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Grant number: PW-228135-15

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Chemical Heritage Foundation (Philadelphia, PA 19106-2702)
James R. Voelkel (Project Director: July 2014 to present)

Foundation Proposal for a Chymical Encyclopedia, Database, and Repository (CEDR)

Planning for a reference resource, and development of a prototype, on the theory and practice of chemistry in the medieval through early modern eras, which would contain historical chemistry terminology, encyclopedia entries, digitized primary texts, and demonstrations.

The project proposes the creation of a reference resource on chemical processes and terminology pre-dating modern chemical notation that will inform historians, conservators and any other humanists interested in the material culture of the past. We envision a encyclopedia with definitive descriptions of substances and processes, a database of out-of-use chymical terms; and a repository of digitized original sources. We propose primarily an international planning workshop to coordinate a wide range of stakeholders, ranging from historians of technology and science, art historians and conservators, and archaeologists, to historically sensitive chemists and mineralogists. The workshop will establish editorial guidelines, methodology, and scope. We also propose prototyping elements of the encyclopedia, database, and repository, including the digitization of Macquer's 5-volume Dictionnaire de chymie (1789) and a medieval recipe book known as the "Secreti naturali."

[White paper]

Project fields:
History and Philosophy of Science, Technology, and Medicine; History of Science

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources

Preservation and Access

Total amounts:
$39,457 (approved)
$38,065 (awarded)

Grant period:
7/1/2015 – 6/30/2017