News from London’s Wellcome Library:
The Wellcome Library’s first venture into full-text digitization is underway with the 74 17th-century and earlier manuscripts from their collection of receipt (recipe) books. These contain household medicinal and culinary recipes, usually written by women. The project will not only digitize the manuscripts cover to cover, but create a rich index to level of individual recipes. These images are freely available via the Archives and Manuscripts catalogue in early 2009.
Above: Grace Acton’s recipe collection. 1621
“The pages of recipe books often contain a disconcerting mix of culinary and medical recipes. Here a flamboyant recipe for roasting a peacock and serving it up in its skin, feathers and all, is followed by an unappetizing cure for bed-wetting involving mouse boiled in urine.” Wellcome Library ref. MS.1, f.2r