A quick update on the progress of one significant part of this project: making translated extracts from the duchess’s Letters publicly available (and for free) via a fully searchable database. All translation work is now complete, and the Team are now working with the University of Exeter’s Digital Humanities Lab on the final stages of the database and website design.
The public launch date is mid-August 2021, and it will be accessed through the same address as this blog: http://revolutionaryduchess.exeter.ac.uk. Subscribe to this blog to get an alert, or simply check back at this address again from the second half of August.
The database, ‘Revolutionary Duchess: The Elbeuf Letters, 1788-1794’, will give unprecedented access to this remarkable source, translated into English for the first time. Features include:
-Extracts from 23 Letters and 8 shorter note entries, written between December 1788 and January 1794 and totaling over 12,000 words
-For the first time in English, access to a unique voice on key events in the French Revolution including: the Fall of the Bastille; the Great Fear; the Flight to Varennes; the fall of the monarchy on 10 August 1792; the September Massacres; and the executions of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette.
-Detail on the everyday, lived experience of Revolution, both in Paris and in the countryside, including: popular violence; Revolutionary political culture; emigration; conspiracy fears; and the infrastructure and impact of the Terror.
-The database is fully searchable, with embedded links in each extract giving the reader information about who and what the duchess is writing about
-The duchess’s writing can be accessed chronologically or browsed by theme. The material is also listed via the people, places and organisations mentioned in each extract.
Please keep an eye out for the launch announcement in mid-August 2021. We are looking forward to sharing this exciting new resource with you all!