Thu, 23.05.2024 – 25.05.2024

Managing the Prince

Hidden Actors and the Prosopography of Pre-modern Rulership | Kickoff Conference of the SFB Managing Maximilian

Albrecht Dürer - Portrait of Maximilian I., KHM Wien

Premodern rule deeply relied upon personal relationships; rulership depended on interactions of formal rulers and those who implemented or influenced their intentions. The shaping of politics and dynastic ambitions, the exercise of rule, the consolidation of administration, the prince’s sense of his or her self and the staging of power cannot be disentangled. All those in charge of these tasks were key actors in the making of rulership.

By using a prosopographical approach, the large scale SFB project “Managing Maximilian (1493-1519). Persona, Politics, and Personnel through the Lens of Digital Prosopography“ (ManMAX) intends to show that power, politics, and their staging, can only be interpreted through a profound investigation of personal relations and interactions. Inspired by the cultural history of politics and New Institutionalism, it aims at a new assessment of Maximilian’s reign by backing a qualitative interpretation with a large-scale dataset. Guided by an interdisciplinary perspective, ManMAX intends to raise our knowledge of this emperor’s rule to a new scale and increase our broader understanding of rule as a process of negotiation between a multitude of agents.

The project focusses on the thousands of actors in Maximilian's rule, administration, artistic and cultural production and to relate them to one another in the course of a major source digesting campaign and by means of a (factoid-based) data collection. Marking the end of the first year of collaborative work, this conference presents the main research strands to an international audience. Moreover, itexposes the objectives and digital tools of the project to collegial discussion and criticism in a still early working phase in order to gather suggestions and advice. All papers will be presented as a tandem of two interlinked contributions and subsequently discussed by two respondents.  


Thursday, 23 May 2024:

9:00 Opening ceremony

Heinz Faßmann (President, ÖAW) / Christof Gattringer (President, FWF)  / Sebastian Schütze (Rector, University Vienna) / Franz Pichorner (Secretary-General, KHM)

9:20 Introduction and presentation of ManMAX

Andreas Zajic (ÖAW Vienna)

Section I: Prosopography and the People at Court


Markus Debertol/Philipp Laumer (University of Innsbruck):
More than Chancellors and Counsellors. A Database for the Court of Archduke Sigmund of Tyrol

10:15-10:45 Coffee break


Marion Romberg/Christian Standhartinger (ÖAW Vienna):
The Viennese Court – A Prosopographical Portal (VieCPro). Results and Future Potential for Court Research

11:15-11:45 Response:

Torsten Hiltmann (Humboldt University of Berlin) / Jeroen Duindam (University of Leiden)


12:30-14:30 Lunch

Section II: Digital Prosopography and Social Network Analysis


Johannes Preiser-Kapeller (ÖAW Vienna)/Ekaterini Mitsiou (University of Vienna):
Competing Emperors in Exile. Digital Prosopography, Charters and Networks of the Rulers of Nicaea and Trebizond in 13th Century Anatolia

15:00-15:30 Digitising Maximilian:

Richard Hadden/Suzana Sagadin/Marcella Tambuscio/Georg Vogeler (University of Graz):
Towards the Maximilianosphere – Historical Data Modelling, Factoid Extraction, Temporal Network Analysis

15:30-16:00 Coffee break

16:00-16:40 Response:

Márton Karsai (CEU Vienna) / Matthew Hammond (King‘s College London)


18:00 Evening lecture:

Élodie Lecuppre-Desjardin (University of Lille):

“The tree and the forest” – Some Reflections on the “Little Big Men” in the Construction of the State at the End of the Middle Ages

Friday, 24 May 2024:

Section III: Gender Constructions and Gendered Practice

9:30-10:00 Gendering Maximilian:

Christina Lutter/Christof Muigg (University of Vienna):
Why Gender is not just about Women – Gendered Imageries and Practices at Maximilian's Court and Beyond

10:00-10:30 Armouring Maximilian:

Rahul Kulka (KHM, Vienna):
Armour Makes the Man – Boys’ Armours and the Construction of Masculinities in the Environment of Emperor Maximilian I

10:30-11:00 Coffee break

11:00-11:30 Response:

Christina Antenhofer (University of Salzburg) / Markus Pilz (Kunstsammlung Veste Coburg)


12:00- 14:00 Lunch

Section IV: Personal Networks in the Literary and Cultural Sector

14:00-14:30 Contextualising Maximilian:

Elisabeth Klecker/Lukas Ebert (University of Vienna):
Networks of Reception – Contemporary Readers of Encomiastic Poetry

14:30-15:00 Singing Maximilian:

Grantley McDonald (University of Vienna):
A Knight at the Keyboard – Interpreting Paul Hofhaimer’s Grant of Heraldic Arms (1515)

15:00-15:30 Coffee break

15:30-16:00 Response:

Albert Schirrmeister (DHI Paris) /David Fiala (University of Tours)


18:00 Round Table: Managing the Prince – Studying Prosopography beyond the Court

Matthew Hammond (King‘s College London) / Manfred Hollegger (ÖAW Vienna – RI Maximilian) / Julia Burkhardt (LMU, Munich) / Gerhard Lubich (University of Bochum) / Klara Hübner (University of Brno)


Saturday, 25 May 2024

Section V: Personal Networks in Literature, Art and Administration

9:30-10:00 Creating Maximilian:

Stephan Müller/Dennis Wegener (University of Vienna):
Political Songs around Emperor Maximilian I.

10:00-10:30 Depicting Maximilian:

Erwin Pokorny (Albertina, Vienna):
An Early Design Drawing for Gilg Sesselschreiber's “Tomb Statues” of Emperor Maximilian I.

10:30-11:00 Response:

Henrike Manuwald (University of Göttingen) / Andrea Pearson (American University, Washington, D.C.)


11:30-12:00: Coffee break

12:00-12:30 Writing Maximilian:

Sonja Lessacher/Andrea Singh Bottanová (ÖAW Vienna):
Approaches to Maximilian and his Chancery in the Digital Age

12:30-13:00 Response:

Manfred Hollegger (ÖAW Vienna) / Paul M. Dover (Kennesaw State University)


14:00 End




Weltmuseum Wien Forum – KHM, Vienna
Heldenplatz, 1010 Wien

and online via Zoom


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The Zoom link will be sent after registration

evening lecture