Welcome to Alciato at Glasgow. This website gives you access to twenty-two editions of the emblems of Andrea Alciato (1492-1550), the pater et princeps of the emblem genre. The editions date from 1531 to 1621, in the original Latin, and in French, German, Italian, and Spanish versions.

Alciato at Glasgow

The site has been developed as an extension of the earlier French Emblems at Glasgow site, which was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council under the Resource Enhancement Scheme. The Alciato site has benefitted from generous funding from the British Academy.

All books digitised are from the Stirling Maxwell Collection in Glasgow University Library.

Four of the Alciato editions also feature on the French Emblems at Glasgow site; the Italian edition of 1551, also features on the The Study and Digitisation of Italian Emblems website, also based in the University of Glasgow.

The Project was undertaken within the OpenEmblem initiative. The Glasgow data are now incorporated in Emblematica Online hosted at the University of Illinois.

There are 22 browsable emblem books, in which the original Alciato texts are available in both transcribed and facsimile versions, although the longer, non-authorial commentaries of 1591, 1615, and 1621 are available only in facsimile. Apart from its index, the paratextual material of the 1621 edition, has not been transcribed. Extensive search functionality is provided.


You may also search the index of the 1621 edition.

Related Material:

Prepared and made available by Denis Drysdall:

Prepared and made available by Mason Tung:

These tables revise Mason Tung's seminal work on Alciato's emblems, and complement the work of Denis Drysdall.


Mason Tung's Variorum edition of Alciato

Navigation and Searching:

Full instructions about how to explore the site can be found here.

General Bibliography:

Some secondary bibliographical details are given for each book digitised. Central to the study of Alciato are:

Henry Green, Andrea Alciati and his books of emblems : a biographical and bibliographical study (London: Trübner, 1872)

William S Heckscher, The Princeton Alciati companion: a glossary of neo-Latin words and phrases used by Andrea Alciati and the emblem book writers of his time, including a bibliography of secondary sources relevant to the study of Alciati's emblems (New York: Garland, 1989)

Andrea Alciato, Emblemata, Lyons, 1550. Translated and annotated by Betty I. Knott, with an introduction by John Manning (Aldershot: Scolar Press, 1996)

Andreas Alciatus, 1. The Latin Emblems, Indexes and Lists (Index Emblematicus), ed. Peter M. Daly with Virginia W. Callahan, assisted by Simon Cuttler (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1985).

Mason Tung , 'Towards a new Census of Alciati's Editions', Emblematica 4 (1989), 135-176 (updated in SES Newsletter 46 (January 2010): 26-29 [http://german.lss.wisc.edu/~smoedersheim/newsletter.htm]).

Project Staff:

Alison Adams, Brian Aitken, Graeme Cannon, Stephen Rawles, Joanna Royle, Gillian Smith, David Weston.


Alongside the Project's own staff, we must acknowledge especially the debt we owe to our international collaborators, Peter Boot, Hans Brandhorst, Etienne Posthumus, Yassu Okayama-Frossati, and Johan Tilstra. Thanks are also due to Denis Drysdall, Helen Durndell,Debbie Goldie, Trevor Graham, Henry Heaney, Peter Holmes, Betty Knott-Sharpe, Linda Knox, Stephen McCann, Donato Mansueto, Elizabeth Moignard, Kate Nimmo, Noel Peacock, Niki Pollock, Richard Rawles, Seamus Ross, Jonathan Spangler, Arnoud Visser, Andrew Wale, as well as the University of Glasgow more generally for infrastructural support, especially the Faculty of Arts and Glasgow University Library Special Collections Department.


We welcome constructive feedback; please e-mail: Alison.Adams@glasgow.ac.uk


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