Anybody up for a flash-mob?

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Anybody up for a flash-mob?

jan 2, 2015, 2:53 pm

Who's up for a flash-mob cataloging project?

I've been hunting around for possible subjects. Here's one that I just came across:

Catalogue of the Library of the Hon. East India Company (1845)

There are also some options from previous rounds:

Jared Sparks -

Theodore Low De Vinne -

Any interest?

jan 2, 2015, 2:54 pm

I'm in.

Redigerat: jan 2, 2015, 2:58 pm

Cool. Any preference, or are you game for whatever?

ETA - if anyone's got another good candidate, please suggest away!

jan 2, 2015, 5:39 pm

You can count me in. Any of these would be OK, with a slight preference for either East India or De Vinne.

jan 3, 2015, 3:46 pm

The East India Co. looks like a great option, but I'm in for any of them.

Redigerat: jun 21, 2021, 7:46 am

Okay, I've set up a wiki at - most of the sections are really short, so should be good fun. Some of the titles are fairly tricky, so that should up the complexity a bit nonetheless, heh (and the languages section in particular is kind of complicated in its organization). Let's use this thread for discussion/questions.

jan 4, 2015, 12:47 am

So, first book to enter, first question. That's pretty normal isn't it?

The first book I'm looking at is listed as "Travels in New Zealand. 2vols. 8vo" Is there any convention how to list 2 volumes? I'm thinking Travels in New Zealand vol.1 and Travels in New Zealand vol.2 unless there is a better/preferred method.

jan 4, 2015, 9:22 am

Since it's just a set, you can just add a single record and note 2 in the "Volumes" field.

jan 5, 2015, 2:41 am

>8 JBD1: Thanks, I've only just noticed the Volumes field.

jan 5, 2015, 7:24 am

>8 JBD1: Great tip, never new there was a volume field. Does it add up? I mean does the system recognise if I write two in the volume field will it show up as one record or two records in total books?

jan 5, 2015, 7:34 am

>9 EastIndiaCompany:/10 - It counts in volumes, yes (but not in titles, since both volumes correctly belong to the same title). So it's doing what it should do :-)

Redigerat: aug 22, 2015, 5:34 pm

I'm chipping away at this library and have come across something of a puzzle in the following entry:

Lengle, Notices des manuscrits des ouvrages tartars-mantchoux de la bibliotheque national, etc. vis. Rituel des Mantchoux, et Dictionarium latino-sinico-Mantchou. 4to, N.D.

My suspicion is this may be a collection of prospectuses, offprints, or a Sammelband. I can't find a satisfying OCLC records for something like this, and the complete title doesn't appear in the author's catalog ( The fact that this is a quarto makes it a little more curious, since my experience with offprints etc. is that the vast majority are 8vo.

The titles referred to (Rituel des Mantchoux and Dictionarium Latino-Sinico-Mantchou) are both known titles with their own separate bibliographic information, but my limited grasp of French is telling me that this is not simply both complete titles in one volume. The Dictionarium seems to only exist as part of a series within the Notices...

For now I will the book as it appears in the catalog, but I was wondering if there was a way to more explicitly describe the likely composition of the contents.

Ok, I think I've figured this out. The Notices was a collection of articles with multiple authors spanning a number of volumes, and the titles noted, "Dictionarium" and "Rituel" were included.

My question now is, is this entry indicating that the entire set was in the possession of the company, or were the offprints disbound or what?

The catalog of the Bibliotheque Nationale with the offending titles: (

It appears this is saying that the "Dictionary" section is found in T V, p. 581-606 of the Notices and "Rituel" is T. VII, I, p. 241-308.

If someone knows a little French perhaps they could help me figure this out? Does the "vis." indicate that these titles are all there are, or that they are the titles of primary interest within the collection? I assume I should catalog this as one item and then include the weirdness in the comments?

This entire collection has been something of an exercise in bibliographic sleuthing. Lots of fun but slow going.

aug 22, 2015, 5:26 pm

>12 bokai: - Heh, that's always the way!

mar 16, 2021, 5:16 pm

There are a few books that I could not find. For The History of India.
Page 18
Indien Encyclepedia
Det Brittiska Riket 1839
Narritive of events-Bombay and Bengal ( kept saying all searches failed)

Page 19
History of India-Hindoo
Goorkha war on India (another search failed)

page 20
History of jounpoor

Page 21
Lord (same book is suggested by another author Thor)
Mahratta chiefs
Mahratta War

page 22
Malcolm political and report

page 23
penhoen Vol 1 (not found) but have all the other vols
2nd prinsep-History
San Roman

page 24
thorn ( Lake Lord Mem.)

everything says search failed after selection atleast 10 different search engines. idk if its because of the weather or Its really not available.

Redigerat: mar 16, 2021, 6:05 pm

>14 veatch2014: - oh gosh. It looks like a lot of what you've been adding is modern reprint editions instead of the actual editions from the library; these will need to be edited to match the correct editions. Please do try to add the actual editions (either from search or manually using a WorldCat record). Better to leave them unadded if you can't find the actual edition than to add the reprint editions, which just make the catalog confusing (since obviously the East India Company didn't have an edition from 2010 in its 1845 library, &c.).

Again, I don't want to dampen enthusiasms, but since we actually have the edition-level data for this library, we do want to be able to capture it accurately so that the LT catalog is as useful as possible.

mar 17, 2021, 3:42 pm

>15 JBD1: ok I was about to ask you about world cat. I was able to find some of the books on there but wasn't sure how to get them from there to here. I will figure that out and go from there. I fixed the ones I added. Most of the books listed I could not find the actual 1845 edition. Hopefully, I can find it on World cat.

Redigerat: maj 16, 2021, 1:16 am

I would suggest if you can't find the actual edition, make note of it here and don't add the title. I have the paid access to OCLC records and can typically find any book as long as it is in there, and I will go through and add anything that was missed. The thing is that this bibliography uses alternative spelling, non exact titles, and other things, so you really have to spend some time with each title to make sure you are actually putting the correct record into the library. Worldcat is actually very messy, so digging up the proper record can sometimes be a pain.

The way I do it is: search on world cat (or OCLC ideally, which is just a more powerful worldcat) find the institution that actually has the book, and then in librarything search that institution's catalog specifically.

If it's not in OCLC google the full title and author and see if you can find a digital copy which will provide you with what you need for manually entering the catalog, but that is a last resort.

I forgot to also mention that the English Short Title Catalog will have the info of almost everything printed in the UK prior to 1800.

maj 16, 2021, 2:01 am

>14 veatch2014: I've filled in the missing titles for page 18 and will work on the rest later if someone doesn't beat me to it.

Redigerat: maj 30, 2021, 10:30 pm

History of India through Page 20 has been checked now and all books are in.

A couple things to note

Please be extra careful that every title is added. I found a number of books that were not added in addition to the ones listed above, mostly titles that already had a book from the same author included. There is usually no one going over our work so if you miss books they may never be properly added. Please don't mark any section complete unless everything is in.

The "8vo" that you see at the end of many entries does not mean that the title has 8 volumes, but that the book is in octavo format, aka about the size of a modern hard cover book. We can include that it is an octavo in the notes, but shouldn't be changing the cataloging to indicate that there are 8 volumes in this case.

Edit: Page 21 is checked and all books are in.
Page 22 is checked.
Page 23 is checked.

All the books in the History of India section have now been checked and entered.

Redigerat: jun 20, 2021, 7:22 pm

I'm working on the Bibles section now and have a quick question.

The catalog lists the books of the bibles in English, but it appears for at least of a few of them the titles are actually written in the target language.

Is there a preference for the format in which the titles should be entered? The exact transliteration of the title (Which I may not always have) or the less exact but more legible to English readers "Bible in \language\"?

jun 21, 2021, 7:49 am

>20 bokai: - good question. Can you give a fer-instance? Generally I'd say if you can find a WorldCat record for what's listed in the catalog, go with that? But if you've got a good example, we can puzzle through it ...

jun 21, 2021, 10:39 pm

The worldcat entries are erratic for books of this age, and the EIC catalog is as vague as they can get away with. Sometimes there are multiple records for the same copy in which different catalogers have gone with different titles.

With this title for example

Is listed in the catalog as only "New Testament, translated into the Pushtoo Language. 8vo. Serampore, 1818" There's about a dozen OCLC records with slightly different titles that could qualify, and with this one I ended up asking one of the libraries to scan me the title page just so I could figure out what was going on.

I found a few records that put the transliterated title first and then followed up with a "=" and English brief translation, and went with that for similar titles. Here are a couple examples.

The problem is that it's difficult to confirm whether or not any of these titles are taken direct from the title pages of books or whether a certain amount of leeway was taken for the title. They're also pretty unwieldy because I can't determine where the title should be truncated, since I don't know the language.

Since asking this question I decided to stop messing around and picked up a copy of Darlow & Moule's Catalog of Printed Editions of the Holy Bible so generally I'm hewing to the exact titles as they appear there now. But in cases where the titles are not in Roman characters at the moment I've been sticking to whatever appears in the OCLC records, and then appending the English title of the Book being translated at the end. If you can think of a better way to do it I'm all ears.

jun 21, 2021, 11:17 pm

Here's another good example -

Both these records are almost certainly the same book.

I imported the first record mainly because the British Reference Library doesn't come up with LT searches, and if it's a true transliteration it would be more complete, but the title in the second is maybe more readable.

jun 22, 2021, 7:17 am

>22 EastIndiaCompany: >23 EastIndiaCompany: - Yeah, I think you're doing exactly what I would do (and have done in similar cases). Unless somebody else has different ideas, I'd say carry on and godspeed! :-)