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“Revealing Recipes” Workshop Video Now Available

The 2021 “Revealing Recipes: Top Tips from Early Modern Women” workshop is now available  here. Hosted by the Wellcome Collection and organized in tandem the Royal College of Physicians, the event kicked off EMROC’s annual transcribathon, and its speakers offer fantastic background on the manuscripts, transcription, and digitization. If you want to share an introduction to early modern recipes and transcription, this is a fantastic source.

Here’s what you can see discussed: 

  • The Wellcome recipe collection (Richard Aspin, former Head of Special Collections at Wellcome Collection)​
  • The power of remedy books for the modern reader (Helen Wakely, Inclusive Collections Lead, Wellcome Collection)​
  • Household medicinal recipes (Anne Stobart, University of Exeter)​
  • BREAK​
  • Digitizing the recipe books (Christy Henshaw, Digital Production Manager, Wellcome Collection)​
  • Conserving recipe books (Elizabeth Fagg-Shuttlewood , Conservator, Wellcome Collection)​
  • EMROC and transcribing as a teaching resource (Jennifer Munroe, Professor of English, University of North Carolina and co-founder of EMROC)​
  • Q&A​ (all panellists including Pamela Forde, Head of Archives at the Royal College of Physicians, London)

Transcribathon Accomplishments

Just look what we’ve done! 

Transcribers in our 2021 Revealing Recipes event produced over 300 pages of manuscript transcriptions, according to FromthePage’s statistics. It took 170 of us, but we made our way through every page of the Sedley and Ayscough manuscripts, and we made real progress on the Fanshawe as well!

We’ll have more news about our progress soon, but we couldn’t wait to share these numbers. Thanks so much to all those who joined in this collaborative effort! 


Join us for our March 4 Transcribathon

4 March 2021
Revealing Recipes: Top Tips from Early Modern Women:

Lady Sedley’s from the RCP and Lady Ayscough’s from the Wellcome Collection

Please join the Early Modern Recipe Online Collective (EMROC), Royal College of Physicians (RCP) and the Wellcome Collection for a one-day manuscript adventure on March 4, from 8am to 4pm EST; 1PM to 9 PM GMT. This worldwide event offers a chance to help make two medical recipe books searchable for users around the globe.

Click Here to Start Transcribing

We’ll be transcribing two fabulous 17th century medical recipe books: Lady Sedley’s from the RCP and Lady Ayscough’s from the Wellcome Collection. Drop in, or stay all day! 

You’ll have the chance to:

  • Discover more about the history of the books direct from experts at the RCP and Wellcome Collection. Check out the Revealing Recipes schedule of online talks and events here, and register for access 10am-noon EST (3-5 pm GMT) during the transcribathon.
  • Learn about early modern recipes and domestic healthcare.
  • Take part in conversations with experts on Twitter, and more.

And all from the comfort of your own home!

For more background on the manuscripts we’re transcribing this year, see our Ayscough Project and Sedley Project pages. There, you can also find useful videos about the manuscripts, as well as links to their the manuscripts in full.

Transcribers will be working around the globe.  Participants will virtually meet scholars from around the world and emerge from the day with a line for their CV—all from their own home, classroom, or office! NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY – we’ll walk you through the coding and offer pointers on the handwriting.

Keep up with the day’s events here on the EMROC webpage, and on Twitter and Zoom. Felix, assistant archivist at the RCP, will also be on hand @RCPMuseum from 9-9:30am EST,  2-2.30pm, to chat about Lady Sedley’s recipe book and the RCP’s other amazing archives.

We are grateful to the Folger Shakespeare Library for providing a customised transcription platform on From the Page for this event. We’ll be posting more on accessing and using the platform soon.

Interested in joining our Transcribathon virtually? Contact Lisa Smith, at or @historybeagle, or jump in on the day.

On this page, please find a series of resources to orient, help, and inform.

Key links

Transcription FAQ and information about Getting Started with Transcription.

EMROC blog (for quick and dirty blog posts as things happen, as well as more thoughtful posts later)

Twitter (for those of us live-tweeting the event, at #EMROCtranscribes; more suggested hasthtags here)

Revealing Recipes Workshop, with live mini-lectures from scholars and librarians. 

Royal College of Physicians event page.

EMROCK 2021 Spotify Playlist

Pre-transcribathon survey so we can learn more about our participants. (Thank you!!!)

New for 2021: Transcribing with FromthePage

This year’s Revealing Recipes Transcribathon on March 4 will be using a newly-customized transcription interface, created through the efforts of the Folger Shakespeare Library and the Wellcome Collection. Whether you’re new to transcribing, or used to the Folger’s Dromio platform, the new interface at FromThePage might be surprising when you first log on, mostly because it’s so streamlined!

Here’s a quick look at the interface. Click here for a bigger version.

As you can see, the emphasis is on getting the text transcribed into the box on the right. There are a few buttons for inserting tags, but working with the words themselves is the main focus. Tag as much or as little as you like, and, yes, we’ll soon be linking to full instructions on how to use them if you want a peek ahead of time.

Curious? Visit and take a look! While you’re there, click the “Sign Up to Transcribe” button so you’ll be ready to go on March 4.

Why the new interface? It’s an effort by the Folger and the Wellcome to develop an interface that reflects a shared set of encoding principles for manuscript transcription, and which makes the products of crowdsourced work easier to integrate into online resources. 

As Adrian Plau of the Wellcome explains it: “Wellcome Collection is currently working to bring together all of our digital services and content in one place, A part of this work is to streamline the ways we display and share manuscript cataloguing metadata, resulting in increased accessibility and discoverability. The From The Page transcription platform allows exports with the potential to blend seamlessly with a variety of digital and print sources. For more on Wellcome Collection’s One Website work, see the following posts: