Cover of Emblem bookEmblem books were popular during the 16th and 17th centuries. Woodcuts or engravings (the “emblems”) pictured moral tales or allegories, accompanied by a mottoor brief sentence. One of the most famous and influential of those creating emblem books was the Italian Andrea Alciati, a teacher at the University of Bouiges. His “Emblemata” were heavily influential in Europe for 200 years. Our Rare Book Room collection houses two editions, one published in 1544, and one in 1621.

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