Bodin Project at the PDL

Bodin Project starts digitizing Jean Bodin for the PDL

A Tufts Innovates seed fund grant will help Yannis Evrigenis and the Bodin Project at Tufts University to digitize Jean Bodin’s Les six livres de la republique. The work, which was published in French, Latin and English and contains copious references to other works, will form the basis of a dynamic variorum edition and will be used as a test-case for identifying text re-use across linguistic boundaries.

Yannis has assembled a team of six undergraduate students and one graduate student to work on the digitization of Bodin’s Latin and French text, with help from Bridget Almas and Lisa Cerrato, as well as other members of the Perseus team.

At the same time, the Tisch Library at Tufts has acquired a 1577 copy of Bodin’s French text and a 1609 copy of the Latin, which it has also digitized through the Internet Archive at the Boston Public Library. The extraction of the Latin text began in June 2013 and was completed in July 2013, while that of the French began in August 2013 and is continuing at present, albeit at a much slower pace, since several of the students have left to study abroad and everyone has returned to a regular schedule.

Two of the students are continuing to work on the project under Evrigenis’s supervision, and in the spring semester, Evrigenis will be devoting a political theory methods seminar to Bodin and the parallel edition of the Six livres that will be open to undergraduates and graduate students who can read Latin. We will continue to work on the French simultaneously, and we expect to have the full French text by the end of the 2013-2014 academic year.

In the meantime, Bridget Almas has begun to test the Latin text against Morpheus, to identify word tokens that are not recognizable by a dictionary and may need to be corrected. We intend to subject the French to the same preliminary test, although the additional difficulty in that case will be to identify a suitable lexicon that will incorporate Renaissance French. We expect that workable editions of all three versions of the text will be available by the middle of the summer of 2014.

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