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Manuscripts found in the Transylvanian Archive of Sibiu/Hermannstadt, Romania

Monica Vlad

This study is dedicated to the manuscripts of the Romanian state archives of Sibiu, Transylvania. The collection has hundreds of meters of manuscripts, some in the form of volumes, others in the form of files. The oldest ones date back to the 12th century and are written in Latin, German, Romanian or Hungarian. Often, the same text is available in two or more of the languages mentioned.

This research work has two obvious goals: to bring to life the valuable, vanishing culture and civilisation of Tansylvania, and to save at least a part of this endangered archive, whose manuscripts are kept under precarious circumstances, many of them being (already) almost unreadable.

The diversity of these handwritings is impressive. They are witnesses to centuries during which Transylvanian culture was a glamorous one among European cultures, due to the outstanding creations of its aristocratic intellectuals.  The result of this research will be a bilingual book, published in German and Romanian. This way, it will be accesible to many readers, giving them an image of a multi-ethnic and multi-confessional space. For example, the monumental study of Adolf Armbruster, Dacoromana Saxonica, which is the only study dealing with the reciprocal relationships between Romanians and Saxons in Transylvania.

The legal history of the Transylvanian Saxons deserves its place among these precious manuscripts, especially as the work of scholar Friedrich Schuler von Libloy shows. Many similar references invite to further study.

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