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Eighteenth-Century Studies: Online Resources: Scholarly Websites H-P

This is a guide to both free web sites and electronic primary resources we have purchased or subscribe to on/about the long 18th century. Last updated 06-05-2023

Scholarly Websites H-P

Historical Directories (U.K.)

Historical Directories is a digital library of local and trade directories for England and Wales, from 1750 to 1919. It is not comprehensive.

Historical Research in Europe

Attempts "to unite both web-based and printed resources about [Western] European libraries and archives in a single interactive database." Search by keyword, country, any one of 25 pre-defined subject groupings (such as World War II or immigration), subject terms, historical periods, type of archive (such as church or diplomatic), personal or family name, or broad historical topic. Search results lead either to guides to archival materials held in University of Wisconsin's library system (which M.S.U. Libraries may also own; check our online catalog) or to web sites of particular archival institutions.

History of Parliament

The History of Parliament is a research project creating a comprehensive account of parliamentary politics in England, then Britain, from their origins in the thirteenth century. It consists of detailed studies of elections and electoral politics in each constituency, and of closely researched accounts of the lives of everyone who was elected to Parliament in the period, together with surveys drawing out the themes and discoveries of the research and adding information on the operation of Parliament as an institution.

History Online (U.K.)

History On-line is being developed by the British Institute of Historical Research to provide a gateway resource to high quality resources for teaching and learning history in the U.K. Approach is by search or browse. It is browsable by type of history (ecclesiastical, cultural, economic, gender, imperial/commonwealth, social, intellectual, etc.), geographic area, time period, or type of resource (archives, bibliographies, datasets, journals, museums/galleries, organizations/research centres, primary sources, subject gateways). The project works jointly with Humbul Humanities Hub to enhance the history content there.

Huntington Library

The greatest concentration is in the English Renaissance, about 1500 to 1641; other strengths include medieval manuscripts, incunabula (books printed before 1501), maps, travel literature, British and American history and literature, the American Southwest, and the history of science, medicine and technology.

Images of England

From English Heritage and National Monuments Record.  Images of England is a ‘point in time’ photographic library of England’s listed buildings, recorded at the turn of the 21st century.You can view over 300,000 images of England’s built heritage from lamp posts to lavatories, phone boxes to toll booths, mile stones to gravestones, as well as thousands of bridges, historic houses and churches.

Indexes and Guides to Western European Periodicals

American Library Association, ACRL, Western European Studies Section created and maintains this guide. Its purpose is to list print and electronic indexes to European periodicals from the 17th Century to the mid-20th Century. This includes indexes to specific titles, periods, subjects, and geographic areas. In addition, it lists descriptive guides and online web sites that may contain useful information in the absence of an index.

Interactive Historical Atlas of the Disciplines

Related to the history of the disciplinary structure of science.

Intoxicants and Early Modernity: England, 1580-1740

Project explores significance of intoxicants such as tobacco, alcohol, coffee, tea, and opium to "the economic, social, political, material, and culture life of England from 16th-18th centuries."   Showcases 5 themes.  Link to beta version of their database where readers can browse sources.  Collaboration between University of Sheffield and the Victoria and Albert Museum.  PI is Phil Withington, Prof. Univ. of Sheffield.

NOT FREE!  IPA Source contains International Phonetic Alphabet transcriptions and literal translations of opera arias and art song texts to promote comprehension and accurate pronunciation of foreign language texts in art song and opera.  Translations into English from multiple languages.

IPL Online Literary Criticism

The IPL Online Literary Criticism Collection contains 4745 critical and biographical websites about authors and their works that can be browsed by author, by title, or by nationality and literary period.

Irish Studies

This guide is a list of scholarly resources in Irish Studies. Intended primarily for librarians; it may be useful to scholars in this field. It is curated and managed by members of the European Studies Section (ESS) of the Association of College & Research Libraries. For additional resources on Northern Ireland, please see the British and UK Studies guide, in the first section of free web sites in this library guide. Users are free to copy and edit content from this guide for their own purposes.

Jackson Bibliography of Romantic Poetry

The bibliography is based on first-hand examination of copies of existing editions of all English poetry published for the first time between 1770 and 1835, amounting to approximately 23,000 volumes.  The founder of the bibliography, University of Toronto Professor Emeritus Robin Jackson, sought to personally examine and provide descriptions of every book on the site. With the work of examination of copies carried on by other scholars after his death, that goal is 94% complete. The only significant restriction is that "volume" is defined as a book consisting of at least ten pages of original verse; thus the inclusion of anthologies of old and new poetry or of books that mix prose and verse depends on their containing at least ten pages of verse not published before 1770. Verse contained in works of prose fiction such as that of Ann Radcliffe is omitted unless collected as poetry in a separate publication. Following the practice of the British Library, annuals and gift books are excluded as a form of periodical.  NOTE: This is a bibliographical, not a full-text, database.

Jane Austen Society of North America

Dedicated to the enjoyment and appreciation of Jane Austen and her writing.  JASNA is a nonprofit organization staffed by volunteers, with approximately 4,000 members and more than 65 regional groups in the United States and Canada.  Its members, who are of all ages and from diverse walks of life, share an enjoyment of Austen’s fiction and the company of like-minded readers. Students, teachers, members, and visitors are invited to use the resources of this site to learn more about Jane Austen.  The Publications section offers dozens of articles and book reviews on her writing, life, and times, all of which can be searched online.

Jane Austen Fiction Manuscripts

Gathers together in the virtual space of the web some 1100 pages of fiction written in Jane Austen’s own hand. Through digital reunification, it is now possible to access, read, and compare high quality images of original manuscripts whose material forms are scattered around the world in libraries and private collections. Unlike the famous printed novels, all published in a short span between 1811 and 1818, these manuscripts trace Jane Austen’s development as a writer from childhood to the year of her death; that is, from 1787 (aged 11 or 12) to 1817 (aged 41). Not only do they provide a unique visual record of her imagination from her teenage experiments to her last unfinished writings, these pages represent one of the earliest collections of creative writings in the author’s hand to survive for a British novelist.

Jane Austen's Family

Jane Johnson Manuscript Nursery Library, ca. 1740-1759

The Johnson, J. mss. at Indiana University Lilly Library consists of materials devised by Jane (Russell) Johnson primarily for the instruction of her son, George William Johnson. The materials consist of 438 items and are arranged in 24 groups. Included are alphabet cards, religious and secular lesson cards, all hand-made. Some contain colored illustrations and are decorated with multi-colored Dutch paper. The materials, arranged in 24 groups, consist of 438 pieces. Present are six sets of alphabet cards, many with vowel sounds, syllables, words and short lines or verses (which could serve as modern flash cards); three sets of word cards, also with vowel sounds, syllables and lines; two booklets; three sets of lesson cards in verse and anecdotal form on religious and secular topics; five card sets, largely secular and contemporary in nature with some traditional story-verses; and three card sets of religious and moral instruction, along with a set of word chips.

John Johnson Collection: Trades and Professions

The John Johnson Collection is a collection of printed ephemera, formed by John de Monins Johnson (1882-1956). There are in excess of 1million items and c.700 subject headings. The Collection documents Advertising; Art; Authors; Booktrade; Entertainment; Political, Religious, Social and Economic History; Printing; Private Presses; Transport and Travel. Further sections are kept by form: Bill Headings, Bookmarkers, Trade Cards, Valentines, etc. The Collection is retrospective and spans the years 1508 to 1939, with some ephemera of the 1940s and 1950s and a separate collection of post-1960 additions. The Collection is strongest in 19th and early 20th century ephemera, with significant holdings in the 18th century. The original collection was assembled by John de Monins Johnson (1882-1956) who was inspired by his work as a papyrologist in Egypt to rescue Britain's immediate paper heritage. Johnson subsequently worked at the Oxford University Press, becoming Printer to the University from 1925 to 1946. The Collection was transferred to the Bodleian Library from OUP in 1968; since that time both old and modern ephemera have been added to it.

Jonathan Swift: Journal to Stella

Designed with a dual purpose in mind. In the first place, it is a diversion for curious readers and for lovers of Jonathan Swift's more famous works. But it is also intended as a scholarly resource for students and teachers of Swift's writings, and for literary historians of the eighteenth century more generally. The biographies, booklists and chronologies that support the Journal have been prepared to a high academic standard

Jonathan Swift Archives

Collaborative effort between University of Keele, University of Oxford, and Centre for Computing and Humanities at King's College.  Digitized collection of Swift's writings, transcribed from their original print editions. Over 300 texts.  Organization is chronological with browsability by short title, printer/publisher, date.  Full texts of most of his fiction and prose.  You can view multiple editions alongside each other.

Local History internet sites, British perspective]

See Jacquelene Fillmore, "Local History Internet Sites an Update for 2008." Local Historian. 38#3 (2008), pp. 216-223. and Jacquelene Fillmore, "Annotated List of Internet Sites for Local Historians." Local Historian. 37#3 (2007), pp. 193-203.

Lewis Walpole Library, Yale University

The Lewis Walpole Library is a research library for eighteenth-century studies and the prime source for the study of Horace Walpole and Strawberry Hill. Its collections include significant holdings of eighteenth-century British books, manuscripts, prints, drawings, and paintings, as well as important examples of the decorative arts.

Locating London's Past

"Provides an intuitive GIS interface enabling researchers to map and visualize textual and artefactual data relating to 17th and 18th-century London against John Rocque's 1746 map of London and the first accurate modern Ordnance Survey map.  Records of crime, poor relief, taxation, elections, local administration, plague deaths, and archaeological finds can all be searched and mapped on this site."  Brought to you by Centre for Metropolitan History, Institute of Historical Research, Malet St., London.

London Lives 1690 to 1800

London Lives makes available, in a fully digitised and searchable form, a wide range of primary sources about eighteenth-century London, with a particular focus on plebeian Londoners. This resource includes over 240,000 manuscript and printed pages from eight London archives and is supplemented by fifteen datasets created by other projects. It provides access to historical records containing over 3.35 million name instances. Facilities are provided to allow users to link together records relating to the same individual, and to compile biographies of the best documented individuals.

London's Past Online

Is accessible within the Bibliography of  British and Irish History.

London Time Machine

On Sunday the 2nd of September 1666, the Great Fire of London began reducing most of the capital to ashes. Among the devastation and the losses were many maps of the city itself. The Morgan Map of 1682 was the first to show the whole of the City of London after the fire. Produced by William Morgan and his dedicated team of Surveyors and Cartographers it took 6 years to produce.

Mapping the Republic of Letters

This is a digital humanites project from Stanford University's Humanities Center in collaboration with international partners (including Oxford University and CNRS in France) that sheds light on how historical scientific networks contributed to the spread of knowledge from the age of Erasmus through the time of Benjamin Franklin.  Through letters, sociability, and travel people traded information, thought, books, criticism, ideas in the early modern period.

Medical Heritage Library

The Medical Heritage Library is a "digital curation collaborative" between numerous leading medical libraries, including the August C. Long Health Science Library at Columbia University, the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, and the Wellcome Library, to name just a few. These libraries are working together on this remarkable collection that provides insight into the history of medicine in the United States and Great Britain. Through the website's Content tab, visitors can browse hundreds of medical journals, pamphlets, and books dating back to the sixteenth century. Researchers can also conduct a keyword Search in order to find relevant material within this extensive (and still growing) collection.

MEMSlib Online Medieval Resources

From University of Kent, Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies.  Offers links to web sites in manuscript studies (to help with paleography and codicology), medieval history art and architecture (image sourcing sites), and early modern history (best digitized text sites and general reference bibliographies).  Also offers a Forum where people can ask each other questions.

Michigan Early Modern English Materials

Michigan Early Modern English Materials (MEMEM) was compiled by Richard W. Bailey, Jay L. Robinson, James W. Downer, with Patricia V. Lehman. Here are citations collected for the modal verbs and certain other English words for the Early Modern English Dictionary. The work included here was prepared electronically over a period of several years ending in 1975.

MONK Project Metadata Offer New Knowledge

MONK is a digital environment designed to help humanities scholars discover and analyze patterns in the texts they study; the site is developed and hosted by University of Illinois.  The texts you can work on come from some of the major full text projects offered by major university libraries in the U.S., such as EEBO and ECCO (which are not free to all at this time), but also from some free sources: Early American Fiction, DocSouth, and Shakespeare.

Mundus: Gateway to Missionary Collections in the United Kingdom

Web-based guide to more than four hundred collections of overseas missionary materials held in the United Kingdom. These materials, comprising the archives of British missionary societies, collections of personal papers, printed matter, photographs, other visual materials and artefacts, are held in a large number of libraries, record offices and other institutions in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. The Mundus Gateway makes it easier for researchers to locate these collections and obtain sufficient information about their contents to enable effective planning of research visits.

National Archives (U.K.)

The National Archives of England, Wales, and the United Kingdom is one of the largest archival collections in the world, spanning 1000 years of British history, from the 11th century to the present. This government agency was formed in 2003 by bringing together the Public Record Office and the Historical Manuscripts Commission. This web site offers online catalogs of primary source materials and some online texts.

National Archives of Scotland

Main archive for sources of the history of Scotland as a separate kingdom, her role in the British Isles, and the links between Scotland and other countries over the centuries.

National Monuments Record

National Monuments Record (NMR), the public archive of English Heritage with photographs, documents and plans showing architecture, archaeology, listed buildings, aerial photography and social history throughout England.  In advanced search, browse historic photographs (taken 1850s onward) of historic sites and buildings from all periods of English history.  Resources for teachers.  Database of archaeological and architectural records. More.

National Portrait Gallery (U.K.)

The Gallery was founded in 1856 to collect portraits of famous British men and women. Explore 120,000 portraits from the 16th Century to the present day.

National Portrait Gallery (U.S.)

Search more than 80,000 portrait records from the Catalog of American Portraits (CAP). New material is added regularly, and this information is automatically published to the website after it is cataloged and validated.

Newberry Library, Chicago

The Newberry Library collects books, manuscripts, maps, and other printed materials related to the history and culture of Western Europe and the Americas. The collections span many centuries. Since its early years, the Newberry has focused on the humanities, which is a broad category of academic disciplines that includes history, literature, art, foreign languages and cultures, music, philosophy, and religion. Today, the Library's evolving collections include more than 1.5 million books, 5 million manuscript pages, and 500,000 historic maps.

Newton Papers

Isaac Newton, 1642-1727, was a noted chair of mathematics at Cambridge University, which holds many of his papers.  The Cambridge Digital Library project has made what they have available online. 

Newton Project

Created and maintained by an NPO founded in 19998, based at U. of Oxford, contains 95% of Newton's religious writings and 90% of his scientific and mathematical materials, correspondence, and administrative papers from his work as Warden and Master of the Mint.  Some images of archival materials.  Transcriptions of all major biographical material about him and contextual material to assist in understanding his times. He was one of the most important scientists of all time, impacting the fields of physics, math, astronomy, philosophy, theology, history. 

Parks and Gardens U.K.

Website dedicated to historic designed landscapes and will include records of over 7,000 historic gardens in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales as well as articles and features on historical styles and designs.  Browse by period.  Summary, description, references, some images for individual properties.

Parliament and the British Slave Trade, 1600-1807

Online exhibit from the Parliamentary archives explores some of the issues through primary documents and other records.

Parliamentary Archives of the U.K.

Parliamentary Archives of the United Kingdom holds several million historical records relating to Parliament. This Archive web sites offers access to Portcullis, an online catalog describing 3 million items. These include records of the Houses of Lords and Commons: acts of Parliament, committee papers, Hansard, journals, judicial records, peerage claim records, etc. A fire in 1834 burned down the Houses of Parliament; consequently, this archive has no House of Commons records prior to this date, except for manuscript journals and minutes and printed journals of this House. They also do not have records of government departments; these are at the National Archives/Public Records Office.

Perry Casteneda Map Collection

At the University of Texas Austin.  A large map collection with digitized historical maps of Europe.

Phillis Wheatley's Poems on Various Subjects (1773)

The University of South Carolina has acquired a first edition of Phillis Wheatley's Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral (London, 1773), the first book published by an African-American author, and has made it available online and fully searchable. This freely accessible facsimile is provided as both a research tool and a resource for teachers and students worldwide....

Portsmouth and Macclesfield Collections

The Macclesfield Collection documents Sir Isaac Newton's writings and ideas, in letters and manuscripts, on gravitation, calculus, the Principia mathematica, optics, chemistry, comets and other subjects. It consists primarily of holograph letters to and from 17th and 18th century scientists, including Collins, Oughtred, Cavendish, Briggs, Fermat, Oldenburg, Halley, Boyle, Wallis and others. There are also some copy letters and other scientific papers. The Portsmouth Collection documents Sir Isaac Newton's writings and ideas, in letters and manuscripts, on gravitation, calculus, the Principia mathematica, optics, chemistry, comets and other subjects. Although widely known for his discovery of universal gravitation, Newton's scientific and intellectual interests were vast, and this range of creative thinking is reflected in these papers.

Proceedings of the Old Bailey London 1674-1834

"This is a fully searchable online edition of the largest body of texts detailing the lives of non-elite people ever published, containing accounts of over 100,000 criminal trials held at London's central criminal court." Also includes historical background information and a bibliography (contains citations on: publishing history; associated records; crime, criminal justice and punishment; Old Bailey Courthouse; London and hinterlands; community histories; gender and the proceedings; and general and useful web sites.)