We are currently working with undergraduate and graduate students and volunteers across a dozen campuses to transcribe recipe manuscripts, and our efforts have already led us to complete versions of works by Johanna St. John, Anne Fanshawe, Jane Baber, Elizabeth Bulkeley, ‘Mrs Corlyon’, Frances Catchmay, and Margaret Baker, among others.

We are currently using the Folger Shakespeare Library’s Dromio platform in our classrooms, and in the past we used the Textual Communities Platform.  All completed transcriptions are encoded by basic XML tagging, adhere to the standards of the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) and are double- or even triple-keyed.

For examples of how we’ve been teaching transcription in the classroom, along with some teaching materials, see:

Rebecca Laroche on teaching recipes online and her students on metheglin and St. Anthony’s face.  Here is her syllabus.

Jennifer Munroe on teaching recipe transcription.  Here are her syllabi for three courses with Recipe modules:  ENGL 4050, ENGL 6680, and ENGL 6070

Hillary Nunn has taught using early modern recipes and transcription in courses ranging from first year composition to upper level undergraduate- and graduate-level classes on Disease in Literature.

Nancy Simpson-Younger teaches transcription as part of her 300-level Books in Society course at Pacific Lutheran University. Her syllabus for COMA 321/ ENGL 311 is available here.

Lisa Smith on teaching recipe transcription and her students writing on unicorn horns, fecal medicines, and fishy remedies. Lisa’s work with students first occurred within a senior-level undergraduate course at the University of Saskatchewan, “Women and Gender in Early Modern Europe” (September-December 2012). She later offered a full-year course, “The Digital Recipe Book Project” (October 2016-May 2017), for final-year undergraduates at the University of Essex. For more information on the U of S course see:

Smith’s syllabus for ‘The Digital Recipe Book Project’ can be viewed here: HR650 syllabus 2016-7. University of Essex students blogged at The Digital Recipe Books Project and developed a website on Margaret Baker’s book (The Baker Project).

Amy Tigner on teaching recipes and her students writing on rickets, muske cakes and liquorice.  Amy also blogged about chocolate here and here.  Here is a syllabus for an intensive course on Paleography.

Interested in starting a transcription project in your classroom? Contact us, and we’ll be glad to help out!

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