News at IU Bloomington: Newton Watermark Project Could Help Date Books More Accurately

Institute’s rare book curator is part of Indiana University-led research team using Isaac Newton’s alchemical manuscripts as a test case.

February 22, 2021

A team of American researchers is working with international partners on a project that could help scholars more accurately date manuscripts and early books. James R. Voelkel, curator of rare books and manuscripts in the Institute’s Othmer Library of Chemical History, serves as a co-director of “Digital Approaches to the Capture and Analysis of Watermarks Using the Manuscripts of Isaac Newton as a Test Case.” The Science History Institute is contributing five of Newton’s alchemical manuscripts to the project.

Led by Indiana University professor and Chymistry of Isaac Newton editor William R. Newman, the research project was recently awarded a New Directions for Digital Scholarship in Cultural Institutions grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the United Kingdom’s Arts and Humanities Research Council.

“Watermarks are very difficult to image, and modern technology will help make the process much more efficient,” Voelkel said, noting that the breadth of what the team is trying to accomplish remarkable. “In terms of dating things more accurately, this has a lot of potential.”

Read more at >>

More News


Science History Institute, Pittsburgh Conference to Present Pittcon Heritage Award to Philip J. Wyatt

Wyatt Technology founder to be recognized at 2024 conference in San Diego.

illustration of a man giving a lecture

Institute Launches New Science and Society Speaker Series

Nobel laureate Roald Hoffmann kicks off this engaging program with a talk on November 16, followed by an expert panel discussion on plastics on December 6.

Carolyn Bertozzi in 2022

Nobel Laureate Carolyn Bertozzi to Present Science History Institute’s 2023 Ullyot Lecture

Q&A session, award presentation, and reception to follow Stanford professor’s ‘Sweet Revenge on Cancer’ talk being held October 17.


    Copy the above HTML to republish this content. We have formatted the material to follow our guidelines, which include our credit requirements. Please review our full list of guidelines for more information. By republishing this content, you agree to our republication requirements.