Tools: Transcription sub-group

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Transcription sub-group

What is the transcription sub-group

Assignments and 1:1 support will be tailored to sub-group members according to their needs in terms of transcription skill development and the time they have at their disposal.

Everything is flexible, and can be adjusted just with a simple request to Colin. If you are not enjoying yourself and getting something back, you won't stick with the programme, so it is in Colin's interests to listen to you.

The transcription sub-group will focus on

  • Learning basic C17th legal hand transcription skills
  • Extending existing skills and moving pretty quickly to an intermediate level
  • Getting exposure to a range of manuscript material from the English High Court of Admiralty
  • Getting exposure to a range of other manuscript materials, which we have available (or can quickly image for you)

-- Diverse non-deposition material from the English High Court of Admiralty (bills of lading, protests, invoices, letters...)
-- Port Books
-- Inventories
-- Wills
-- State Papers
-- Chancery Court records

Sub-group membership

Amber Berkeley
Axel Hee Roemer
Deborah Sherlock [and possibly also the glossary sub-group, though also interested in the Silver Ships project]
Nikki Clarke [also glossary sub-group]
Samantha Thompson
Susan Mee [also glossary sub-group]


Amber Berkeley

HCA 13/68 f.284v
HCA 13/68 f.285r

Axel Hee Roemer

HCA 13/68 f.357r - start of deposition of ffrancis Aldwyn, a leather dresser
HCA 13/68 f.357v

Deborah Sherlock

HCA 13/68 f.296v - start of deposition
HCA 13/68 f.297r
HCA 13/68 f.297v
HCA 13/68 f.298r
HCA 13/68 f.298v

Nikki Clarke

HCA 13/68 f.359r
HCA 13/68 f.359v

Susan Mee

HCA 13/68 f.370v
HCA 13/68 f.371r

Samantha Thompson

HCA 13/68 f.358r
HCA 13/68 f.358v - already partially transcribed

Examples of different types of manuscript document


London coastal port book, 1657: E 190/46/2

Specific page: E 190/46/2 f.1r [Compare image with existing transcription]

Bill of lading

A bill of lading from the German ship the Saint George, one of the three big silver carrying ships seized by the English in late 1652, en route from Cadiz to Antwerp (or maybe to Amsterdam)

Volume of bills of lading: HCA 30/225 Saint George

Personal answers

Volume of personal answers, 1650-1652: HCA 13/124

Specific page: HCA 13/124 f.3r [Compare image with existing transcription]


Volume of depositions, 1653-1654 HCA 13/68

Specific page: HCA 13/68 f.1r [Compare image with existing transcription]


Alphabets, Numbers and Dates
University of Cambridge - various alphabets

Simple exercises

Try transcribing this range of simple, medium and hard words


Additional MarineLives palaeographical resources

Avoiding simple transcription errors - a list of words we all make mistakes on when transcribing
Tricky letter combinations

External palaeographical resources

National Archives online tutorial for handwriting, 1500-1800
University of Cambridge English Handwriting, 1500-1700, online course