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Links and tools

Introduction to History

Jordan, Stefan: Theories and methods in the study of history, 2nd edition, Paderborn et al., 2013

Freytag, Nils/ Piereth, Wolfgang: History coursebook. Tips and rules for scientific study, 5th edition, Paderborn et al., 2011


Introduction to the history of the early modern period

Burkhardt, Johannes: German history in the early modern period. Munich, 2009

Emich, Birgit: Studying the history of the early modern period. Constance, 2006.

Gotthard, Axel: The Old Empire 1495-1806, 5th edition, Darmstadt, 2013

Kümin, Beat: The European World 1500-1800: An Introduction to Early Modern History. London, 2009.

Lundt, Bea: European division in the early modern period 1500-1800. A history of culture and mentality. Darmstadt, 2009.

Maissen, Thomas: History of the early modern period (C.H. Beck Knowledge,Vol. 2760). Munich, 2013.

Münch, Paul: Ways of life in the early modern period. Frankfurt/Berlin, 1992.

Schorn-Schütte, Luise: History of Europe in the early modern period. Paderborn, et al., 2009.

Stollberg-Rilinger, Barbara: The Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. From the end of the medieval period to 1806 (C.H. Beck Knowledge; Vol. 2399). Munich, 2006

Vocelka, Karl: Early modern period 1500-1800 (UTB Basics). 2nd edition, Constance, 2016

Wiesner-Hanks, Merry E.: Early Modern Europe 1450-1789 (Cambridge History of Europe). 2nd edition, Cambridge, 2013


Links to research portals, libraries and e-journals


Clio-online is a virtual specialist library funded by the DFG, which provides access to comprehensive online resources for historiography. is an online portal for the study of history. Basic information on the periods and key themes of history and introductions and tips for scientific research and work are all published here.



Webhistoriker is a portal which clearly displays the history of the early modern period, the technical principles, literature tips, links and interesting facts on the early modern period.


Introduction to the early modern period (University of Munster)

A comprehensive technical introduction to the early modern period is offered by the website of the specialist area of history/philosophy at the University of Munster. Central topics, structures and theories on the early modern period are presented. A glossary and link tips are also offered.



H-Soz-Kult is a communication platform for historians in which current technical publications, lectures, research projects, reviews, conference reports and much more information is published.



Sehepunkte offers a range of current and archived reviews of technical literature on the early modern period.



E-journal on the history of the early modern period which was published between 2002 and 2013. The publications, with articles on various topics on the early modern period, are available in the online archive of the homepage.


Digitalised printed sources

The zvdd is a portal to German digital reproductions of printed works from the 15th century to this day. It enables consistent research, whereby you can search, not only for titles and authors, but also for the printer, printer locations or publication dates and periods, essay titles, chapter titles and tables of contents.


Digital collections of the Bavarian state library / Munich Digitalisation Centre (MDZ)
The Munich Digitalisation Centre offers a variety of scanned and sometimes extensively annotated works from early modern journalism, including lexicons, flyers, legal sources and much more.


VD 16 /VD 17 /VD 18
The directories of printed works published in the German speaking world in the 16th and 17th century is a retrospective bibliography and allows extensive research into sources. The catalogue of prints from the 18th century (VD 18), which was initiated but only presented in parts to the public, also contains digital reproductions of the prints listed, along with the directory.

VD 16:

VD 17:

VD 18:


Early English Books Online (EEBO)
The Early English Books Online database has over 125,000 digital reproductions of printed sources written in English, dating from the invention of the printing press until the year 1700. The database offers comprehensive search functions, with which the large corpus of sources can be refined.

Online access through the digital library of University of Marburg


Digitalised collections in the Uni Library Bielefeld
The university library in Bielefeld offers a selection of publications from the 15th century to the beginning of the 20th century in their collection of digital reconstructions. This includes numerous newspapers, including a large selection of newspapers from the Enlightenment.


Bibliotheca Augustana in the Augsburg University of Applied Sciences
This digital library not only contains transcribed texts in European literature, but also other types of texts, such as legal sources from ancient times up to the present day, in the original language, organised by region, period and author.


Gallica - Bibliothèque national de France
The bibliothèque national de France (National Library of France) offers digitalised printed books in image format, books downloadable in text form and many images and cards.


Digital Scriptorium
Digital Scriptorium is an image database containing several American libraries and presenting medieval and early modern letters, a number of sources of which are available online.


Heidelberg’s historical portfolio - digital
The university library of Heidelberg has made extensive amounts of source material accessible for free, including the digital Bibliotheca Palatina, records of the history of Heidelberg’s town and university, numerous newspapers, legal sources and many other sources on the history of the early modern period


Contemporary reference books
Zedler’s Universal Lexicon
The universal lexicon, published between 1732 and 1754 by Johann Heinrich Zedler, includes over 248,000 items on a wide spectrum of areas of knowledge, for example, geography, biography, jurisdiction, medicine, astrology, economy, music, zoology and philosophy, skilled crafts and trades and religion. Using the lexicon, the level of knowledge, fields of interest and understanding of specific contemporary topics can be recreated.


“Economic encyclopaedia or general system of economies of the state, town, home and farming” is the title of the most comprehensive encyclopaedias in the German speaking world. The publication, founded by Johann Georg Krünitz, was released between 1773 and 1858 in 242 volumes and addresses diverse topics of life, such as managing the home, region and state and thus represents one of the most important sources for research into the early modern society, farming, economy and technology.


Technical reference books

Encyclopaedia of the Early Modern Period
Four centuries, from 1450 to 1850, are contained in 4000 articles. Important background information, contexts and developments are presented, as well as a critical overview of the state of research and bibliography of the respective topics.

Accessible online through the digital libraries of the university library in Marburg


The Grotefend
The pertinent pocketbook “Calendar of the German medieval period and the early modern era”by Hermann Grotefend (1845-1931) is also available in digital form. Through numerous overviews and tools, it enables the conversion of historical data to the modern calendar. The online edition of the reference book also offers a glossary as well as data collection function.


The Grimm dictionary
The German dictionary of Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm. Comprising 16 volumes in 32 partial volumes and developed between 1854 and 1961, it is the largest and most comprehensive dictionary of the German language since the 16th century. Therefore, it is an important source on the history of science and it is also a suitable reference book on terms and definitions and changing terms in the German language.


Digital dictionaries (dictionary network)
On the website of the University of Trier, there are several digital dictionaries: including the German dictionary of Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm (1854-1960), the Middle High German dictionary of Georg Friedrich Benecke, Wilhelm Müller and Friedrich Zarncke (1854-1866), the Middle High German pocket dictionary by Matthias Lexer (1872-1878) and a research book on Middle High German vocabulary, a “Guide to the glossaries of such Middle High German texts, which have been redeveloped in the many years after the completion of the lexer through re-publication”. (Blurb by the Uni Trier)


Early modern German dictionary
The early modern German dictionary, FWB online, is the online version of the early modern German dictionary (FWB). The early modern German dictionary describes the vocabulary of the High German language from the middle of the 14th century to the middle of the 17th century.


German legal dictionary
The dictionary of the research centre of the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences comprises legal historical terms in the most broad sense from the beginning of the written record until approx. 1800.


Pocket dictionary on German legal history (HRG)
The pocket dictionary on German legal history is a reference book on history of law in Germany. It offers articles on judicial and legal historical technical terms as well as important persons and developments in legal history.


TRE (Theologische Realenzyklopädie)
The standard reference book for theological terms can be found in full digital text form in the databases of the university library in Marburg.


General and New German Biography (1875-1912)
The General German Biography (ADB) and the Modern German Biography (NDB) offers certified knowledge in 50,000 articles on more than 730,000 persons in the German speaking world from the early medieval period until the present day. Furthermore, further links to lexicons, sources and literature are also offered.