Relaunch digiberichte.de

Second Relaunch of www.digiberichte.de

“Digitized travel accounts of late medieval and early modern Europe” was originally supported by the Academy of Sciences and Humanities at Göttingen within a project on “Höfe und Residenzen im spätmittelalterlichen Reich” (1996 – 2011). The website encountered several relaunches and improvements since the original release in 2006. Major steps have been the integration of the three volumes “Europäische Reiseberichte des späten Mittelalters. Eine analytische Bibliographie”, ed. by Werner Paravicini and published 1993 – 2001. Another milestone has been the integration of maps of the dragable markers of the itinieraries, adding some crowdsourcing element to the project. Finally it is time to integrate the data into a modern CMS environment and improve the KWIC functionality of the platform by using an Apache Solr Index instead of database SQL search (coming soon). This is an ongoing project…

Digiberichte.de aims to advance research on late medieval and early modern European travel accounts. This project provides digitized editions and research literature on approx. 375 different travels and pilgrimages through Europe in historical times. The bibliographical database allows quick reference for the travel accounts. Due to copy right restrictions only literature from the 19th century and earlier is provided in full text.

The majority of the material provided here is based on the so called “analytical bibliographies” of medieval travel accounts that have been edited under the direction of Prof. Werner Paravicini and published by Peter Lang. Initially only bibliographies on German, French and Dutch travel-accounts have been published, but there was always the idea of collecting material for the other European countries (especially Italy, England, Spain, Portugal, Scandinavia and East-Europe) als well. Digiberichte.de therefore collects information also for travelers from these countries that left accounts of their journey.

How to use:
Travelers are classified by their native countries. The language of the account itself was not a structural criteria of the bibliographies. Drop down lists on the left provide access to the travelers from different countries and their itineraries (app. 70% of all travels in the database). The datasets can equally be displayed through selcting a particular country on the clickable map of Europe. The website also provides a bibliography on travel and pilgrimages in the later middle ages. You can access searchable fulltext PDF-Files of older editions and articles within the website. You may also search with up to three strings (space = boolean AND) in the fulltext of all digitized literature. For the copyright protected material only the number of hits with a reference to the corresponding text is provided, for the copyright free texts you can see the keyword in context (KWIC) when moving the mouse over the reference.

Limitations:
Due to the origin oft he material that was originally not collected for digitalization, the quality of PDF-files may vary from one to another. Therefore OCR quality can be very poor in several files. Please bear that in mind when seaching within full text. Not finding a hit for a particular word or strings does not mean that it does not exist in the original texts. Furthermore Gothic print was not recognized with OCR. Another limitation is the (sometimes) poor standard of bibliographical references. These references were initially not intended to be published but were used to collect data for the printed versions of the “Analytical bibliographies of travel accounts of the later Middle Ages”.

Credits:
Beside the authors of the analytical bibliographies the following students have considerably contributed to the project with their work: Karen Schleeh, Rudolph Sohn and Steffen Berger.
J.W.

 

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