An informational site that provides descriptions of and guide to the holdings of the Archivio Segreto Vaticano (ASV) and its publications, including a history of the archive and procedures for consultation or requests for photographic or digital reproductions of any holdings. Descriptions of the major projects are accompanied by images of representative manuscripts. The downloadable guide lists the over 600 different collections, but not individual manuscripts of their contents.
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The goal of the project was to locate all the medieval codices written in the Hebrew script, which contained explicit production dates or at least scribe names; to study and document all their visual and measurable material features and scribal practices in situ, i.e. in the libraries in which they were kept; and classify these features and practices in order to expose a historical typology of the hand-produced Hebrew book and provide users of Hebrew manuscripts with a tool for identifying the production region and assessing the period of the studied manuscripts. Indeed, since the initiation of the project, almost all the dated manuscripts that were located have been studied and documented in some two hundred and fifty libraries and private collections.
Bibliothèque virtuelle des bibliothèques, ce portail vous invite à découvrir l’histoire d’une partie des textes et livres qui ont été écrits, traduits, enluminés, collectionnés ou inventoriés depuis l’Antiquité jusqu’au XVIIIe siècle.
A virtual library of libraries, this portal invites you to discover the history of a portion of the texts and books that were written, translated, illuminated, collected or catalogued from Antiquity to the eighteenth century.
Searchable database of the manuscripts held at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France in the Departement des Manuscrits and the Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal, some with links to digitized versions of the manuscripts. Database includes full descriptions of manuscripts and bibliographical information, as well as incipit and explicit.
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A database of manuscripts digitized by the British Library; see the website for the full range of its archival collection.
A collection of Latin chant inventories from medieval and early modern antiphoners, breviaries, and other liturgical sources.
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Cantus Index is a catalogue of chant texts and melodies for Office and Mass. Multiple online medieval music databases have been connected together through unique “Cantus ID numbers”. Chant texts and melodies can be searched on this Cantus Index website, and matches in any of the partner databases will be returned.
The research project CANTUS NETWORK, based at the Austrian Academy of Sciences, aims to investigate the records of Christian medieval worship that have survived in manuscript form and describe the practice of liturgical and musical acts of worship. The key sources for this transmission are the liturgical “prompt books”, called liber ordinarius, which include a short form of more or less the entire rite of a diocese or a monastery. Here, prayers, readings and chants are given as in abbreviated form as text incipits.
A liber ordinarius usually includes all information necessary for the church services of an individual institution (church, monastery) or a group (diocese, group of monasteries). On the one hand, this includes the incipits of chants, readings and prayers for the liturgy of the hours, for mass and for processions. On the other hand, it also includes rubrics that provide instructions on how and when particular liturgical actions should be carried out. In a third column, libri ordinarii may contain commentaries on the liturgy taken from standard contemporary works, providing additional information for particular feast days or a particular liturgical activity. A fourth column may provide the unlined neume notation of the chant incipits. When dealing with parts of ordinals, the neumes are the only proof of which piece of music is actually concerned. “Local colour” is created by the combination of the three or four columns, that is, the chant and recital text tradition, the rubrics and the explanations of the liturgy. [the site is in German with an English option]
Cantus Planus at the University of Regensburg presents a variety of tools and databases for the study of plainchant. The site offers a number of datafiles containing antiphons, responsories, and the texts of various liturgical books from across Europe. Likewise, the site presents databases for searching various aspects of the liturgy, including saints’ feasts or the type of liturgy used for a particular day. Likewise, the site contains search apparatus for notation as well as a number of bibliographies on chant.
The site is free to use, though it has not been recently updated.
The Christine de Pizan Digital Scriptorium is an ongoing project to make available digital surrogates of all the manuscripts of Christine de Pizan’s literary work. Currently, the project offers digital surrogates of 56 of the manuscripts of Christine de Pizan’s work, including all the manuscripts held in the Bibliothèque nationale de France. Manuscripts are presented in a IIIF viewer.
Copyright to individual manuscripts and their images is retained by the institution that holds the material.
Named after Pierpont Morgan’s yacht, CORSAIR is a single database providing unified access to over 250,000 records for medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, rare and reference books, literary and historical manuscripts, music scores, ancient seals and tablets, drawings, prints, and other art objects. Records continue to be added for the balance of the collection as well as for new acquisitions.
The depth of detail is unusual for an online catalog. Many records include summaries of the content of individual letters, lengthy notes about provenance, and detailed descriptions of bindings. Specialized indexes enable researchers to find all of the Morgan’s holdings associated with a given name, date, or place. For example, with a single search a scholar interested in Dickens can find records for manuscripts and letters in the author’s hand, early printed editions of his novels, original illustrations, photographs, and personal possessions such as Dickens’ ink pot and cigar case.
CORSAIR also serves as the gateway to one of the largest repositories of medieval images on the Internet, providing access to more than 57,000 digitized images from the Morgan’s collection of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts. Users may page through every illustrated leaf within a manuscript, or search for individual images by place or date of creation, artist’s name, illustration type, and subject. The images and descriptions may be accessed directly through CORSAIR, or by visiting Images from Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts.
The Database of Byzantine Book Epigrams is an ongoing project that seeks to compile all metrical poems in Byzantine manuscripts that self-reference the book in which they are found. The database currently has over 12,000 records that record the epigram, the type of poem it is, and the manuscript in which it was found. There is a catalog searchable by occurrence, type of epigram, manuscripts, and people. There is also a substantial bibliography on Byzantine epigrams provided.
The Decretum Gratiani project sets as its goal the creation of an edition of Gratian’s Decretum. Though it is unclear whether the final edition will be digital or on paper, the project as of 2020 provides a PDF of a draft of the text with caveats for its use. There is also a list of manuscript sigla of the Decretum that link to outside repositories. However, many of the links in this list and elsewhere on the site are broken.
DIAMM (the Digital Image Archive of Medieval Music) is a leading resource for the study of medieval manuscripts. We present images and metadata for thousands of manuscripts on this website. We also provide a home for scholarly resources and editions, undertake digital restoration of damaged manuscripts and documents, publish high-quality facsimiles, and offer our expertise as consultants.
DigiPal is a new resource for the study of medieval handwriting, particularly that produced in England during the years 1000–1100, the time of Æthelred, Cnut and William the Conqueror. It is designed to allow you to see samples of handwriting from the period and to compare them with each other quickly and easily.
The Bodleian Libraries’ collections are extraordinary and significant—both from a scholarly point of view and as material that has an historic and aesthetic richness that holds value for non-academic users. Each year the Libraries serve more than 65,000 readers, over 40% of them from beyond the University, while its critically-acclaimed exhibitions attract almost 100,000 visitors annually. In an effort to make portions of our collections open to a wide variety of users from around the world for learning, teaching and research, the Bodleian Libraries have been digitizing library content for nearly twenty years. The result is over 650,000 freely available digital objects and almost another 1 million images awaiting release.
Like many academic libraries, though, our freely available digital collections have been placed online in project-driven websites, with content stored in discrete ‘silos’, each with their own metadata format, different user interfaces, and no common search interface enabling users to discover content or navigate across collections. Some of our collections are linked at portal pages, but each collection remains, with a few exceptions, isolated and difficult to search. In addition, only a few collections offer a machine-readable interface, or any way to link their data with similar data in other Bodleian collections, or with collections at other institutions.
Digital.Bodleian aims to solve these problems by:
- Bringing together our discrete collections under a single user interface which supports fast user-friendly viewing of high resolution images.
- Standardizing the metadata for each collection to facilitate faceted browsing and searching across collections.
- Converting all of our images in a variety of formats to JPEG2000 and migrating them to a robust scalable storage infrastructure.
- Allowing users to tag and annotate images and group together content into their own virtual collections which can be shared with other users.
- Allowing users to export metadata and images.
All of these tasks have been carried out using standards-compliant file formats and methods and with a view to future expansion, scalability and robustness.
A searchable database of images of European manuscripts created before 1550 containing polyphonic music. Also provides information about the contents of many more manuscripts of which images are not available, and a searchable bibliography of related secondary literature.
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An searchable image database of selections from medieval and Renaissance manuscripts that unites scattered resources from many institutions into an international tool for teaching and scholarly research.
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DigiVatLib is a digital library service. It provides free access to the Vatican Library’s digitized collections: manuscripts, incunabula, archival materials and inventories as well as graphic materials, coins and medals, printed materials (special projects).
The Digital Charterbank of the Netherlands is a portal for searching all charters held in Dutch archives. Though the repository does not include images, it does offer links to the holding institution and descriptions of the materials. The website is presented in Dutch only.
Diplomata Belgica offers a critical survey of all the diplomatic sources, edited or still unpublished, and issued by both natural persons and legal bodies from the medieval Southern Low Countries. Diplomata Belgica covers present day Belgium as well as those areas which belonged historically to the Southern Low Countries but are part now of France (French Flanders, French Hainault), the Netherlands (parts of the provinces of Zeeland, Noord-Brabant, Limburg), the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, or Germany (parts of the Rhineland). At this stage,Diplomata Belgica contains metadata about almost 35,000 charters and deeds in Latin, Old-French, Middle Dutch and Middle High German, almost 19,000 full text transcriptions and almost 5,000 photographs of original charters. The database aims at exhaustivity for the period before 1250 and will, in the future, also include late medieval diplomatic materials without striving after completeness.
An interactive map of more than 500 libraries holding digitized medieval manuscripts that may be browsed for free, providing a portal to the individual institutions.
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The Documentary Archaeology of Late Medieval Europe project consists of over 500 records of material culture relating to late medieval Europe. Records include household inventories, wills, descriptions, and sometimes the items themselves. The site is frequently updated with objects and lists of the month, which include essays on a variety of objects from around Europe.
The project seeks guest collaborators and discuss objects.