Paleography: reading old handwriting 1500-1800. A practical online tutorial.
Tutorial by the National Archives of Great Britain. Good examples and a handy “Quick reference guide” to such matters as calendars and money.
English Handwriting 1500-1700: an online course
An outstanding site, particularly strong in examples with accompanying transcriptions and notes.
Online Tuition in the Paleography of Scottish Documents, 1500-1750
Not to be outdone by the Sassenachs, the Scottish produced their own website. Note that this site covers down to 1750: handwriting modernizes later in Scotland.
Introduction to English Paleography
Created by Dave Postles of the West Sussex Record Council. One of the first British paleography sites and still very good.
French paleography to 1789:
Archive of an extensive course in French Early Modern handwriting. In French. Excellent examples and accompanying transcriptions.
Wonderful site for Suetterlin and earlier German scripts generally. You can even type your name in Suetterlin.
Alphabetisierung und Schriftkultur in die Frühen Neuzeit
Not really a paleography website, but contains scores of examples of German signatures ca. 1800 accompanied by transcription. Great practice.
German genealogy Internet portal:
Contains a variety of script alphabets and examples. Designed to aid genealogists; quite useful.
Exercises in Latin Paleography:
(mostly earlier Latin hands but a few
examples of later documents)
Spanish and Latin American:
Curso de paleografía latino-hispano-americana
Much of this is medieval, but try the examples in the “Neografia” section.
The English Calendar
Does ecclesiastical calendar, regnal years in England; also converts Old Style to New Style and does days of the week. Particularly useful for those “Tuesday, February 10” dates on familiar letters.
The Perpetual Calendar: A Helpful Tool for Postal Historians
Toke Norby’s site. Not just for postal historians—also good for the French Republican calendar. If you ever have to decode “19 Frimaire, an.8” you will be grateful to him.
A very basic site for American genealogists, but has links to some useful handlists of name abbreviations and the like.
Early Modern Resources
Maintained by Sharon Howard; fairly recent site, covers “roughly 1500-1800.” Good links to eprint articles, online resources, etc.
Jack Lynch’s Eighteenth-Century Chronology
The long eighteenth, year by year. Useful, but tends to be fuller for post1750.
A “deterritorialized hypertext project” which has its own introductory essay on its own philosophy. Luckily not dechronologicized; can be searched by year or topic.
Has an expansive enough view of “Romantic” to be quite useful for the eighteenth century as well.
The Clergy of the Church of England Database 1540-1835
In progress. Can be amazingly useful.
La Crosse Public Library History (Chronology) resources:
A list of timelines on the Web. Very good
This list of resources is maintained by Diane Ducharme, Archivist, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. rev 6/08