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The Thorvaldsens Museum Archives

How to Use the Archives

The Contents of the Archives

This site is a research and documentation centre on Bertel Thorvaldsen and his art. Published here you will find comprehensive written source material on the sculptor and his art.
The bulk of the material is transcripts of all written primary sources left by Thorvaldsen, and kept today at his museum. More than half of the documents are letters to, from and about the sculptor. They were uncovered in Rome just after the death of Thorvaldsen; see History of the Archives for more on this.
Apart from the material found in Rome, the Archives holds other documents with different provenances: Since its founding the Thorvaldsens Museum has strived to expand the amount of written source material on the artist through acquisitions and donations. Throughout the years the museum has also acquired copies or transcripts of other written sources in both Danish and foreign archives.

All Sorts of Documents

The Archives hold many other types of documents than letters. The term “document” is here defined as a contemporary, handwritten or printed source that contains information on the activities of Thorvaldsen. Thus the term covers many different types of written primary sources from the time of the artist. Apart from letters, there are also poems, articles on Thorvaldsen, workshop accounts, lists of art works, notes, travel permits, recommendations, dedications in books, memos, and many other types of written sources on the life and works of Thorvaldsen.
The Archives can potentially publish any form of written source material relating to the sculptor.
In the commentaries to each document its kind is clearly stated.

Researching the Material

The source material is the foundation of a large research project 2017-21 the aim of which is to expand our knowledge on Thorvaldsen’s works in their context. The results of the project are published here continuously as open resources, consisting mainly of detailed commentaries to the documents in the Archives, and of a large fund of related articles. The commentaries are linked to each document, stating – within the distance of a click – to which work of art, person, event, place etc. the document refers. The related articles are elaborating and synthesizing topics occurring in many documents. The articles establish a background for the source material for instance by unfolding particular characteristics of Thorvaldsen’s production, deepening the understanding of his works in light of contemporary artistic, philosophical or political currents, and/or rendering visible the importance of his network of friends and colleagues.

Principal Editors 2013-2021

Ernst Jonas Bencard, mag.art., art historian, project manager, until 2019
Karen Benedicte Busk-Jepsen, mag.art., art historian
Nanna Kronberg Frederiksen, mag.art., art historian
Kira Kofoed, mag.art., art historian
Lejla Mrgan, cand.mag., art historian, maternity cover 2015, and 2016-2017

Student Assistants

Sandra Tøttrup Jensen, sociology of religion (2013-2015)
Lejla Mrgan, art history (2014-2015)
Thor Huus, art history (2015-2017)
Hans Erik Havsteen, history (2015-2017)
Mads Aakjær Reinert, classical philology (2017-2019)
Bernadette Alster, art history (2017-2018)

A Note on Translations to our Users not Reading Danish

As mentioned the Archives is a work-in-progress site until 2017. As you probably will perceive most of the commentaries to the documents are written in Danish. We are very sorry for the inconvenience this will cause you. However, we have done a lot – and will do more – to overcome this communication obstacle:

Firstly, the Archives exists in two parallel frameworks – a Danish and an English. The English framework has been completely translated in order to ease navigation in the Archives for all non Danish reading users.

Secondly, the most important texts will be translated into English during the process of researching the documents – that is until 2017. So texts appearing in Danish at one time may have been translated if you visit the Archives later.
If you need help in deciphering any Danish gibberish you are most welcome to contact us.

Thirdly, we recommend – with some degree of reservation – that you apply one of the many automatic translation services provided freely by different internet operators. Google translate is an example, although the quality of the translation could easily be improved.
Regarding detailed commentaries on specific documents we try to keep them short, factual and objective (as far as that is possible). Due to this character of the commentaries, you may – in most instances – get a not too inaccurate impression of the content by using an automatic translation.
However, when translating longer texts as for instance the Related Articles in the Archives Google translate or other automats are still not up to par.

Copyright and Quotations

For information regarding copyright for the texts in the Archives and conditions governing quotations, please see Copyright.

Overall Structure and Navigation

The Archives is divided into six main categories:
About, Documents, Chronology, Persons, Subjects, and Related Articles.
About contains practical information such as How to Use the Archives, Editorial Principles, a list of Contributors to the project during the years and more. The next four categories constitute the central, source-based parts of the Archives, while Related Articles examine the sources in many different ways.
The six main categories are always shown at the top of each page, enabling you quickly to find your bearings and to navigate wherever you want to go. A click on a main category will bring related sub-categories into view.
The ocherous coloured marking of a category or sub-category indicates that you are in this category.

The main categories of the Archives are knitted together by means of tens of thousands of links that can quickly take you to supplementary information in other categories.

If you would like a more detailed explanation of the considerations behind the first structuring of the Archives in 2006, you can read more in the article New Order (in Danish) and also below under The Design of the Archives.

The Front Page

The front page presents the Archives on a silver platter. Here you are served shorts cuts to selected pages in a visually appealing manner, linking you up with small pieces of the vast contents directly without having the trouble to search. The front page is designed as a grid of boxes – each representing one of the main categories of the Archives or content bridging one or many categories.

The front page changes each time you update the page thereby constantly opening up new paths into the Archives – press F5.

Searching the Archives

From the front page you can search freely in all of the Archives. The simple free text search will produce hits in all of the main categories simultaneously. The search result will be shown at the advanced search page. Search hits for the category Documents will appear here, while links will take you to search hits in the other main categories of the Archives.

The Advanced Search Page

At the advanced search page you can add different search criteria, e.g. you can limit your search in time, or you can choose to search within documents from one sender only, or look for specific works by Thorvaldsen etc. The advanced search will only produce hits in Documents, the primary category of the Archives.

The advanced search functions are made as self-explanatory and user-friendly as possible. However, if you need help, or wish to see some of the more advanced search possibilities demonstrated, please read Search Tips below.
A direct link to these is also to be found at the top right in all search pages.

If you choose not to add any criteria to your search, it will produce the same results as a free text search from the front page.

Furthermore, there is a separate search field in every main category of the Archives.

About the Archives

In addition to the present How to Use the Archives, the main category About also contains Editorial Principles, an article on the History of the Archives, a list of Contributors, Acknowledgements, a page concerning Copyright, and a Contact page providing information on how to send comments or corrections to the Archives.


Under the category of Documents you can either search or browse through the source material: Either choose the front page to search for something specific, or browse the documents by choosing the page entitled The Documents Year by Year.
In both instances, and everywhere else in the Archives, documents are initially represented as square boxes containing a date link to the individual document page and the basic information relating to the document (sender, recipient and part of the document’s abstract).

The Individual Document – Layout of Data

Below follows an explanation to each of the fields shown at the individual document page.

The Transcript of the Source Text

The transcript is presented at the centre of the page on a pale grey background and with a different typography from the rest of the Archives. In this way there is a clear distinction between the original source document and the textual framework added by the editors.

If the text of the document has been translated, the translation can be obtained by clicking on [Translation] at the top right. To return to the original text, click again on [Translation].


All source documents at the Thorvaldsens Museum have been scanned. These facsimiles have been added to the transcripts, and will pop up by clicking the button See the Original at the upper left above the transcript.
The facsimile is presented in 300 dpi resolution, enabling close up studies, or controlling the accuracy of the transcript in detail. The Archives will happily receive any corrections, see Contact.
You can download the facsimile to your own computer for study purposes. If you wish to publish a reproduction of an original document – on the internet or in printed form – please contact the Archives. See also Copyright.


In the document text, passages commented on are marked in blue. A click on the marked text will show the commentary on the passage on the right hand side of the page. The commentary can be hidden again by clicking on the small cross in the top right corner.

The commentaries aim to treat the document text in a sober, objective manner. If a more interpretative analysis of a subject covering many documents has been written by the editors, you will by referred to a Related Article on the matter.
This distinction is a basic principle for the Archives: The commentaries will have a relatively more sober, descriptive character, while the Related Articles may have a more interpretative character.

Sender, Recipient, and Date

The sender, date and recipient of the document are shown above the source text. Each of these fields is followed by a small blue cross [+]. A click on this will open information on respectively the place where the document was produced, information on the sender (for instance information on a seal or address), the basis for the dating and information on the place where the document was received as well as information on the recipient (for instance the address on a letter). This information can be removed by clicking again on the blue cross.


Immediately below the information on the sender, recipient and date of the document, there follows a brief abstract of the contents, providing the user with a quick overview.

General Comment

Beneath the actual document text follows the General Comment, in which for instance ambiguities in the contents are clarified or the document is placed in its context.

Archival Reference

Archival Reference indicates where the original document is to be found. If no name of an archive is indicated, the reference is to Thorvaldsens Museum.

Document Type

Document Type applies exclusively to documents from Thorvaldsen. There are four types:
  • Document, autograph – document written by Thorvaldsen
  • Draft by Thorvaldsen – draft written by Thorvaldsen
  • Document, by amanuensis – document written for Thorvaldsen by an amanuensis, a kind of secretary
  • Draft by amanuensis – draft written for Thorvaldsen by an amanuensis


Any amanuensis, i.e. a kind of secretary, see Document Type above, will appear in the field bearing that name. If the amanuensis in question requires further comments, these will be shown in the field Comment on amanuensis.
See also the related article on Thorvaldsen’s amanuenses.


Under the heading of Thiele there are references to Thorvaldsen’s first biographer Just Mathias Thiele’s volumes on the artist. The separate references to Thiele’s works are given because of their status as primary sources in the Thorvaldsen literature. Thiele was the first person systematically to examine and structure Thorvaldsen’s works and posthumous documents.

Thiele’s four volume biography consist of:
  • Thiele I = Thorvaldsens Ungdomshistorie. 1770-1804 (History of Thorvaldsen’s Youth. 1770-1804), Copenhagen 1851
  • Thiele II = Thorvaldsen i Rom. 1805-1819 (Thorvaldsen in Rome. 1805-1819), Copenhagen 1852
  • Thiele III = Thorvaldsen i Rom. 1819-1839 (Thorvaldsen in Rome. 1819-1838), Copenhagen 1854
  • Thiele IV = Thorvaldsen i Kiøbenhavn. 1839-1844 (Thorvaldsen in Copenhagen. 1839-1844), Copenhagen 1856

These are referred to along the following lines:
Thiele I, p. 45; Thiele IV, p. 56-59.

Thiele’s earlier work, also in four volumes, Den danske Billedhugger Bertel Thorvaldsen og hans Værker (The Danish Sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen and his Works), 1831, 1832, 1848 and 1850 is referred to as for instance:
Thiele 1831, p. 76; Thiele 1848, p. 11.
See a comprehensive list of Thiele’s writing on Thorvaldsen here.

Other References

Other References lists references to the document found in other sources or in literature other than Thiele’s standard works.


The subjects touched upon in the document are listed under the heading of Subjects. Each subject links to the main category of Subjects, where you will find a list of all document attached to a specific subject.


Furthest down on the page presenting each document you will find small photographs of works on Thorvaldsens Museum mentioned in the document text. The photographs represent both works by Thorvaldsen and works by other artists in the museum collection. Each photograph links to a larger image and basic catalogue information on the specific work.

Regarding the works of Thorvaldsen a reference work at the museum is often shown, instead of the specific version of the work mentioned in the document. If for instance Thorvaldsen’s bronze statue of Johann Gutenberg in Mainz is referred to in the document text, the small photograph will render the plaster original at the Thorvaldsens Museum as the reference work.

Missing Fields

If there is no information relating to the above-mentioned fields, then they are not shown.

Arrangement of the Documents

The documents are arranged chronologically, and it is possible to move backwards and forwards between them by clicking on the arrows at the top right of the document page. The numbering – e.g. No. 34 of 8031 – indicates the position of the document in the general chronologically arranged main body of documents. This number is not to be understood as an archival term as the place of the individual document in the chronological sequence can be changed when further documents are uploaded to the Archives.
The archival whereabouts of the document is indicated under the heading of Archival Reference, see above.


In the main category Chronology a synchronological table is shown. The table is divided into four columns: Date, Events, Whereabouts and Works and thus documents what happened, where Thorvaldsen was located, and what he produced in every single year in his life and later.
The columns Events, Whereabouts and Works can be studied at the same time – synchronologically – or separately, allowing two, three or all four columns to be shown at a time.

The Chronology = Facts

The information in the Chronology is derived from the Documents in the Archives, and other primary sources. Thus it is an empirically based table of facts on all possible occurrences in the life of Thorvaldsen.
A click on the individual dates on the far left of the table will show the sources constituting the empirical basis for the chronological entry. Thus the Chronology presents both a comprehensive survey of the basic Thorvaldsen knowledge, and its roots. In this way the user will be able to check whether a given piece of information is founded on certainties, or whether it stems from not so reliable sources.

The purpose of the chronological table of facts is not just to present the basic information on Thorvaldsen in an easily accessible manner, but also to make this knowledge foundation transparent to the user.
In this manner the Chronology reflects a central purpose of the whole Archives.

Work in Progress

NB many places in the individual chronological entries you will find no sources listed, or reference is made to only one printed source – often the works by Thiele on Thorvaldsen.
These shortcomings are due to the fact that not all documents in the Archives have been fully studied. However, each entry in the Chronology will eventually be furnished with references to primary sources.

Information deriving from Thiele’s four-volume biography on Thorvaldsen, 1851-56, is regarded as a primary source. Thiele knew the sculptor from his first visits to Rome in the 1820ies, and everything he reports could have been obtained from the sculptor himself – straight from the horse’s mouth. However, Thiele did not know the same source material as is accessible today. His information will be supplied and corrected if/when new sources will be examined.

After 1844

The chronology is closely linked to Thorvaldsen’s life and oeuvre, but years after his death in 1844 are nevertheless included for the sake of Thorvaldsen related events or works that have taken place or been executed during this period.

Navigation in the Chronology

The Chronology is pre-set to show one year at a time. You can click on the year wanted, or you can scroll through the years.
It is also possible to see a row of years simultaneously by clicking Time-Limits, and then choose an interval of years.
If you wish to see illustrations of the works Thorvaldsen produced in a given year, press the button see works, and small photographs will appear. Presently all the sculptural works of Thorvaldsen are included in the Chronology, while only a limited selection of his drawings is shown.


The main category Persons is an index of names including all persons and institutions to which reference is made in the source material of the Archives.
The index is arranged alphabetically. The biographies are primarily focused on the artistic, professional and/or personal relationship between Thorvaldsen and the person in question. This means that information on achievements and careers are only included insofar as they are relevant to our knowledge of Thorvaldsen or if it is thought to be difficult to find the information elsewhere.
For further information on generally known figures, you are kindly referred to biographical encyclopaedias. In the case of Danes, a standard reference would be Dansk Biografisk Leksikon, both in its 2nd edition and 3rd edition.

Factbox and Standard of Names

The factbox on the right hand side of the biography contains basic information on the person’s name, dates, nationality and profession.
In cases where the person’s name varies, both the customary and the full name are written along with possible variations of the spelling.
As the standard for spelling artists’ names, we conform to ULAN, the Union List of Artist Names apart from Danish artists, where we follow the spelling in Weilbachs Kunstnerleksikon. For Danes who are not artists, we use the spelling in Dansk Biografisk Leksikon. For other persons we conform to the name used by the most authoritative sources.
If documents in the Archives causes us to deviate from these norms, it will be stated clearly in the biography.

In order to make the search for the professions of persons in the biographies as complete as possible, the factbox only contains general terms for people’s professions – for instance painter instead of miniaturist. However, the more detailed biography compensates for this generalisation by specifying the person’s profession where this is considered necessary.


The main category Subjects is the subject index for the Archives. Under each separate subject word in the index it is indicated how many documents in the Archives relate to the subject. It can also be seen whether a related article is linked to the subject word.
A more detailed overview of the documents linked to the subject word emerges by clicking on the actual subject word. The overview shows the sender, recipient and abstract for each document and also possible links to related subject words and related articles.

Related Articles

The main category Related Articles are primarily concerned with subjects pertinent to several documents. The articles are different in character: Some are surveys or practical lists – i.e. Thorvaldsen’s Honorary Titles – some summarize the sources for a specific commission – i.e. Jason and the Hope commission – others present a particular subject in the Thorvaldsen sphere – i.e. The Hair of Thorvaldsen – while other may introduce a freer interpretation of a given phenomenon in the sources.
Consequently, the related articles are not of a strictly systematic nature. They aim to create an overview of subjects considered to be of particular interest or importance. Their purpose is to contextualize the individual document in a broader setting – or in other words to elevate the micro history of the document to a more macro historical level.
The related articles treat the material more freely and interpretatively than the more sober, objective commentaries in the individual documents.

Printing from the Archives

If you wish to print a document with its associated commentaries, you click on Print at the bottom right of the individual document page. On the other hand, if you only want the document text and the most basic information relating to it, i.e. the document as it appears on the screen, you should merely click on the browser print button.
The same distinction can be made in an individual related article – if you click on Print at the top right of the page, the article with associated commentaries will be printed. If you click on the browser’s print button, the article is printed as seen on the screen.
On certain pages there is no special need for a print function, and you should therefore use the browser print button.

References to Literature

No complete bibliography has been compiled of the literature used in the Archives. Instead, literature is listed in connection with the document or article in relation to which it is quoted.
This choice is made because a complete list of literature quoted would be far too long and offer contents of a highly disparate nature.
The library in the Thorvaldsens Museum constitutes the main source of the literature used, but apart from this there are countless references to other literature that is only indirectly concerned with Thorvaldsen. Further, there are references to unpublished material in other archives and to other homepages and databases on the Internet. The relevant references are specifically listed under the primary sources, and always accessible in a clear and usable form.

Unfinished Material

The Archives are full of links between documents, related articles, chronological entries and individual biographies. In certain cases, these links can lead to a document on which the commentary is not yet complete or to an unfinished related article.
These incomplete elements occur due to the fact that the processing of the source material in the Archives is an on-going project. During the work, it will for practical reasons be more efficient to establish these work-in-progress links to, for instance, a document in its “raw state” without commentary rather than no link at all. The Thorvaldsens Museum apologizes for these temporary deficiencies, and hope that this will merely further the desire to return to Archives again and again.

Links to Works at the Thorvaldsens Museum

Everywhere in the Archives you may run into a type of number like A233. These numbers are the inventory numbers of the Thorvaldsens Museum, and succeed a title of a work of art. The numbers link to a separate window providing basic information on the specific work. From here there is a further link to the digital catalogue of the museum collections. In this manner you will always have the catalogue reference to a given work at hand, be it a work by Thorvaldsen or any other artist represented in the museum collection.

The Design of the Archives

The layout of the Archives has been designed as clearly and simply as possible for two reasons: In a stylistic sense, the Archives can be placed in the wake of the cleansed form of Neo-Classicism of which Thorvaldsen was an exponent. In a practical sense, disturbing colours and elements have deliberately been avoided in order to make the site as comprehensible as possible.
Read more on the underlying principles for the initial structuring the Archives in 2006 in the article New Order (in Danish).

The Use of Images

Apart from the scans of the original document images will rarely be shown on the page of each individual transcription. As a written primary source we have chosen to present the document text as soberly as possible both as regards to the lack of illustrations and the factual character of the commentaries.
However, at the bottom of each document page you will find small images of the works mentioned in the document text.

In the biographies and the related articles images are applied freely.

Explanation of Coloured Links

The three primary colours are used for internal links throughout the Archives. They are chosen in the first instance from Gottlieb Bindesbøll’s palette for the Thorvaldsens Museum and secondly on the basis of practical considerations required by a digital reproduction on screen.

Ochre Links for General Navigation

The signature colour of the museum building, ochre, is used for links directing you to overall pages within the Archives. Within the six main categories at the top of each page, the marking indicates in what category of the Archives you are. Ochre is also used to mark functions such as print and resetting of search fields and also to indicate links leading to other overarching parts of the Archives. For instance, for showing documents from 1798, chronologies from the whole of 1803 or sub-categories within the category About the Archives.

Blue Links for Documents

Blue date links lead to documents in the primary main category of the Archives. Within the individual documents other blue links refer to commentaries – either in the form of a marked text or a [+].

Red Links for Other Main Categories

Red links lead to further information from the following categories in the Archives: Chronology, Persons, Subjects and Related Articles.

Grey Links for External References

Grey links lead to materials on homepages outside the Archives.

Dependent on browser settings, links already visited will either turn grey or retain their colour. In either case, they will still be active links. See more on this under browser settings below.

Recommended Settings

Recommended Browser Settings

If you want used links to change colour, you must set your browser to remember pages visited for at least one day. If you do not want this, the browser is set to 0 days. In most browsers, this is done by going to Functions and (Internet-) Preferences and then setting the time frame for the browser’s memory.

Search Tips

In General

Generally speaking there are two ways of searching the material in the Archives: Either a simple free text search in all of the Archives, or an advanced search which will only produce hits in the main category Documents.

Free Text Search

The easiest way to find something is to write a search word in the search field at the front page of the Archives. In the vast majority of cases this will be fully sufficient to obtain a satisfactory result.
This type of search will produce hits in all categories of the Archives – Documents, Chronology, Persons, Subjects and Related Articles. The search result is shown at the page for the advanced search with links to search hits in all categories.

There are free text search fields in each category of the Archives. A search here will only produce hits in the given category.

In all categories the free text search can be extended with wildcard searches using *. Here follows search examples in all of the categories of the Archives.

Search Result with link to search example
thetis All places where Thetis appears
thetis gotskalk All places where both Thetis and Gotskalk appear
römisch* All places where words beginning with römisch appear
“thorvaldsen asks” All places where the phrase Thorvaldsen asks appears
a822 All places where the Thorvaldsens Museum inventory number A822 (= Jason with the Golden Fleece) appears

There is no distinction between upper-case and lower-case letters.

Search Results with Marked Search Words

Simple searches for words such as thetis, gotskalk or commission in the search field will, when you click on to the search result, provide pale blue markings of the search word on the individual pages.
If the search word is in the comments to a document, the relevant place in the document text will be marked, so it can be seen in which comment the search word appears. If the search word is located in hidden texts on, for instance, the place from which a document was sent and the basis for dating, the small crosses at these fields will be marked in pale blue.

Search marking is shown exclusively on whole words and thus cannot be used in combination with *.

Removal of Search Marking

If you wish to remove the pale blue marking of the search result, this can be done by removing the last part of the URL address in the browser’s navigation line, i.e. from: ?highlight=…, after which you click on “enter”. The page will now be updated and the search marking will disappear.
Alternatively, you can click on to the next document – or back to the previous one – by using the circular arrow keys at the top right of the document page. You then click back to the desired document, and the search marking has now disappeared.

Advanced Search in Documents

Apart from the free text search there are a number of advanced search possibilities at this page.
The advanced search possibilities are made as self-explanatory as possible.

You can for instance limit the search by marking check boxes and/or use the pull down menus focusing on a period, a sender or a language, or quickly find something quite specific by combining several searches at the same time.
Below you will find examples of search possibilities.

Search for Works Only

If you click the field Search for Works only the search result will only produce hits in documents mentioning one of Thorvaldsen’s works or another work on the Thorvaldsens Museum.
NB This search will only produce hits, if a given work has actively been linked to a given document. As many documents have not been thoroughly examined yet, it is not certain that this kind of search will render a truthful result of the material in the Archives.

The search result will present small photographs of the works matching the search criteria, so you will quickly be able to see if need to adjust your search.

Search Result with link to search example
venus All documents, to which works are linked whose title include the word venus.
venus mars All documents, to which works are linked whose title include the words venus and mars.
lyre All documents, to which works are linked whose title include the word lyre.
a212 All documents, in which Thorvaldsens Museum inventory number A212 is mentioned.


All searches can be limited by a period searching, or the Time-Limit field can be used alone.
Dates are written as: day.month.year divided by full stop and without a space between or superfluous noughts, for instance: 31.12.1799 or 1.5.1805. It is also sufficient merely to give the month.year or the year alone, as for instance: 10.1824 or 1835.

Search Result with link to search example
From: 1843 All documents from and 1843 and thereafter
To: 1801 All documents up to and including 1801
From: 1797
To: 1800
All documents from the period 1797-1800
From: 1.8.1833
To: 5.1835
All documents from the period 1 of August 1833 to the end of May 1835

Select from Index

Search Result with link to search example
Sender: Thorvaldsen, Gotskalk All documents from Gotskalk Thorvaldsen
Language of document: English All documents in English
Recipient: Abildgaard, Nicolai
Document type: Document, autograph
All autograph documents from Thorvaldsen to Nicolai Abildgaard
Sender: Thorvaldsen, Bertel
Language of document: Italian
All documents sent by Thorvaldsen in Italian
Recipient: Thorvaldsen, Bertel
Sender’s nationality: British
All documents sent to Thorvaldsen from Brits

Limit or Combine Your Keyword Search

NB The search field should always be filled in when using the check boxes.

Search Result with link to search example
præst with Occupation checked All documents in which clergymen (præster) appear as senders or recipients
præst with Sender and Occupation checked All documents in which clergymen (præster) appear as senders
stuttgart with Sender’s location checked All documents sent from Stuttgart
münchen with Sender’s location and Recipient’s location checked All documents sent from and received in München / Munich
If you search as in the three examples below both with several checked boxes and several words at a time, the words in the search field must be separated by “OR”.
malta OR m1 with Sender’s location and Archival reference checked All documents sent from Malta and placed in the physical archives under m1
maler OR rom with Occupation and Recipient’s location checked All documents sent by or to a painter (maler) and received in Rome
rom OR abild* with Sender’s location and Recipient checked All documents sent from Rome and received by persons whose names start with abild

Combined Searches

The various types of searches can also be combined in numerous ways in order to limit the search further. Please note that the search field must always be filled in when using the check boxes.

Search Result with link to search example
Search field: kunstakad*
Time-Limit: From: 1793 To: 1820
Recipient: Thorvaldsen, Bertel from index
All documents to Thorvaldsen in the period 1793-1820 containing a word starting with kunstakad
Search field: arkæolog
Recipient: Thorvaldsen, Bertel from index
Sender’s nationality: Danish
Check box: Occupation
All documents from Danish archaeologists (arkæologer) to Thorvaldsen
Search field: københavn
Time-Limit: From: 1838 To: 1844
Sender: Thorvaldsen, Bertel from index
Check box: Sender’s location
All documents from Thorvaldsen sent from Copenhagen (København) between 1838 and 1844

Missing Marking of Search Word

When using the free text search field on the front page of the Archives the search word are most often marked in pale blue. This does not always happen when using the advanced searches.
If – for instance – you fill in the search field for a profession, a nationality, a life span or a name (for instance sculptor, Icelandic, 1743-1809 or Abraham) it may happen that no search word has been marked on a page, even though the search produced a result.
This apparent confusion occurs because these four qualities through the biography are linked to the person who appears as the sender or recipient of the document. The search word therefore does not appear directly in the document, but in the information linked to the person or to the relevant biography. This structure enables more advanced searches in nationality and profession as shown in the examples above.

Saving the Search Result

If you wish to save your search results, you are recommended to copy and save the URL address in the browser’s navigation line and then insert it when you wish to visit these results again. If fresh material matching the search criteria has been added to the Archives in the meantime, this will automatically be shown when re-inserting the URL.

Translation by Glyn Jones (revised)

Last updated 13.06.2023