The project makes a systematic effort to study the history of the Holy Monastery of Zograf in Mount Athos, based primarily on literary and documentary primary sources housed in the rich archive and library of the monastery. An interdisciplinary team of scholars trained in Byzantine and Ottoman studies, as well as Slavicists, computer linguists, art historians, and musicologists examine the heritage of the Zograf monastery as an organic entity and attempt to develop a system for an integrated and linked database of descriptions of the manuscripts and documents kept in the monastic repositories.
The research strategy of the Ottoman group, lead by Dr. Boykov, envisages a series of publications that include a text critical analysis of the most important Ottoman documents in the archive of the Zograf monastery from the mid-15th to the early 20th centuries. Moreover, the project developed a TEI-based method for text encoding of Ottoman documents that have not been yet transliterated, thus creating interlinked indexes of individuals, toponyms, and subjects that contain spatial and temporal reference, establishing connections to other sections of the archive. One of the project’s ambitions is to facilitate the creation of a cooperative initiative that will integrate other archives of Athonite monasteries in a single interoperative platform that can ease research on the history, economy, landed estates, human geography, and exchange between the Athonite community and the “outside” world, as it also has the potential to indicate internal dynamics, taking place on the monastic peninsula from the Middle Ages to Modernity. Thus far the project has received funding by the Bulgarian Science Fund and by the Ministry of Science and Education of Bulgaria.