Check out 14 great books in this gallery presented by the British Library. What will you find here? Leonardo’s Notebook, Jane Austen’s Early Work, The Original Alice, and those are just the featured sections. I clicked into Leonardo’s Notebook first and waited for it to load.
Let me say it right up front: this site is one of the more technology-demanding sites I’ve brought to you guys. I’m not sure how friendly it will be to slower connections. It may take up to a minute and you need the latest version of shockwave to see this site’s Turning the Pages format. If you don’t have the shockwave, it should ask you to install it. If you don’t want to install shockwave, you can still view three of the books and they’ll be adding more later on.
It’s worth the load time, believe me, because it isn’t every day that you get to see Leonardo da Vinci’s Notebook where you can turn the pages and magnify to see it up close. Navigation is at the bottom of the page. Use the arrows at the bottom of the page to turn the pages. You can also read and hear the text, and the magnify button gives you a large square magnifying glass to move over the area you want to enlarge.
Jane Austen’s The History of England is a very interesting read that pokes fun at the historical books of her time. I chose to listen to it rather than read it. Hearing it in a woman’s voice made me feel as though Jane was reading it.
I adored the Original Alice, a manuscript that was written for Alice by Charles Dodgson who later edited it and published Alice in Wonderland under the name Lewis Carroll. This is the original story with Dodgson’s own illustrations. The audio was superb. Listening to the audio content of the cover page and last page tell you how the manuscript made its way into the hand of the British Library and more about the photo at the end of the book.
You will also find excellent illustrations in the other sections. Classic of Botanical Illustration, Masterpiece of the Renaissance, Pinnacle of Anglo-Saxon Art are definitely worth checking out. I couldn’t find a section that I didn’t like here at this site. This site truly is a treasure to view.