Titles in our data model are linked to both persons and firms. A person in our database includes:

1. Women who contributed to the titles in our title table; we define contributors as authors, publishers, booksellers, printers, editors, translators, engravers, introductions, illustrators, compilers, and composers;

2. Men who contributed to these women’s titles (we usually only include men who played a prominent role, such as authors and editors);

3. Women who published, printed, or sold books, as determined by the imprint or the colophon of a title, or other reliable data, who were active between 1750-1830, as we have been able to find in our firm sources.

In this way, most of our titles are linked to specific women included in our persons table. One exception to this is for a title authored “by a lady” for whom no identity is known. Of course, it is possible that some of these titles were in fact authored by men, but they are likely to be of limited occurrence that it seemed preferable to include these titles, rather than exclude them all. Another exception is that in an effort to be comprehensive, we include all women who published, printed or sold books, even if we have not included titles produced by this woman. The work of the next phase of the project (after our initial launch in mid-2019) is to find and add these titles.

For a complete list of and description of all of the metadata about a title we include, see our documentation for Persons. We find the data for these people (first name, last name, title, gender, birth date, death date, place of birth, place of death) by searching the following sources: 

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 


Dictionary of Irish Biography 

German Biography 

French Biography 

British Book Trade Index

Exeter Working Papers in Book History 

Google Search, using as search times whatever known information is available.

If our searches are unsuccessful, we attempt to search using possible alternate name spellings, married names, or maiden names, if known.

We also used data provided to us by Kirstyn Leuner, Director and Co-editor of the Stainforth Library of Women Writers to add Virtual International Authority File (VIAF) permalinks, Wikipedia links and Wikimedia links to about 600 of our female persons. We then searched for VIAF permalinks, Wikipedia links and Wikimedia links for all of our other persons. Once all of these searches have been undertaken, whether or not we were successful in fully populating the fields, we consider an individual person record to be verified. For many persons we possess very little data, often only the last name.

To explore persons, click here: /person/.

To search persons, click here: /person/search.


Reese Irwin, Michelle Levy, Kate Moffat, Kandice Sharren