Dr. Rosemary Firman, librarian of Hereford Cathedral, uses a conservation vacuum as she finishes cleaning one of the historic manuscripts in the cathedral’s peculiar Chained Library during the annual spring clean on Jan. 24 in Hereford, England. The famous library contains 1,500 books, including 227 medieval manuscripts. Given the delicate state of the literary works, specialists and trained volunteers must spend a week out of the year cleaning the entire collection.
Chaining books for security was widespread in libraries from the Middle Ages to the 18th century, and Hereford Cathedral’s 17-century Chained Library is the largest to survive with all its chains, rods and locks intact. MNN’s photos of the week