Cofinancing OZR FWO Hercules Equipment: DH-CoDe - Digital Historical Collection of Court Depositions from the Southern Low Countries (18th-19th centuries).

Project Details


DH-CoDe is a digital collection of witness depositions and
suspect interrogations preserved at criminal courts in
eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Belgium, as well
as the infrastructure through which this collection is
realised, managed and exploited. Depositions and
interrogations offer rare insight into quotidian historical
practices missing in other sources, and into the speech
ordinary witnesses and suspects used to describe those
practices. Such sources are not only of great interest to
historians, but also provide a wealth of information to
linguists, legal historians, sociologists, and other social
scientists. The content management system that DH-CoDe
will develop aims to overcome existing infrastructural
bottlenecks in the use of these sources by providing a
single, fully digitized, searchable, and annotated database
of court testimonies from the eighteenth and early
nineteenth centuries. Four thematic and method-specific
modules will test the design of the corpus and content
management system, while preparing the data for specific
research orientations: a) geospatial analysis; b) historical
sociolinguistics; c) topic modelling & correspondence
analysis; and d) criminology. DH-CoDe brings together an
interdisciplinary consortium of scholars from VUB and
UGent to create a research tool and corpus that has the
potential to fundamentally transform our understanding of
the modernisation process in Belgian history, as well as the
methodology to study it.
Effective start/end date1/05/1830/04/23


  • history