Horizons of Interest: the Geographical Scope of Knowledge in Early Modern Chronicles

Scholars agree that cultural changes in early modern Europe (c. 1500-1800) were both accompanied and  precipitated by an information revolution. The use of printed media filtered down into local chronicles.  These are hand-written narratives produced usually by middle class authors, that recorded events and  phenomena they considered important (local politics, upheavals, climate, prices, crime, deaths, but also  supra local and international news). During the seventeenth and eighteenth century, these chronicles  came to include news and topics deriving from a greater variety of information sources and,  presumably, from an increasingly global information network. The question this project wishes to answer is in what way the geographical scope of the chroniclers’ access to information and news  changed in the period 1500-1850. What places are mentioned by these authors in their accounts? How  did the ratios between local, supra local or regional and international news develop over time?

Researchers: Erika Kuijpers, Ronald Siebes