Valentine Giamatti Dante Collection
The Valentine Giamatti Dante Collection is made up of more than 200 illustrated editions of the Divina commedia of Dante Aligheiri (ca. 1265-1321), from 1481 to the present. The artists represented range from anonymous engravers to well-known artists such as Salvador Dali, William Blake, and Sandro Botticelli. The collection also contains a number of non-illustrated translations in a variety of languages, including Arabic, Welsh, Japanese, and Polish. A few additional pieces representing works inspired by the Divina commedia are also included.
This collection of books was given to the library in 1974 by professor Valentine Giamatti of the Mount Holyoke College Italian Department. Professor Giamatti began collecting these books after World War II. His first book came to him as a wedding gift. His collection was augmented by books he was given by Clara Stillman Reed, and continues to be added to by purchase by the Library and by gifts from other book collectors.
Mr. Giamatti's original lists of his collection form the basis for the guide to the collection available in the Dante Catalog. The catalog is arranged chronologically and may be approached sequentially or through the accompanying indices.