Thomas Gray Archive: Now Searchable Through 18thConnect is thrilled to announce that the Thomas Gray Archive is now fully searchable and accessible through This remarkable project offers a peer-reviewed digital archive and a constantly improving research project devoted to the eighteenth-century poet, letter-writer, and scholar.

Thomas Gray (1716-1771) was an author of lyric and dramatic poems, humor, satire, works of translation, letters, and more. A polymath, traveler and antiquarian, his interests included literature, philosophy, history, sciences, architecture, art, geography and travel.

The Thomas Gray Archive contains high-quality, full-text versions of Gray’s poetry, selected prose works, and 18th-century editions of his works and letters. In addition to texts by the author, the Archive also provides a useful set of tools and resources for the Gray scholar, including a concordance, finding aid, digital library, glossary, and much more.

While the Archive presently contains a sizeable collection, it also has plans for growing through its dedication to collaboration between individuals and institutions. Users of the Archive can not only browse and search texts, they can also contribute their own notes and queries. In addition, the Archive uses standards and formats that ensure accessibility and preservation, such as METS, MODS, TEI, and EAD.

The archive was founded in 2000 with the mission of facilitating collaboration and supporting the study, research, and teaching of Gray’s life and works. The archive was co-founded by Reimer Eck and Alexander Huber. Huber is also the archive’s editor.

Have a question about the Thomas Gray Archive? You can e-mail them at or visit their website at

September Roundup! Needlework and Fashion in the 18th Century

This month’s roundup features primary sources related to fiber arts and clothing manufacture in the 18th century. From sourcing the materials for fabric dyeing and weaving to the purchase and upkeep of the finished product, textile production and circulation provides a fascinating point of entry to 18th-century studies. These works give a closer look at art, culture, science, and even economics in the 18th century.      

The social, cultural, and economic importance of cloth and clothing is demonstrated in surprising places. For instance, the Old Bailey’s transcript of Will Norman’s trial for Grand Larceny in 1743 sheds some insight into types of clothing worn, their potential desirability as a commodity in the 18th century, and sample prices of items such as “three Cambrick Aprons,” “five Holland shirts,” and “three Sheets.”

Transcript of Will Norman's Trial
(Pictured Above: Transcript of Will Norman’s Trial)

As innovation in the fabric and clothing industry drove colonial expansion and exploration, writers in the fields of science, technology, and manufacturing composed handbooks and manuals to aid craftsmen in cultivating and processing a vast array of materials. Philip Miller’s 1758 The Method of Cultivating Madder includes instructions for cultivating, drying, and manufacturing madder, including technical drawings and diagrams to assist others.


The Method of Cultivating Madder
(Pictured Above: The Method of Cultivating Madder)

Such manuals were not limited to large-scale manufacturing, however.  Béat-Antoine-François Hennezel’s 1776 Traité Des Différentes Espèces de Tapisseries (Treatise on the different types of tapestries) provides useful information for the domestic weaver, including design tips, color choices, and the varieties and uses of various threads.

Frontmatter to Traites des Tapisseries
(Pictured Above: Frontmatter to Traites des Tapisseries)

As Hennezel’s address to the reader (“À Madame!”) suggests, the creation, alteration, and upkeep of clothing was often the purview of female craftsman, artisans, and homemakers, and many 18th century literary works were dedicated to the elevation and celebration of this domestic responsibility.

Please see the gallery below for further examples of primary sources we’ve rounded up this month as well as a sampler of relevant journal articles that can be found through

September Roundup Gallery:

Further Reading from

Burnham, Michelle. “Trade, Time, and the Calculus of Risk in Early Pacific Travel Writing.” Early American Literature 46, no. 3 (2011): 425–47.

Cage, E. Claire. “The Sartorial Self: Neoclassical Fashion and Gender Identity in France, 1797-1804.” Eighteenth-Century Studies 42, no. 2 (2009): 193–215.

Castro, Wendy Lucas. “Stripped: Clothing and Identity in Colonial Captivity Narratives.” Early American Studies 6, no. 1 (2008): 104–36.

Chrisman, Kimberly. “Unhoop the Fair Sex: The Campaign Against the Hoop Petticoat in Eighteenth-Century England.” Eighteenth-Century Studies 30, no. 1 (1996): 5–23.

Hiner, Susan. “Lust for ‘Luxe’: ‘Cashmere Fever’ in Nineteenth-Century France.” Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies 5, no. 1 (2005): 76–98.

Lindberg, Anna Lena. “Through the Needle’s Eye: Embroidered Pictures on the Threshold of Modernity.” Eighteenth-Century Studies 31, no. 4 (1998): 503–10.

Miller, Marla R. “The Last Mantuamaker: Craft Tradition and Commercial Change in Boston, 1760—1845.” Early American Studies 4, no. 2 (2006): 372–424.

“Patterns – The Lady’s Magazine: Understanding the Emergence of a Genre.”

Reynolds, Nicole. “Cottage Industry: The Ladies of Llangollen and the Symbolic Capital of the ‘Cottage Ornée.’” The Eighteenth Century 51, no. 1/2 (2010): 211–27.

June’s Featured Collection: Romantic Circles’s featured collection is Romantic Circles, a refereed scholarly website devoted to the study of Romantic-period literature and culture provided by the University of Maryland.

They currently serve approximately 3.5 million pages to viewers across the globe and have been consistently recognized over the years for their service to education in the humanities. Content from Romantic Circles is also being featured on’s May Roundup, which recognizes materials from and about pandemics and epidemics of the Long Eighteenth Century.

Romantic Circles provides a searchable archive of electronic editions of Romantic-era texts, enhanced by technology and an online environment. According to their site, “each edition is based on the highest scholarly standards and is peer-reviewed.” In addition to electronic editions, the site also boasts a useful selection of pedagogical and scholarly resources, an exquisite image gallery, and an audio collection of recordings of contemporary Romanticists and Romantic-Era works.

May Roundup: Pandemic Resource Sampler

For this month’s roundup, is providing a sampler of materials for educators, students, and scholars. In non-fiction accounts, political and pedagogical documents, artifacts of visual culture, and more, the authors and artists collected here represent a variety of historical and contemporary voices from and about pandemics and epidemics of the 18th century. The documents shared constitute only a fraction of the resources available through, and we hope these voices inspire educators, students, and scholars to make connections from our century to the Long Eighteenth Century.

Our first resource features the collected letters of Robert Southey, English Poet Laureate. These letters, provided by Romantic Circles at the University of Maryland, contain Southey’s comments and observations during a resurgence of the plague in England and on the continent. His comments range from desolate to heartfelt to sarcastic, as we can see in this excerpt from his 1793 letter to Grosvenor Charles Bedford:

…rumour says, the plague has arrived in Bristol but rumour tells lies — the only plagues are domestic & I have plenty of those — the other I need not fear. in good health & spirits have I made my will — more from the wish of preventing impertinent curiosity than of indulging vanity. …. I am tired of politics — I am tired of this place — Life however has still temptations & I am not yet tired of myself — by the by I am tired of expecting your letter —

Please check out the gallery below for additional resources across a variety of genres. There is also a sample bibliography below with both primary and secondary readings.

Visit Romantic Circles for more on Robert Southey and his contemporaries.

Critical Sources for Further Reading Available via

Barney, Richard A., and Helene Scheck. “Introduction: Early and Modern Biospheres, Politics, and the Rhetorics of Plague.” Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies 10, no. 2 (2010): 1–22.

Boluk, Stephanie, and Wylie Lenz. “Infection, Media, and Capitalism: From Early Modern Plagues to Postmodern Zombies.” Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies 10, no. 2 (2010): 126–47.

Gilman, Ernest B. “The Subject of the Plague.” Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies 10, no. 2 (2010): 23–44.

Silva, Cristobal. “Miraculous Plagues: Epidemiology on New England’s Colonial Landscape.” Early American Literature 43, no. 2 (2008): 249–75.

Zuckerman, Arnold. “Plague and Contagionism in Eighteenth-Century England: The Role of Richard Mead.” Bulletin of the History of Medicine 78, no. 2 (2004): 273–308.

March Featured Collection: The Chymistry of Isaac Newton

18thConnect is pleased to introduce March’s featured collection: The Chymistry of Isaac Newton, provided by Indiana University at Bloomington.

The site boasts an impressive variety of information and resources, including scans and transcriptions of Newton’s original manuscripts, a glossary of alchemical terms, and a multimedia lab.

The site provides over fifty entries for Newton’s hand-written alchemical notes, scanned and transcribed from Keynes MS. 57, held at Kings College Library, Cambridge University. Each entry provides a detailed physical description and custodial history that is based on a physical inspection of the manuscript. The site’s Alchemical Glossary is a fascinating resource that provides over a hundred definitions for alchemical terms such as “ambergris,” “terra figulina,” and “vitriol of venus.” Their multimedia lab is particularly useful for a visualization of the types of experiments that Newton and others in his field conducted. The video for Newton’s “Tree of Diana” reaction, for instance, captures the stunning silver structure formed in a solution of silver and mercury dissolved in nitric acid.

Texts and images from The Chymistry of Isaac Newton are provided for non-commercial, personal, or research use only.

March Roundup: The Works of Isaac Newton

The images in this gallery celebrate the work of Isaac Newton, English mathematician, physicist, astronomer, and author.

Newton’s most notable contributions to his fields include his theorization of the laws of motion and gravity, his observation that white light is made up of the colors of the visible spectrum, and his development of calculus. Less known, however, is Newton’s work in the field of “chymistry,” which modern scholars would be more likely to call alchemy.

Much of the information presented here is courtesy of The Chymistry of Isaac Newton, which is also our Featured Collection for March. This site features a variety of resources that help students and scholars visualize the work of the author and the field of chemistry in its early stages.

Eighteenth-Century Poetry Archive: Now on 18th Connect

Please join us in welcoming the Eighteenth-Century Poetry Archive (ECPA) to the 18th Connect collection! ECPA provides an open-access digital archive of high-quality primary and secondary sources. Their full-text collection is edited and annotated as a collaborative effort, with a large network of editors, scholars, and students dedicated to collaborating and sharing texts.

ECPA also supplements their texts whenever possible with digital images. In many cases, researchers and collaborators can see the appearance of the source document, check the transcription, and engage with their XML-editor for corrections and improvements. ECPA is also a research project, the aims of which are to provide and contribute to a growing body of annotated texts, analyses, tools, and secondary sources. ECPA works with and builds upon texts created by the Text Creation Partnership from Gale’s, and uses the Oxford Text Archive’s (OTA) TEI/XML p5 versions of texts.

ECPA is updated on a biannual basis, and their future projects include increasing the number of authors available (particularly women authors) and providing better interconnection between analytical layers to make points of connectedness more visible, especially in terms of how these points are maintained, dissolved, and taken up again over time.

Currently, ECPA is searchable as one of 18th Connect’s “Other Digital Collections.” However, we anticipate peer-reviewing their content and reindexing them in the coming months as “Peer-Reviewed Projects.”

Have a question about ECPA? You can e-mail them at or visit their website at

January Roundup: Happy Birthday Mozart!

The images in this gallery celebrate the life of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, whose 264th birthday occurs on January 27th.

Mozart began composing from the age of 5 and composed over 600 works throughout the course of his short life. His work is considered archetypical of the Classical style, spanning many genres including symphony, opera, solo concerto, chamber music, and piano sonata. After his death, Mozart’s reputation for skill and versatility persisted, influencing later composers such as Ludwig van Beethoven, Frederic Chopin, and Pyotr Tchaikovsky.

The images and information presented here are courtesy of Europeana. Europeana Collections is an initiative of the European Union (EU), working with thousands of European archives, libraries and museums to share Europe’s cultural heritage for enjoyment, education, and research. The entire collection of books, music, artworks, and more contains over 50 million digitized items. Their music collection features over 300,000 recordings, sheet music, instruments, and much more, all freely accessible to 18thConnect users.

18th Connect Was at Behn/ Burney 2019!

Logo for the conference

In November of 2019, the Auburn University College of Liberal Arts hosted the biennial joint meeting of the Aphra Behn and Frances Burney Societies. The theme of the conference was “Public Good(s),” and scholars presented a wide range of conferences and workshops that engaged with the questions surrounding public engagement and advocacy, both historically and practically.

18th Connect was represented at this conference by both Dr. Emily Friedman (our Director) and Ms. Elizabeth Brissey (our Project Manager). Ms. Brissey hosted a collaborative workshop entitled “An Introduction to 18thConnect.Org,” which provided a framework for beginning a Digital Humanities project with integration into 18th Connect in mind.

Click on the following link to view and download Ms. Brissey’s presentation slides.

July 2019: 18th Connect at ISECS!

Logo for the International Society of Eighteenth Century Studies 2019 ConferenceIn July of 2019, The British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies hosted the ISECS International Congress on the Enlightenment at the University of Edinburgh. The theme of the congress was “Enlightenment Identities,” and ISECS welcomed a wide range of submissions on the topic.

We are pleased to announce that 18th Connect was represented at this conference! Our director, Emily Friedman of Auburn University, hosted a collaborative workshop entitled “Getting Started with Digital Humanities,” which provided beginners with a framework for embarking upon Digital Humanities projects with an emphasis on skills and strategies for sharing work in peer-reviewed formats. Click on each following link to view and download Dr. Friedman’s presentation slides and her helpful handouts!