating the Bethlem Heritage website can be a little tricky for first 
time users. An Archives page at 
http://bethlemheritage.org.uk/archives.html explains the kind of 
material accessible online, or held at the Museum itself.

A trial version of the catalogue is available at 

 From this page, you can navigate to the Minute Books via the 'Gallery' 
link. Click on the 'Source Item' link and this will take you to a full 
catalogue page from which you may select the material according to date, 
and proceed to 'Images'.

This resource is a remarkable gift to the scholarly community, making 
widely and freely available a vast range of fascinating and valuable 
material hitherto difficult to access. The possibilities for its use in 
the classroom and for research are limitless.

Academic studies related to these materials include Ian Archer, The 
Pursuit of Stability: Social Relations in Elizabethan London (Cambridge, 
1991); William S. Carroll, Fat King, Lean Beggar: Representations of 
Poverty in the Age of Shakespeare (Cornell, 1996); and Paul Griffiths, 
'Overlapping Circles: Imagining Criminal Communities in London, 
1545-1645', in Alexandra Shepard and Philip Withington (eds), 
Communities in Early Modern England (Manchester, 2000), pp.115-33, and 
'Contesting London Bridewell, 1576-1580', Journal of British Studies 42 
(July 2003), 283-315.

Duncan Salkeld

S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
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