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Five Centuries of Marriages

Objective

This long-term research project is based on the data-mining of the Llibres d'Esposalles conserved at the Archives of the Barcelona Cathedral, an extraordinary data source comprising 244 books of marriage licenses records. It covers about 550.000 unions from over 250 parishes of the Diocese between 1451 and 1905. Its impeccable conservation is a miracle in a region where parish archives have undergone massive destruction. The books include data on the tax posed on each couple depending on their social class, on an eight-tiered scale. These data allow for research on multiple aspects of demographic research, especially on the very long run, such as: population estimates, marriage dynamics, cycles, and indirect estimations for fertility, migration and survival, as well as socio-economic studies related to social homogamy, social mobility, and transmission of social and occupational position. Being continuous over five centuries, the source constitutes a unique instrument to study the dynamics of population distribution, the expansion of the city of Barcelona and the constitution of its metropolitan area, as well as the chronology and the geography in the constitution of new social classes.
To this end, a digital library and a database, the Barcelona Historical Marriages Database (BHiMaD), are to be created and completed. An ERC-AG will help doing so while undertaking the research analysis of the database in parallel.
The research team, at the U. Autònoma de Barcelona, involves researchers from the Center for Demo-graphic Studies and the Computer Vision Center experts in historical databases and computer-aided recognition of ancient manuscripts. 5CofM will serve the preservation of the original “Llibres d’Esposalles” and unlock the full potential embedded in the collection.

Field of science

  • /natural sciences/computer and information sciences/databases
  • /natural sciences/computer and information sciences/artificial intelligence/computer vision
  • /social sciences/sociology/social problems/migration
  • /social sciences/sociology/demography/fertility
  • /social sciences/sociology/governance/taxation
  • /social sciences/media and communications/library science/archives

Call for proposal

ERC-2010-AdG_20100407
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

ERC-AG - ERC Advanced Grant
Leaflet | Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors, Credit: EC-GISCO, © EuroGeographics for the administrative boundaries

Host institution

UNIVERSIDAD AUTONOMA DE BARCELONA
Address
Calle Campus Universitario Sn Cerdanyola V
08290 Cerdanyola Del Valles
Spain
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 939 800
Principal investigator
Anna Cabré (Prof.)
Administrative Contact
Núria Claver (Ms.)

Beneficiaries (3)

UNIVERSIDAD AUTONOMA DE BARCELONA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 939 800
Address
Calle Campus Universitario Sn Cerdanyola V
08290 Cerdanyola Del Valles
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Principal investigator
Anna Cabré (Prof.)
Administrative Contact
Núria Claver (Ms.)
CENTRO DE ESTUDIOS DEMOGRAFICOS
Spain
EU contribution
€ 503 600
Address
Cerdanyola V Gr Universitat Aut Barcelona Edifici E
08193 Barcelona
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Hermínia Pujol Estragués (Ms.)
CENTRE DE VISIO PER COMPUTADOR
Spain
EU contribution
€ 404 000
Address
Dp Informatica Uab Bellaterra Cerdanyola
08193 Barcelona
Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Gisele Kohatsu (Ms.)