Links - Primary documents

British History Online
A digital library containing some of the core printed primary and secondary sources for the medieval and modern history of the British Isles.
Catholic Herald archive
The CATHOLIC HERALD, one of the country's leading Roman Catholic weekly newspapers, has just launched an online archive of all of its issues from 1935 to 2011 inclusive (the title actually commenced in 1888 but was sold to New Catholic Herald Ltd in 1934). Browsing and searching are entirely free. The results can be viewed as OCRd text (inevitably of variable quality) or as page images (which can be zoomed).
Digital sources: English Monastic Archives
BACKGROUND The English Monastic Archives tripartite Database comprises a systematic guide to one of the largest and most important sets of documents anywhere in the pre-modern world. It enables scholars to conduct many different sorts of searches and should inaugurate a renaissance of research on English monasteries and the many other related topics in social, economic, cultural and religious history. The database is designed to be a research tool: it is a guide to the types and current locations of documents generated by medieval English monasteries, but not, as a rule, to the information contained within those documents. The project was made possible primarily by two very substantial grants from the Arts and Humanities Research Board (AHRB, now the AHRC), supplemented by indispensable grants from UCL, and the British Academy. A grant from the Marc Fitch Fund led to a considerable improvement of the ‘Religious Houses’ and ‘Properties’ databases. THE TWO DATABASES The database to which many users of this site will have grown accustomed has been replaced by a new one, Database II, which includes much new material added since the formal end of the project by project members who continue to work pro bono. Database II is less attractive visually than its predecessor and the range of combination searches available is more restricted. This is because software for transferring new data directly from a stand-alone database onto the internet is still in development. The relative inelegance of Database II disguises the fact that its existence results from a technical breakthrough (by project consultant Stefan Kueppers) which has taken much time and expertise to achieve. In addition to the databases, a three volume book and a series of articles have come out of the project.
Early Christian Ecclesiastical Settlement in Ireland 5th to 12th Centuries
Feminine versions of the rule of St Benedict in Latin, English, German, French from the Medieval and Early Modern Periods
Historical Index of Religious Missions
Holy Women of Byzantium
This electronic version of the first volume of a series of Byzantine saints' lives in English Translation. The resource begins with an introduction on the genre of the 'vita' (the life of a saint) in general, and on the lives of female Byzantine saints in particular. Chapters on the lives on ten saints then follow. The saints chosen are from a variety of backgrounds and ways of life: there are sections on nuns disguised as monks, on solitaries, cenobitics, married women saints, and one on Empress Theodora. This solid and scholarly resource provides full reference details.
Institute of Our Lady of Mercy Archives (UK)
A selection of photographs on Flickr from the Institute of Our Lady of Mercy Archives (UK).
Mary Ward’s Loreto Sisters
Includes information on Mary Ward, Teresa Ward and A Painted Life
Monasticon is a repertory of profiles of women's religious communities that existed between 400-1600 CE.
Schoenberg Database of Manuscripts
The Catholic Encyclopaedia (1907)
The Irish Sketch-book by William Makepeace Thackeray
University of Wisconsin: Digital Collections
Lina Eckenstein, Women under monasticism: chapters on saint-lore and convent life between A.D. 500 and A.D. 1500 (1896)