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The Cambridge Modern History Genesis of a reference publishing tradition

The Cambridge Modern History Genesis of a reference publishing tradition Cambridge, Harvard, Oxford the names of these universities instantly conjure up images of the highest attainments of higher education. Of course, great universities also operate great university presses. So any reference book with the name of Oxford, Cambridge, or Harvard in the title possesses immediate credibility and saleability. But it was not always so. Prior to the latter half of the nineteenth century the Oxford and the Cambridge University Presses were known to the public primarily as publishers of the Bible. Oxford broke into reference publishing, and along with it widespread public recognition, by means of its famous dictionaries, of which the pinnacle was the massive Oxford English Dictionary. The Cambridge University Press hereafter referred to as CUP took a different approach to publishing scholarly reference works by producing authoritative and encyclopedic histories. According to S.C. Roberts, a longtime secretary to the Syndics of the CUP, apart from the Bible, the first book that made the Press well known to the general public was the Cambridge Modern History. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reference Services Review Emerald Publishing

The Cambridge Modern History Genesis of a reference publishing tradition

Reference Services Review , Volume 20 (2): 16 – Feb 1, 1992

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
0090-7324
DOI
10.1108/eb049156
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Cambridge, Harvard, Oxford the names of these universities instantly conjure up images of the highest attainments of higher education. Of course, great universities also operate great university presses. So any reference book with the name of Oxford, Cambridge, or Harvard in the title possesses immediate credibility and saleability. But it was not always so. Prior to the latter half of the nineteenth century the Oxford and the Cambridge University Presses were known to the public primarily as publishers of the Bible. Oxford broke into reference publishing, and along with it widespread public recognition, by means of its famous dictionaries, of which the pinnacle was the massive Oxford English Dictionary. The Cambridge University Press hereafter referred to as CUP took a different approach to publishing scholarly reference works by producing authoritative and encyclopedic histories. According to S.C. Roberts, a longtime secretary to the Syndics of the CUP, apart from the Bible, the first book that made the Press well known to the general public was the Cambridge Modern History.

Journal

Reference Services ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Feb 1, 1992

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