Notaries and the book trade

When 18th-century booksellers and publishers in France planned to publish a new title, it was not uncommon for them to request in prospectuses or advertisements for the proposed work that subscribers mail their subscription fee to a notary, who acted as an agent for the bookseller or publisher.

Case Wing Z 45 .18 ser. 1a no. 111

Many of these notaries aren’t listed in standard bibliographies or in lists of authorized name headings that we commonly use when making catalog records.  But I still wanted to include the names of these notaries in our records to make them accessible to researchers.  In my efforts to find a helpful reference resource, I stumbled upon ETANOT (ETAt des NOTaires de Paris).  Compiled by the Centre historique des Archives nationales, ETANOT is a database containing biographical and professional information on more than 3,000 notaries operating in Paris from the 15th to the mid-19thcentury.  In addition to full-text searching, you can browse by name, neighborhood, street name, and time period.

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