Philippe Schmid

Dukedom Large Enough: Renaissance Self-Fashioning and the Crisis of the Learned Book Market in the 17th century

My dissertation studies book collecting practices in the 17th century as a form of early modern self-fashioning. It brings a data approach to the history of social identities, and uses material as well as cultural evidence. I will concentrate on quantitative data from auction and library catalogues, but also consider portraits, bookbindings and library tracts. The collection of Duke August of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel (1579–1666) offers rich evidence for early modern collecting habits, as well as the market for learned books in the 17th century. I will study his collection from a market perspective, preparing a dataset of his collection of books. This will be complemented by studies of other book collectors from the centers and peripheries of the Holy Roman Empire.