As previously noted on this blog, our Rylands copy of Blake’s stunningly illustrated Night Thoughts has now been fully digitised and is available to view online. This item, along with a second Blake work, a set of original engravings fashioned to illustrate the Book of Job (1825) form part of a collaborative academic digitisation project led by The John Rylands Library: William Blake in Manchester “Among those dark, satanic mills”. This project has been keenly supported by the University’s School of Arts, Histories and Cultures and by the Whitworth Art Gallery and it is hoped that digitisation will provide scholarly and public access to two items of immense cultural value whilst simultaneously preserving them for future generations.
We are now happy to announce that the second Blake volume in this project, the Book of Job, a collection of Blake’s engravings detailing the sufferings of the biblical figure are now live online. These engravings are a rich, complex and densely layered collection of artworks and we are very lucky to have had the metadata descriptions for these engravings supplied by former Manchester University student Simon Spier. Simon has provided a meticulously detailed interpretation of each of the engravings which serve to further enhance this wonderful resource for our online users.