The Serendipity Engine

Cultural Heritage Sources

Arkyves is a collection of sources for the study of the History of Culture. It is an aggregated database, but it does much more than passively wait for your research questions. It actively stimulates knowledge discovery because it presents the items in its catalogue in ever-changing thematic combinations.

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Have a look at the latest addition to Arkyves: three editions of Juan de Boria, Empresas morales

  1. Prague, Nigrinus, 1581 [ Glasgow University Library, Stirling Maxwell 204 ]
  2. Franciscus Foppens, Brussels 1680 (with additions by the grandson Francisco de Borja) [University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, 096.1 B644e 1680 ]
  3. Moralische Sinnbilder, Berlin, Liebpert, 1698 (German translation) [ Glasgow University Library, Stirling Maxwell 207a ]
Ordering and re-ordening motifs, themes, stories and iconographic details in kaleidoscopic fashion Arkyves will make you find many things you did not realize you were looking for.

What medieval people thought crocodiles looked like, or animals in general. Do research on the concept of carrying someone on your back, or envy or love.

Look at the topsy-turvy world

Find some pictures of saint Francis, or of the effects of drinking too much, or of people wearing spectacles, reading and writing, or digging. Gather material for a study of childhood or old age, of the poor or the rich, or simply of cats, dogs, or wild animals or foodstuffs ... or a tableau of cats with fishes?

Interested in typography and printing?

Here is our collection of printers devices, ornaments and decorated initials.