ESTS 2022: Histories of the Holograph

Histories of the Holograph: From Ancient to Modern Manuscripts and Beyond

A holograph can be defined as a manuscript that is written by the person named as, or presumed to be, its author. Usually, the notion of ‘modern manuscripts’ is used in genetic criticism to distinguish these private documents from earlier (e.g. ancient, medieval) manuscripts, which are often scribal copies, i.e. meant for public dissemination.

But even though holographs are rarer in the pre-modern period, they do exist. Similarly, the era of the ‘modern manuscript’ needs to be confronted on the other end of its temporal spectrum with the era of the ‘digital manuscript’ – the born-digital holograph, so to speak.

By making ‘histories of the holograph’ the theme of the 2022 ESTS conference, we would like to encourage the dialogue between colleagues working on texts from all periods and invite them to investigate habits of revision throughout the ages, alongside more general ESTS-related topics and questions on textual scholarship and scholarly editing. These may include: the theories and practices of scholarly, critical and textual editing; digital scholarly editing and tool development; philology; manuscript studies; codicology and palaeography; genetic criticism; historical bibliography and the history of the book; authorship studies, etc.

See the full conference programme

Visit the conference website for further details and information on registration

This conference is co-organised by the University of Oxford (Jesus College) and the University of Antwerp (Centre for Manuscript Genetics).

Academic Committee: Mateusz Antoniuk, Olga Beloborodova, Nicholas Cronk, Paolo D’Iorio, Sakari Katajamäki, Seamus Perry, Adam Smyth, Kathryn Sutherland, Dirk Van Hulle, Wim Van Mierlo, Daniel Wakelin.

Organising Committee: Olga Beloborodova, Wout Dillen, Dirk Van Hulle

The conference will be preceded by the GENESIS OXFORD 2022 conference, 15-17 March 2022, and by a pre-conference colloquium on authors’ libraries, 15 March 2022.

Bookwheel, from Agostino Ramelli's Le diverse et artificiose machine, 1588


For more information on the GENESIS and ESTS Oxford 2022 conferences, please contact their respective Organising Committees: and


Jesus College
University of Oxford
Turl Street, Oxford, OX13DW