This project, begun in May 2020, revolves around the production of a historical and critical digital edition of sources on Habsburg–Ottoman diplomacy from the beginnings of diplomatic relations between the Habsburg and the Ottoman Empires at the turn of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries to the demise of both empires at the end of the First World War. This undertaking is a “born-digital edition” and hence makes use of the full potential of digital editing technology. The edited sources are published open access as freely licensed open research data for further use.

The edition includes all sources of Western and Ottoman origin documenting the diplomatic contacts, namely reports, correspondence, instructions, minutes, invoices, Seyahatnâme and Sefâretnâme, but also published sources (pamphlets and newspaper articles), contractual agreements, maps (or cartographic depictions) and travel reports and diaries. It also includes pictorial sources (legation portraits, allegories, historical paintings etc.) and material culture (e.g. gifts). Sources written in Ottoman Turkish are transliterated and also translated into English.

Due to the broad range of their content, these sources are of great importance to the history of the Habsburg Empire and its successor states, the Ottoman Empire and the Balkan region. They contain a wealth of information on anthropological and cultural topics, the circulation of knowledge, trans-culturalism and empire building. Furthermore, they are of great societal and political relevance beyond the world of scholarship, since they offer profound insights into the historical dimensions of relations between Christianity and Islam and between Europe and Asia as well as Turkey’s involvement in European history.

Project team

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Arno Strohmeyer (principal investigator and contact)

Mag. Dr. Stephan Kurz (research associate, digitisation)

Mag. Dr. Manuela Mayer (research associate)

Dr. Yasir Yilmaz (research associate)

Prof. Dr. Georg Vogeler (cooperation partner ZIM University Graz)

Jakob Sonnberger, BA (Tech Suport ZIM University Graz)

Project term

Since May 2020