Presidential Address

JAMES RAVEN: Monsters, myths and methods: towards a global book biography of Erik Pontoppidan’s Det første Forsøg paa Norges naturlige Historie (1752 –3) [The Natural History of Norway (1755)]. What are the bibliographical implications of a ‘book biography’ (or the ‘life cycle of a book’)? Pontoppidan’s observations on giant sea monsters reappeared in Moby Dick and influenced modern sightings, writings and films around the world. Examination of surviving copies of the different editions of the Natural History (including those owned by Benjamin Franklin, Edward Gibbon and the Maharajah of Tangore), suggests how its ‘verification’ methods were modulated by different translations and inherited representations—but also by typographies, engravings and other material book forms.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022 - 17:30
Society of Antiquaries, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BE,