Learn the art of palaeography, the reading of old handwriting, at Derbyshire Record Office.
Using archives from the record office’s collections, these five practical sessions, designed for beginners, will introduce the skills needed to read old hand writing from 16th to 18th centuries.
You will learn how to read different types of handwriting, including the most commonly used hand – Secretary Hand, and also Italic and Cursive styles and discover how to date documents and recognise the standard form particular to certain documents.
The first session, the introduction, will cover the practical skills of palaeography including spelling, transcribing, letter forms, dating documents, and abbreviations and more. Over the following four sessions we will take you through a different style of hand, working through copies of records held at the record office, the original documents will be on show for you to see. As Secretary Hand is the most common style used for formal documents we’ll have two sessions on this but each session will feature different types of sources.
We will work through a selection of the most popular types of documents such as parish registers, probate records, manorial and estate records.
Each participant will receive a course pack to take away containing examples of alphabets, common abbreviations, hints and tips on successful transcribing. This will set participants on the right track for successful transcribing throughout the course and beyond.
Refreshments are not included but participants are welcome to use the drinks machine in our break room (all hot drinks cost £1).
We are offering all five sessions at the reduced price of £45 or £10 for each individual session. In order to benefit fully we recommend participants attend all five sessions.
Tuesday 27th October: Introduction – practical skills and where to start
Tuesday 3rd November: Secretary Hand (part 1)
Tuesday 10th November: Secretary Hand (part 2)
Tuesday 17th November: Cursive Hand
Tuesday 24th November: Italic Hand
All sessions run 2.00pm-4.00pm
You can sign up online on the palaeography course’s Eventbrite page.
This course coincides with Explore Your Archive week, co-ordinated by The National Archives.