Orient-Digital

Orient-Digital is the database of Oriental manuscripts at the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin – Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz.

The collection comprises 43,000 volumes (manuscripts and block-prints) in more than 140 languages and 70 different scripts from Asia, Africa, and Europe. It is one of the most outstanding collections of Oriental manuscripts due to its scale and highly valuable content. You can find more information on the collection of Oriental manuscripts, new acquisitions, activities and publications on the the website of the Oriental Department.

The database provides basic information on all manuscripts, i.e. shelf mark, language, script, number of pages, and catalogue number/cataloguing status. Any inconsistencies between the descriptions of manuscripts are due to the heterogeneous sources used for the datasets (printed catalogues, hand lists, acquisition lists).

At present, the database provides detailed descriptions of more than 6,000 texts in several languages and from different regions, giving supplementary information in both, the original script and a Roman transliteration. About 4,200 texts are completely digitised. The amount of detailed descriptions and digitised objects increases steadily. Among the already digitised collections are precious and rare Arabic manuscripts, all illustrated Islamic manuscripts (among which the Jahangir and Diez albums are the most famous), Hebrew manuscripts, Armenian manuscripts, and many from other regions such as Central, South, and South East Asia.

Orient-Digital has been built up with resources from the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin/Oriental Department in cooperation with the Department of Data-Management of the University of Leipzig, which is continuing to host the database.