250,000 antique books to go online

Works dating from between 1700 and 1870 will be digitised, offered on Google Books

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250,000 antique books to go online Over 250,000 books from between 1700 and 1870 will be digitised and published online.
By  Georgina Enzer Published  June 21, 2011

The British Library and Google have made a deal to put approximately 250,000 antique books online. The books date from between 1700 and 1870 and are all out of copyright, according to the Press Association.

Two of the first works to be digitised and published online are a pamphlet about French Queen Marie Antoinette and Spanish inventor Narciso Monturiol's 1858 plans for one of the world's first submarines.

"In the 19th century it was an ambition of our predecessors to give everybody access to as much of the world's information as possible, to ensure that knowledge was not restricted to those who could afford private libraries. The way of doing it then was to buy books from the entire world and to make them available in reading rooms. We are delighted to be partnering with Google on this project and through this partnership believe that we are building on this proud tradition of giving access to anyone, anywhere and at any time. Our aim is to provide perpetual access to this historical material, and we hope that our collections coupled with Google's know-how will enable us to achieve this aim," Library chief executive Dame Lynne Brindley told the Press Association.

The digitized antique works will be available online at Google Books and on the British Library's website.

"What's powerful about the technology available to us today isn't just its ability to preserve history and culture for posterity, but also its ability to bring it to life in new ways. This public domain material is an important part of the world's heritage and we're proud to be working with the British Library to open it up to millions of people in the UK and abroad," said Peter Barron, director of external relations at Google.

2250 days ago
Vinod Mehra

Readers delight....
Thank you Google and The British Library

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