Monthly Archives: May 2020

Questions Beget Questions: An Example of Digital History Research

In working on the Historical Index of the Medieval Middle East (HIMME), questions often arise of the form whether something or someone mentioned in one source is the same place or person as mentioned with the same name in a different source.  I call this mini-research: usually all it requires is looking up the passage in each source and comparing what it says.  But sometimes it requires more, as I experienced today when I was led on a chase through four medieval sources in three different languages (five if you count modern translations!) by my attempt to determine whether a “chapel of St. John” mentioned by a thirteenth-century Latin pilgrim might be the same as a “church of St. John” mentioned by a twelfth-century Syriac historian-patriarch. Continue reading