4-5 May 2021 | 3-6pm 
Dorothea McEwan and Claudia Wedepohl

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This German Palaeography class is a reading class. Its aim is to familiarize students with the particularities of Kurrentschrift through a number of different handwritings. A variety of texts will be examined and read: private correspondence, official correspondence of German courts and the Habsburg monarchy, petitions by individuals, replies by authorities, appeals, etc., from the 17th to the 20th centuries. The course will be flexible in as much as it will be possible to present documents from different centuries and handwriting styles in order to suit the needs of the participants. It is therefore helpful to state on the Registration Form which particular research interests the applicant is pursuing. 

Courses fees are £100 (standard) and £75 (student).


- Karin Schneider, Palaeographie und Handschriftenkunde für Germanisten. Eine Einführung, Tübingen (3rd edition) 2014. 

- Kurt Dülfer, Hans Enno Korn, Karsten Uhde Schrifttafeln zur deutschen Paläographie des 16.-20. Jahrhunderts, Marburg (13th edition) 2013. 

- Karl Gladt, Deutsche Schriftfibel. Anleitung und Lektüre der Kurrentschrift des 17.-20. Jahrhunderts, Graz 1976. 

Useful web links: 

- http://www.kurrentschrift.net/ 

- https://gonline.univie.ac.at/erste-schritte-in-kurrent/schriftgeschichte/ 

- https://www.gda.bayern.de/DigitaleSchriftkunde/ 

- Beinert, Wolfgang, Typolexikon.de. Das Lexikon der deutschen Typographie (2001): http://www.typolexikon.de 


Dorothea McEwan

Dorothea McEwan was the first archivist ever employed by of the Warburg Institute, University of London. She was awarded her PhD in History by the University of Vienna, Austria. Currently she is an independent scholar engaged in research of Ethiopian art and intellectual history.

She has published widely, on a range of topics in intellectual and art history, and theology, with an enduring focus on the relationships between Africa and Europe. She is Honorary Fellow of the University of London, and was awarded the Cross of Honour for Science and Art by the President of the Federal Republic of Austria.  She was elected an Associate Fellow of the Ethiopian Academy of Sciences.  

Throughout her academic work she transcribed German manuscripts for books, articles and teaching. As part of her work in the Archive of the Warburg Institute she had to read, transcribe, translate and abstract the vast correspondence archive of Aby Warburg, the founder of the Kulturwissenschaftliche Bibliothek Warburg, in Hamburg, which came to London at the end of 1933 and was called The Warburg Institute. She started the series of classes on German Palaeography in the London International Palaeography Summer School, University of London in 1996 and the German Historical Institute London in 2010.

Claudia Wepepohl

I have graduated in Art History and Italian Literature at the University of Hamburg and joined the staff of the Warburg Institute in 2000. Since 2006 I’m the Institute’s Archivist with responsibility for its archival collections. Next our core collection, the papers of the art and cultural historian Aby Warburg, the Archive holds estates of other formerly affiliated scholars and the Warburg Institute’s administrational files, including a vast collection of correspondences. Subsequently, I specialize in nineteenth and early twentieth-century German paleography.