A medical book in an Avignonese pharmacy (1492)
Object of the Month
One of the most important transmitters of the medical knowledge of ancient Greece was a Nestorian Christian, Yuhanna ibn Masawaih (d. 243 AH/857CE), a court physician who was active in Baghdad in the first half of the 9th century. Mesue, as he was known in Christian circles, was the author of several medical treatises, including Disorders of the eye (Daghal al-ain) and a book of medical aphorisms known in Arabic as al-Nawādir al-ṭibbiyya. Though not as familiar to historians today as Ibn Sina...
“Adieu, veau, vache, cochon, couvée!” - The inventory of the goods of Franciscus Botelhe
Inventory of the Month
On the 4th of August, 1434, Franciscus Botelhe, of Saint-Jurs, was declared guilty by the royal court of Moustiers for having set fire to a pinery (pineda) while herding oxen three days earlier, on Sunday, the 1st of August. Following his arrest on August 2, Franciscus had been brought to the royal prison of Moustiers along with his fellow herdsman, Petrus Leporis of Marcoux, who was charged with the same crime. The village of Saint-Jurs today is located in the French department of Alpes-de-...
Poems of Household Goods: Gendered Inventories of Economic and Social Capital
From the late Middle Ages, peculiar inventories have survived within so-called "poems of household goods." At least twelve of these poems have been handed down in German since the 14th century.✱ Similar poems in French already existed in the 13th century.✱ From today's perspective, they may seem quite strange. Resembling actual inventories, their detailed descriptions of household goods on the one hand give us vivid insights into the material furnishings of late medieval and early modern...READ MORE
ALME is a collaborative, cross-disciplinary project that seeks to increase our understanding of Europe’s material horizons during the later Middle Ages, an era when changing patterns of production and consumption altered the material world and transformed the relationship between people and things.
DALME has developed a novel methodology that focuses on the extraction of information about material culture from documentary sources, such as household or estate inventories, in a manner that makes it possible to seamlessly integrate textual objects with their tangible counterparts from archaeological excavations and museum collections.
Drawing upon cross-disciplinary practice and advances in digital scholarship, the project aims to make vast amounts of material culture accessible online as open, well-structured and machine-actionable datasets readily amenable to computational analysis, together with the necessary tools, standards, and documentation to enable new research and facilitate dissemination.
Based in the Department of History at Harvard University, DALME brings together a growing network of researchers from institutions across the US and Europe.
We are grateful to the following organizations for supporting the project.