Module Identifier HY33220  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Dr Susan J Davies  
Semester Semester 2  
Mutually Exclusive HY33320 Single and Joint Honours History students only, HY33620 , HY33720 , HY33020 , HY33120 , HY33920 , HY34320  
Course delivery Seminars / Tutorials   20 Hours 10 x 2 hours per week  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment Essay: 2 x 1,500 word essays  40%
Semester Assessment Project Work: 1 x 5,000 word project  60%

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module students should be able to:
a) demonstrate a wide range of knowledge of archival sources in manuscript form
b) competently use archival finding aids and locate source material in a Record Office
c) demonstrate the principles of the specialist skills required to read archival material from the 16th to the 19th centuries
d) sift and critically assess historical evidence from primary archival sources
e) work both independently and collaboratively and participate in group discussion

Brief description

Primary sources created in the next millennium are likely to be word-processed or in electronic form. Those which survive from the last two millennia are largely hand-written: some are beautiful and artistic, some functional and efficient, others rather careless! Who wrote these manuscripts and why, where can we find them and in what form and, most importantly, can we read and understand them? Specialist skills and concepts are introduced, such as palaeography, codicology and problems of dates, all of which are necessary to getting acquainted with the 'manuscript heritage' and learning to read what was written over past centuries. Practical instruction in reading 16th -19th century manuscripts is included, together with guidance on the nature and location of archives and records. A focus on Record Offices and their function involves a group visit and an individual project (completed at Easter). Other assignments relate to medieval books and transcription exercises.

This module crosses boundaries of chronology and interest, linking medieval and modern times and surveying a wide variety of sources. It is particularly useful as preparation for third-year dissertation work and further research of any kind.

Reading Lists

** Recommended Text
M T Clanchy From Memory to Written Record
C J Kitching Archives, the very Essence of our Heritage
G E Dawson & L Kennedy-Skipton Elizabethan Handwriting 1500-1650


This module is at CQFW Level 6