Skip to content

Archives

Middle English Dictionary

Welcome to the electronic Middle English Dictionary. The print MED, completed in 2001, has been described as “the greatest achievement in medieval scholarship in America.” Its 15,000 pages offer a comprehensive analysis of lexicon and usage for the period 1100-1500, based on the analysis of a collection of over three million citation slips, the largest collection of this kind available. This electronic version of the MED preserves all the details of the print MED, but goes far beyond this, by converting its contents into an enormous database, searchable in ways impossible within any print dictionary.

Monastic Manuscript project

The Monastic Manuscript Project is a database of descriptions of manuscripts that contain texts relevant for the study of early medieval monasticism, especially monastic rules, ascetic treatises, vitae patrum-texts and texts related to monastic reforms. We provide lists of manuscripts for each of these texts, which are linked to manuscript descriptions. The purpose is to offer a tool for reconstructing not only the manuscript dissemination of early medieval monastic texts but also to give access to the specific contexts in which a text appears.

Monumenta Musicae Byzantinae

Provides an index of volumes published in University of Copenhagen’s Monumenta Musicae Byzantinae series, dedicated to scholarship about Byzantine chant. Also includes extensive bibliography, an inventory of the microfilms and photos of manuscripts housed at the University for the study of Byzantine chant, and the standard abridged version of the Sticherarion (Byzantine notated chant book) downloadable in .pdf format.

Munich Digitization Center, Digital Library

The Munich DigitiZation Center (MDZ) is the digital imagining website of the Bavarian State Library and associated institutions. The website includes content in German, English, and Italian. The MDZ is responsible for digitizing and publishing images of the State Library’s rich medieval manuscript and early print book holdings, which total well over 15,000 items. The collections comprise items from across Europe particularly but also items from around the world. The library’s holdings are especially rich in early medieval manuscripts.

The MDZ has both an online catalog for searching in addition to regularly updated online exhibitions. New items are added to the digital collections continuously. The catalog allows for advanced searching by title, date, and author. Each entry in the image database contains a catalog entry as well as the ability to download images in differing sizes and format. Also included are IIIF-compliant images and a Mirador viewer.

Narrative Sources

Narrative Sources aims to offer an exhaustive and critical survey of all the narrative sources originating from the medieval Low Countries. The database is intended to inventory all texts which describe the past in a narrative way: annals, chronicles, letters, diaries, poems, saint’s lives, genealogies etc. Narrative Sources covers present day Belgium and the Netherlands as well as those areas which belonged historically to the Low Countries but are part now of France (French Flanders, French Hainault) or Germany (East Frisia, the northern Rhineland). The texts inventoried in Narrative Sources date from the sixth to the first half of the sixteenth century.

New York Public Library Digital Collections

The New York Public Library’s Digital Collections is the NYPL’s digital image archive. It contains a continuously updated selection of digital exhibitions in addition to a collection of over 4,000 images of manuscripts and many more of early printed books. The NYPL’s digital collections are global in outlook, including manuscripts from across the globe. Its holdings range from the 1200s onward, with strengths in the later Middle Ages and early print as well as Jewish manuscripts and books.

Digital entries include catalog information, multiple options for download though only in JPG format, and a timeline of information about the item where available. Digital Collections entries also link back to the NYPL’s catalog entries. Items are made freely available with citations for each item available to copy and paste.

Ogham in 3D

The ultimate aim of the Ogham in 3D project is to digitise and record in 3d as many as possible of the approximately four hundred surviving Ogham stones and to make the resulting 3D models freely available on this website as part of a multi-disciplinary archive of Ogham stones.

* National History Day Selected Resource *

Old English Newsletter Bibliography Database

Compiled by Roy Liuzza at the University of Tennessee, the OEN Bibliography Database is a searchable catalog of the annual Old English Newsletter bibliography, published annually from 1973 to 2009. Once users have registered for a free account, they can search the newsletters’ over 23,000 entries for topics related to the study of Old English. Each entry includes publication information for articles, books, and digital projects. Users may also search by topic, date, or subject. The database is no longer updated, but is a useful resource for scholars and students of early English history, literature, and cultures.

Online Medieval Sources Bibliography

Searchable annotated bibliography of over 5000 modern print and online editions of medieval primary sources, intended for a broad audience including high school and college level instructors as well as more advanced scholars or enthusiasts. 

Read More →

ONP: Dictionary of Old Norse Prose

The Dictionary of Old Norse Prose (ONP) is an online dictionary containing over 50,000 words derived from texts of Old Norse prose. Published by the University of Copenhagen, the project is ongoing as of 2020 with new words added regularly. The dictionary is searchable in a number of ways: by headword, text, manuscript, type of word, and numerous others. ONP makes it corpus data freely downloadable and has added information like the genre of text from which the word derives or whether it used in poetry or legal texts as well. Users can also view the words contained in particular texts or manuscripts and download that data for research purposes. When available, the ONP links to images of manuscripts and freely available editions of texts. Dictionary entries contain a list of sources in which the word appears in addition to its grammatical qualities.

Additionally, the project includes an expansive bibliography and has an active social media presence that offers a word-of-the-day feature.

Orbis Latinus Online

A digitization of Johann Georg Theodor Grässe’s Orbis Latinus; Lexikon lateinischer geographischer Namen des Mittelalters und der Neuzeit (1909), providing cross-referenced modern equivalents of Latin place names.

Read More →

ORBIS – The Stanford Geospatial  Network Model of the Roman World

ORBIS: The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World reconstructs the time cost and financial expense associated with a wide range of different types of travel in antiquity. The model is based on a simplified version of the giant network of cities, roads, rivers and sea lanes that framed movement across the Roman Empire. It broadly reflects conditions around 200 CE but also covers a few sites and roads created in late antiquity.

The model consists of 632 sites, most of them urban settlements but also including important promontories and mountain passes, and covers close to 10 million square kilometers (~4 million square miles) of terrestrial and maritime space. 301 sites serve as sea ports. The baseline road network encompasses 84,631 kilometers (52,587 miles) of road or desert tracks, complemented by 28,272 kilometers (17,567 miles) of navigable rivers and canals.

* National History Day Selected Resource *

Oxford Cantigas de Santa Maria Database

The Oxford Cantigas de Santa Maria project is a platform containing numerous resources for the study of the 13th-century poems and their musical notation. The 429 poems of the Cantigas are each given an entry and within each entry one can find a synopsis of the poem, description of the miniature, a list of associated miracles, and a bibliography for that poem. Sometimes the poems will have linked recordings of their performance. The project also provides a fully searchable database of the qualities of the Cantigas so that one may search by a number of features, like the miracles, narrative, keywords, or manuscript. Likewise, the website presents an extensive bibliography of work on the poems. The project does not have the rights to reproduce the images of the manuscripts but can provide information on how to access and use them.

Parker Library on the Web

The Parker Library on the Web project is a joint endeavor by the Parker Library at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge and Stanford University to publish images of the roughly 600 medieval manuscripts housed in the library. To date, they have digitized and made freely available over 500 of those manuscripts. The Parker Library is one of the richest collections of early English books in the world, having been gifted the collections by Matthew Parker, the 16th-century Archbishop of Canterbury.

Parker Library on the Web has been at the forefront of library digitization projects. It was an early adopted of the IIIF image format. In addition to a wide range of manuscript images, including detailed images of illuminations, each entry has a detailed cataloging information and a bibliography for the item. Additionally, the platform also presents past digital exhibitions in addition to copious information on how to use the site.

People of Medieval Scotland 1093-1371

People of Medieval Scotland 1093-1371 is a research project administered by King’s College London, University of Glasgow, and University of Edinburgh. The project has created an online database of all Scottish people mentioned in the over 8600 extant documents from the period 1093CE to 1371CE, though names and documents extend into the early 15th century. The database allows a user to search by keywords, people, places, sources, or “factoids,” which are legal events committed to documents. Each entry provides a list of associated people, the type of document, dates, and other documentary evidence as well as the holding institution for the document. When available, the project includes images of the documents in an on-screen viewer.

The project also presents an interactive network map that allows a user to visualize social connections in medieval Scotland. Additionally, the project presents a map of Scotland that a user may lay over with places and events as derived from the documentary evidence.

The database and its materials are free to use. The project is ongoing with the period under consideration extended in recent updates.

Piers Plowman Electronic Archive

Published by the Society for Early English and Norse Electronic Texts (SEENET), the Piers Plowman Electronic Archive is a collaborative, peer-reviewed, and open-source web platform for the study of the texts and manuscripts of the late Middle English poem, Piers PlowmanPiers Plowman is a poem rich in versions and variants, and the project sets as its goal the publication of digital editions of each of the over 50 manuscript witnesses to the poem. Thus far it has published eight manuscripts in addition to the a reconstructed digital edition of the archetype of the B text of the poem. Many other manuscript witnesses are in the process of being edited as of 2020.

Each manuscript’s edition displays the text and material features of the manuscript along with the images from that manuscript. Users can also compare the text of individual manuscripts to the edited version of the text, making the platform particularly useful for comparing variant readings. Users will also find teaching materials for Piers Plowman along with an extensive bibliography on textual and manuscript studies as they relate to the poem.

Though image copyrights are held by institutions, the edited editions are open for use with citation. The source code and markup for the Archive is also downloadable.

Princeton Dante Project

An online tool for the study of Dante’s Divine Comedy, providing a searchable side-by-side comparison of the Petrocchi edition of the Comedy with Hollander’s translation.

Read More →

Project Gutenberg

Project Gutenberg, first begun in the 1970s, aims to provide free access to reading materials via the internet. The project currently includes over 50,000 open-access works, covering multiple subjects and representative of many time periods. Some of the works will be of interest to medievalists; editions of the Divine Comedy can be found in Italian on the site, for example, and other works of potential interest, both primary and secondary, are certainly to be found within the large collection. However, both the search and browse functions are outdated given current search engines. Even given the large number of volumes included, medieval works are more sparse than one might desire for inclusion in the MDR.

Prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England (PASE)

PASE is a web-accessible relational database of recorded inhabitants of Anglo-Saxon England from the late sixth to the late 11th century, drawn from sources like the Domesday Book, saints’ lives, inscriptions, chronicles, and other evidence.

Read More →

REFRAIN

A searchable database of medieval refrains, or fragments of music or text that circulated between songs of various types during the thirteenth century.

Read More →

Restoring Lost Songs: Boethius’ Consolation of Philosophy

Restoring Lost Songs is a Cambridge University project to reconstruct the music accompanying Boethius’ Consolation of Philosophy. Though it is understood that early medieval composers set music to Boethius’ lyrics, it remains unclear what the melody of those performance sounded like due to the notation systems used. The project seeks to offer possible restorations of the music in text and performance. On the platform, one may find a list of medieval manuscripts containing notated versions of the Consolation in addition to links to repositories and sometimes images of the manuscript. Additionally, a user may search by song to find in which manuscripts it appears.

The project has also published scores in modern notation of possible restorations of some of the lyrics. Additionally, the project offers numerous essays on topics from instruments and notation, to performance practices. Finally, the platform offers numerous video and audio recordings of their restorations in performance in addition to teaching materials. The site is occasionally updated as of 2020.

Richard L. Crocker, A Gregorian Archive

On this website you can hear, chant by chant, the whole early repertory of Gregorian chant, the standard repertory of nearly six hundred chants for the Propers of the Roman Mass. This is a study edition for enjoying and comparing recorded solo performances by Richard Crocker and three or four friends, of Gregorian chant sung according to current tradition updated with the results of current research on the earliest medieval notation.

Roman de la Rose Digital Library

A searchable catalog of digitized manuscripts containing the Roman de la Rose, an allegorical love poem in the form of a dream vision composed in Old French in the 13th century. The current collection of 130 manuscripts (of an estimated 320 total) may be browsed by repository, shelf mark, date, origin, or illustrations, allowing cross-manuscript comparison of illustrations and sections of text.  Much of the data downloadable in .csv format.

* National History Day Selected Resource *