The ICCU collaborates with librarian and university institutes in order to preserve and promote the manuscript heritage that is maintained in the Italian libraries. The ICCU has established and diffused the standards for bibliographic documentation and the cataloguing of manuscript books.
Two types of software have been carried out in order to implement the two aforementioned activities. The first is BibMan, which is structured as a bibliographic database pertaining to manuscripts. The second is MANUS, which is set up for their cataloguing.
Both products are available free of charge to institutions, organizations, corporations and individuals who request and ensure the periodic forwarding of their data to the ICCU.
For further information: Massimo Menna
BibMan is a software which permits the management of the manuscript bibliography in the Roman alphabet, which is in the possession of the Italian libraries.
The activities of about forty project participating libraries that until now have produced an archive containing nearly 11,000 records which contain over 50,000 cited manuscripts and about 70,000 citations.
An interface for librarians as well as an interface for the user is scheduled for every library collaborating with the bibliography publication. As opposed to the librarian, the user does not have bibliographic management capabilities enabled.
The new software version allows greater data entry and query capabilities as opposed to the preceding version. It’s also feasible to use Greek characters.
MANUS is the procedure assigned to the national Census of manuscripts in the possession of the Italian libraries. It permits thorough cataloguing and offers the option to manage images.
MANUS works both in stand alone mode as well as a local network.
The software was built with the objective of the uniform description of manuscripts based on the guide called, Guida a una descrizione uniforme dei manoscritti e al loro censimento. (Roma, ICCU 1990.)
Under the ALTRO heading within the software, the expected areas for a more thorough cataloguing which were not provided for in the first version, have been added. Furthermore, two descriptive fields have been inserted: Correspondence and Document Covers. The later field may be used in order to describe manuscript materials which do not always fit into the descriptive formats which are used for literary manuscripts.
Each library is provided with a Library installation which may be used by the librarian as well as an additional installation for researchers.
The software offers the capability to activate three types of queries:
The use of Roman, Greek, Hebrew and Arabic alphabet characters is also available.
The procedure allows the libraries to automatically produce the traditional catalogue in print and the index of the acquired manuscripts.
The XML layout has been written for the importation and exportation of data toward MANUS as well as toward other databases. It is currently awaiting validation from behalf of the Text Encoding Initiative Commission.