Informations about implementation, features and development of Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta.


For information, suggestions and reports contact:

Regione del Veneto

Regione del Veneto, Direzione Beni Attività culturali e Sport
U.O. Promozione e valorizzazione culturale

Ufficio Valorizzazione Beni librari
Lorena Dal Poz -
Antonella Gasparotti -

Ufficio Cooperazione bibliotecaria
Giulio Negretto -


Paolo Eleuteri -
Barbara Vanin -
Francesco Bernardi -


In September 2003 the Veneto Regional Council set up a project to catalogue manuscript holdings in libraries in the Veneto region, aiming to provide an online catalogue. This project is in addition to earlier cataloguing initiatives concerning medieval codices and the transfer of their catalogues in paper form to a common electronic manuscript database in the Veneto region.
Moreover, the project aims to promote the electronic publication of extant material for the study of manuscripts (old catalogues, essays and studies that are difficult to find, etc.).
The purpose is to provide a uniform and freely accessible catalogue, via shared cataloguing standards.
The implementation of this project entails coordination of its scientific and organisational aspects and the revision of the catalogue descriptions.
The libraries taking part in the project identify the collections to be catalogued and choose the staff to undertake such tasks, promoted and funded by the Veneto Regional Council.

It has been decided to provide a summary descriptive cataloguing model treating essential data regarding material and text, given the extensive collections of manuscripts, mostly from the modern era. This facilitates description and prompt publication.
In the first year of the project, from October 2003 to December 2004, cataloguing was undertaken adopting the MANUS software system, developed by the Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo Unico (ICCU). The MANUS system is a program for local area network cataloguing, then the data are sent to the ICCU for publication. The revision of descriptions undertaken by the coordinators highlighted the difficulty of achieving uniformity when starting from isolated cataloguing.
For the second year of the project 2004-2005 the Veneto Regional Council assigned the coordinators the task of developing a new cataloguing software system that would include online cataloguing of manuscripts, and the sharing of data and tools to facilitate revision.

The Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta is a cataloguing software system developed for the project combined with an online database for catalogue access. Cataloguing on the NBM is undertaken via the Internet and only requires Internet access and a Web browser to access the software. The organisation of the NBM has been designed to enable cataloguers to share all data concerning name and title headings, and bibliography. The NBM will include all cataloguing previously carried out by the MANUS software system, and it is possible to export data to the latter.

The NBM has been online since June 2005. Cataloguing in the NBM system started in September 2005.


The Library of Museo Correr was initially responsible for the coordination of the project, sponsored by the Veneto Regional Council in association with the Municipality of Venice, Central Administrative Department of Heritage and Culture.
Since 2008 the the Ca' Foscari University in Venice, Dipartimento di Scienze dell'Antichità e del Vicino Oriente and now Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici is responsible for the coordination of the project.

The team is composed of Paolo Eleuteri from Ca' Foscari University in Venice, project leader, Francesco Bernardi and Barbara Vanin, with the collaboration of Alessia Giachery. The team works closely with Lorena Dal Poz, Giulio Negretto and Antonella Gasparotti from the Office for Library Cooperation at the Veneto Regional Council.

The main task of the coordinators is to monitor the scientific aspect of the project and develop description data sheets. The team provides ongoing scientific and technical consultation to the libraries and the Veneto Regional Council, undertakes preliminary surveys in the libraries, organises technical meetings and provides material for the study and cataloguing of the manuscripts. The coordinators also manage the access to the reserved areas on the NBM and they are concerned with the examination, revision and publication of all the catalogue descriptions produced by the libraries.

The coordination team created and designed the Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta.

About NBM

The Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta is a software system for the cataloguing of manuscripts that uses the Web browser to publish data files of the catalogue directly on the Internet.
Therefore, the NBM enables the libraries or archives to work on the same database when cataloguing their documents.
This solution facilitates retrieval of previously compiled information and above all allows revisers to modify information continuously, in this way being able to extend and update the open catalogue. The software consists of a data input module solely for the cataloguers and a consultation module for the public.
The NBM comprises a relational-type database (MySQL, the world's most popular open source database) and a web application (developed using Java/Jsp technology that relies on the services of the Tomcat web server). The server-side application (MySQL database and servlet) is installed on the Unix platform.
The client application is accessible via a simple Web browser on each platform, resulting in a system that is completely flexible and suitable for any hardware and software configuration.
Therefore, the Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta is a central system that gathers information on the manuscript collections that is readily accessible to the world's Web users.

The NBM system was developed by Idoru srl. and commissioned by the Central Administrative Department of Heritage and Culture at the Municipality of Venice. It was located on the server of the Municipality of Venice, thanks to an agreement made with the Informative Systems. Since 2008 a new version of NBM is developed by Idoru srl and commissioned by the Ca' Foscari University in Venice, Dipartimento di Scienze dell'Antichità e del Vicino Oriente, now Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici.
The Veneto Regional Council is proprietor of the software.


Regione del Veneto - Giunta regionale
with Ca' Foscari University in Venice, Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici

Devising and design
Francesco Bernardi
Paolo Eleuteri
Barbara Vanin

Sistema Informativo Regione Veneto
with Simone Vincenzi (development)

Development solutions and debugging
Francesco Bernardi

Francesco Bernardi
Paolo Eleuteri
Barbara Vanin

Sara Maragotto / Studio Fludd

Regione del Veneto - Direzione Sistema Informatico


P. Eleuteri, B. Vanin, Il catalogo on line dei manoscritti delle biblioteche del Veneto, in Gazette du livre médiéval, 47 (2005), 31-38 [online version]
F. Bernardi, B. Vanin, La catalogazione dei manoscritti moderni, un progetto regionale, in: Tutelare e Cooperare: politiche e iniziative regionali per la valorizzazione del patrimonio librario e lo sviluppo delle biblioteche, Verona 2006, 21-24 [download article - 71KB - pdf]
B. Vanin, P. Eleuteri, Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta. Catalogo in linea dei manoscritti delle biblioteche del Veneto, in Bollettino dei Musei Civici Veneziani, III serie, 1 (2006), 113-117
B. Vanin, P. Eleuteri, La "Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta" della Regione del Veneto, in Conoscere il manoscritto: esperienze, progetti, problemi. Dieci anni del progetto Codex in Toscana, atti del convegno internazionale, Firenze, 29-30 giugno 2006, a cura di M. Marchiaro e S. Zamponi, Firenze 2007, 145-152
F. Bernardi, B. Vanin, Catalogo dei codici della Biblioteca di Emmanuele Cicogna: digitalizzazione e pubblicazione online in Bollettino dei Musei Civici Veneziani, III serie, 2 (2007), 147-149 [download article - 73KB - pdf]
P. Eleuteri, La catalogazione in rete dei manoscritti delle biblioteche venete, in Zenit e Nadir II. I manoscritti dell'area del Mediterraneo: la catalogazione come base della ricerca, atti del Seminario internazionale, Montepulciano, 6-8 luglio 2007, a cura di B. Cenni, C.M.F. Lalli, L. Magionami, Montepulciano 2007, 221-225
B. Vanin, ‘Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta’ Online Catalogue of Manuscripts conserved in Libraries in the Veneto Region, in A. Cartelli, M. Palma (ed. by), Encyclopedia of Information Communication Technology (ICT), Hershey, Pennsylvania 2008, 632-634
F. Bernardi, P. Eleuteri, B. Vanin, La catalogazione in rete dei manoscritti delle biblioteche venete: Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta, in M. Rehbein, P. Sahle, T. Schaßan (hrsg.), Kodikologie und Paläographie im Digitalen Zeitalter, Norderstedt 2009, 3-11
P. Eleuteri, B. Vanin, Nuova Biblioteca Manoscritta. Catalogo dei manoscritti promosso dalla Regione del Veneto, in: La descrizione dei manoscritti: esperienze a confronto, coordinamento scientifico di E. Crisci, M. Maniaci, P. Orsini, Cassino 2010, 61-69.

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