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Research Materials

The Dragoman Renaissance Research Platform allows site visitors to interact with research materials through a variety of perspectives and entry points. You may search for specific items or sets of items, or click on one of the collections below to browse it. New collections will be added as the project develops.
At the present, you may view one of the following collections:

  • Dragoman Person Records: A bio-bibliographical database of 116 dragomans who worked with Venetian diplomats in Istanbul and with Ottoman merchants and dignitaries in Venice in the period 1550-1700. This evolving database allows researchers to trace dragomans' life trajectories and kinship, financial, and professional ties, as well as their translations and other textual and visual output (in both manuscript and print) in a variety of genres, including dragomans’ wills, portraits, and commissioned works.
  • Archival objects: Digital surrogates of 11 fascicles (totaling over 2000 pages) of copies of Ottoman official records with contemporaneous facing translation into Italian, collated, bound, and archived in the house of the Venetian representative in Istanbul starting ca. 1590, and now preserved in the Venetian State Archives in the fondo Bailo a Costantinopoli, Carte Turche. Please note that due to copyright restrictions, this part of the platform is restricted to members of the dragoman research group.
  • Carte turche, Ottoman Records: summaries, structured data (sender, receiver, date, genre, placenames, persons and magistracies mentioned) and partial transcriptions of approx. 1300 copies of Ottoman Turkish official records from the period 1589-1670 collated in the series above.
  • Carte turche, Italian Records: transcriptions and structured data of the Italian translations (mostly signed by the individual dragomans responsible for them) of the above.
  • Venetian Representatives to the Porte: A database of Venetian ambassadors' and consuls' writings from Istanbul from the early sixteenth to the late eighteenth centuries (many of which remain in manuscript in the Venetian archives), based on an index prepared by Prof. Maria Pia Pedani at Ca' Foscari University in Venice
  • Bibliographic citations: A current and regularly updated bibliography of over 200 works of scholarship on dragomans and other early modern Mediterranean cultural intermediaries. In the future this collection will provide access to PDFs/full text of team members' publications and other Open Access texts.

In phase II, this platform will also provide access to:

  • Ottoman Prime Minister’s Archive, Ecnebi Defteri, registers 13-18: English summaries, partial transcriptions, and structured data from approximately 500 records in Ottoman Turkish concerning Venetian activities in the Ottoman Empire, c. 1605-c. 1680
  • Zadar State Archives, Dragomans Fondo: English summaries and structured data from approximately 150 records in Serbo-Croatian of documents in Italian and Ottoman Turkish collated and translated by Venetian dragomans, c. 1621-1680
  • School of Oriental and African Studies, London, Paget Papers, boxes 52-53: summaries and structured data from 60 letters sent by Venetian dragomans Giacomo and Tommaso Tarsia to English Ambassador Extraordinary to the Porte Lord Paget, 1694-1699
  • Koper Municipal Archives, Slovenia, Tarsia Family Archives, KP 312: English summaries, partial transcriptions, and structured data from dozens of copies of archival records related to the Tarsia family, whose members served as Venetian dragomans in Istanbul in the seventeenth century
  • Dozens of records from various series and fondos in the Venetian State Archives related to dragomans' professional, familial, and economic activities
  • A set of annotated glossaries for Ottoman and Venetian official genres, magistracies, place names, and more