Priests’ libraries – Part 2: making our data operable

by Jaap Geraerts and Teresa Wendel

In a previous blog post that appeared almost three years ago (tempus fugit!), I introduced a small (pilot) project on priests’ libraries from the early modern Dutch Republic. Since then, a lot has happened – in general, but also in relation to this project. Apart from the publication of a chapter in an edited volume on this topic, two research assistants, Sarah Büttner and Teresa Wendel, have patiently and conscientiously identified (most of) the books mentioned in the inventories that form the basis of this project and linked them, whenever possible, to records in online catalogues. Moreover, the latter has created a data model that we developed further in an iterative manner. Ultimately, this data model makes it possible to discern trends within individual libraries and across them, thus furthering our knowledge of the intellectual and pastoral formation of priests serving in the Holland Mission (the Catholic mission in the Dutch Republic), among other topics. This blog post will offer a glimpse of the process of developing a data model and making our data operable in a graph database.

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Priests’ libraries in the Dutch Republic

By Jaap Geraerts and Sarah Büttner

The scholarly importance of “Priesterbibliotheken” (priests’ libraries) is well-known: they provide insight into what Catholic priests serving in the Holland Mission read or at least thought useful to own. Moreover, such libraries can tell us more about early modern Dutch Catholic spirituality, but also about the wider interest in books outside the remit of theology and pastoral care. Lastly, in particular libraries from the eighteenth century will also help to enhance our understanding of the schism which occurred in the Dutch Catholic Church. “Priesterbibliotheken (priests’ libraries) in the Dutch Republic” is a small pilot project which started at the IEG DH Lab in early 2021. The project aims to capture the bibliographical information contained in manuscript inventories of the libraries of Catholic priests serving in the Republic and making this available in digital form.
„Priests’ libraries in the Dutch Republic“ weiterlesen

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