Guide to Consultation
With the HTML representation of the digital
archive, The Years of the Cupola, over nearly
1,800,000 files with
responses to queries regarding the corpus of documents can be consulted
ordinary internet browser. This rich indexing structure leads to the
the digital archive, the entries for single documents, fully
The available functions are designed to render consultation of
the archive simple and intuitive. The following explanation of the
organization of these functions may however prove helpful:
Every page of the textual archive, at every search level, has THREE
FUNCTION BARS, offering functions of different nature.
1. The top horizontal function bar displays the
types of search that can be activated by buttons. It is always present
and active; the active function is
highlighted in white.
- Sources: the archival
collocation of the documents
- Dates: dates of the documents
or dates cited in the documents
- Indices: by name, place and
institution; search functions by item string or by single words
- Topics 1: guided research by
- Topics 2: supplementary research
by single words in subject subcategory specifications
- Reference: search with reference tools: document
summaries, hypertext relations,
cross-references to other records, bibliography
- Texts: direct interrogation of words in original
2. The vertical navigation bar at left shows the search
options available as the user navigates within the logical structure of
archive. The options are context-sensitive, according to the search
already selected and the interrogation level reached. There may be
multiple levels, appearing in descending order
from the general to the particular.
Example, in date
date type – year
– month – day
- The active position is
highlighted in red.
- As the left bar can
extend vertically, it may be necessary to scroll down to visualize all
- Options are given only
when responses to them are currently available in the database.
- The options at the most
detailed level may be either segments of alphabetical or numerical
else (in guided research in the Topics category) relatively limited
categories, each of which gives access, on the subsequent level, to
all the relevant entries with their free-text specifications according
terminology of the documents.
3. The lower horizontal help bar at the bottom of every
page activates several basic functions which are always available, as
other functions useful for scrolling the records of the archive, active
when a document has been called up.
- Stable functions
- Top – moves back to the start
of the page.
- Return – returns to the
page viewed previously (the browser’s return can also be used).
- Help – opens this guide.
- Contact – access to page with e-mail addresses
to contact us.
- Home – returns to home page of the project; from
there a click on the image of the cupola at top left will open the home
page of the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore.
- Scrolling of
- Docs. – permits
scrolling of the documents of the digital archive according to archival
collocation (based on
document code, containing letter of archive, identifying number of the
unit, number of leaf, progressive lettering for each act).
- Date – permits
scrolling of documents in chronological order.
The MAIN PANEL of the screen changes aspect
and function choice according to the level of research attained.
1. Search definition guide to research based
the options so far selected, with brief explanation of the active
indications for the next step.
2. Lists of words and items: in the Indices, Topics
2, Reference and Texts functions, the selection of a segment of indices
left navigation bar gives access to a page in the central panel in
which all the
elements contained in the group can be browsed. A second column
indicates the number of occurrences of the
single elements. The selection of a word or item leads to the page with
the documents corresponding to the element requested.
3. Lists of documents having the requisites ordered
by the user. This page presents three columns with the essential
data of each document; an additional fourth column appears as needed to
the context of the term queried or display the specifying texts present
- Document: the unique number
assigned to each individual act. This code number synthesizes all data
the source collocation: letter for archive, archival unit collocation
translated into Arabic numerals, leaf number and finally letter
indicating the act's position in the sequence on the page.
Example: the second act
on c. [“carta” or folio] 3 verso of the book II 1 70 of the archive
of the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore (monogram “O”) is coded thus:
- Date: document date.
- Summary: brief synthesis of the act’s content.
- Context or Results of query, Specification:
the context or
specifications corresponding to the element being searched.
- The data of the page can
be ordered according to any one of the columns by clicking its title at
top. A vertical red arrow appears
at the top of the order-active column.
- The words and items
selected from the indices appear in red at the top of the page. By
the black arrows to the sides it is possible to call up the terms
adjacent to the element currently being searched without starting a new
- If a query returns very
long lists, these will occupy several pages that can be called up for
in clusters of 150 items by clicking on the numbers displayed at the
each page. Documents with more than one element
corresponding to the terms of the query produce separate lines for each
- It is possible to access the complete
entries for single documents by clicking on the document’s code number
the first column of the lists.
4. Entry for each document, articulated into two
- The essential identifying
for the document (date, archival collocation, type, summary of
contents) and a
complete transcription of the act supplied with appropriate
annotations. This first part of
the entry also comprises bibliography and relational links
other documents of the digital archive, when present.
- The arrows ()
preceding the information inserted in the document
entries are active as backlinks, or “stairs” to step up to
Example: The stairs arrow on the
archival collocation leads to the description
of the archival unit or book, where other documents in the unit can be
leaf by leaf.
- It is possible to search for words in the text
of the active document
using the internet browser.
- Links to related documents are active and
will directly call up acts identified by the editors as parallel
redactions to the
document under consideration or as texts to which it specifically
refers (as in
the case of a revoked deliberation).
- The analysis carried out on the
document in accordance with the structures foreseen by the project
topics for guided research, documentary and chronological references).
- The “stairs” indicated by arrows in front of the index
subject elements permit the user to climb back to the preceding
Examples: from a name, climb back to
the index level whence other acts
containing the same name can be searched and collected. The “stair”
in front of each subject leads back to all the entries for that
- The word GROUP in some topic categories refers
to a series of names in
the indices; selecting the word GROUP yields a new redaction of the
all the names involved in the group highlighted.
Image viewing takes place in an environment distinct from the textual
edition, allowing both browser tabs to remain active for comparison. For an
optimal use of the various viewing options, a fast Internet connection
is advisable. The viewing functions are divided into two levels.
1. OVERVIEW: Context and navigation. Access to
images is afforded, at the level of the entries for individual
documents, by clicking "view image" at top. The initial view shows the
full-page image of the leaf on which the document appears (or the first
leaf if the act continues to another) with the area occupied by the act
under consideration graphically framed (it may be necessary to scroll
the image). The left bar furnishes a series of functions to
contextualize the image, to coordinate the photographic material
available for the current page and to navigate within the virtual
- The options at the top (Archive, Document code)
have "stairs" to return to the textual archive at either the leaf level
in order to consult the list of documents on it, or to the single entry
for the current document.
- More information about the nature of the current
image (digitized microfilm, photography with special lighting and image
processing, etc.) is available for all the images presented, full-page
as well as details.
- The map of documents button gives access to a
full-page image with all the acts mapped and marked with the relative
code number (green and blue). If disactivated, the leaf is shown
without mapping. It should be remembered that the transcription of
single acts excludes certain general annotations (date, subscription,
etc.), which may remain outside the document map but are fully visible
and accessible in the initial and subsequent views of the full page and
- The browse pages arrows review the other
available images of whole pages. This function allows the user to leaf
through all the leaves of the manuscripts, for which complete visual
documentation is present (in the prototype, only codex II 1 70).
- The map of details button is present when
detailed photographic documentation is available to enhance the
legibility of damaged codices. This function presents the full-page
image with superimposed red frames of details: to access them, click
inside the marked area. The map can be disactivated by reclicking the
button. The mapping of details also appears at the passage of the mouse
along the full page image. Note that when two detail maps overlap, the
uppermost of the two maps will be called up. The detail map can be
disactivated with a second click. It can remain active together with
the document map in the same window, helping to identify the details
useful for a line of research.
- After a detail has been called up, the browse
details arrows allow the user to review all details available for a
leaf, moving backwards and forwards.
- The back to full page arrow calls back the
full-page image from any detail view.
2. DIGILIB (Digital Document Library): Image
management. For every image it is possible to access a second
environment equipped with image management tools. The image active at
the time of the selection of this new environment (full page, mapped
section of full page) reappears, reframed, in the program's viewing
field. Digilib image management is also available for photographic
The main functions of Digilib are scaling and framing
of the image in the viewing field. These commands act upon the
maximum-resolution image resident on the site's server, permitting the
expedited net transmission of only the requested fields. The usefulness
of enlargements for reading texts naturally depends upon the resolution
of the image in question which varies according to the type of
photography (from 300 dpi for direct digital imagery to much more
reduced parameters for details made under special lighting). The
following buttons are available:
In addition, two functions for comments and communications regarding
the images are available in Digilib:
- Zoom area defines a rectangular area within the
image that will then be enlarged to the full size of the Digilib
viewing field. Activate with three distinct mouse clicks: first on the
command button, second on the upper left-hand corner of the box to be
drawn, third on the lower right-hand corner of the box. (Release mouse
with each click, do not drag.)
- Zoom point enlarges an area to the viewing field
size around a point on the image selected by the user. To activate,
click on the button and then on the desired point of image.
- Zoom out restores the full-frame size of any
zoomed image. This function will bring up the full-page view even for
images viewed in Digilib starting from a single document. In such cases
four red markers record the boundaries of the rectangle enclosing the
- Move to moves the center of framing without
changing the zoom level. This allows reading to continue beyond the
edges of a zoomed image. Any marks affixed by the user (see below) will
remain in the newly framed image.
- Scale changes the scaling of an image without
cutting it to the size of the viewing field. Scale 1.0 shows the image
coterminous with the dimensions of the viewing field (the initial
view); 2.0 twice the measure of that field, and so forth. Scroll bars
appear alongside the main window for viewing large-scale images. Since
the larger the image, the longer the Internet time needed to download
it, this function is primarily recommended when a continuous view of
the entire image treated is desired. Note that from this position the zoom
out button works in reference to the scale currently selected.
No programming has been undertaken for the printing of images from
Overview or Digilib, although some browsers will allow rudimentary
printing procedures on the second level.
- Mark allows the user to mark the image
virtually. Up to 8 numbered marks can be placed by clicking first on
the "mark" button and then on the point to be marked (or up to 4 if the
first 4 have been used by the program to define a portion of a whole
page). These comments can be transmitted via the Reference
- Reference activates a link for the transmission
of the current image complete with markings. Choose LaTeX or HTML mode,
copy the complete URL furnished and "paste" it in the means of
communication chosen (e-mail, HTML document, etc.) to allow new direct
access to the image as marked.
For copyright norms regarding photographic
reproductions of the manuscripts published on this site, please see the
copyright section accessible from the home page. Images of manuscripts
are made available exclusively for personal and scholarly use of
individuals and cannot be reproduced in electronic or traditional
publications without the express written consent of the Opera di Santa
Maria del Fiore, which is the holder of all rights thereof.
The STUDIES button present on the top horizontal bar of the Archive gives access to the section of the online edition dedicated to research based upon the documentary corpus. This environment opens with the Index of available studies and general editorial information.
- Clicking on a highlighted title in the index opens the entry page of the essay with the invitation to choose between the fully interactive web HTML version and the PDF version, designed for clean editorial printing in the common A4 format.
- The ARCHIVE button present on the top horizontal bar of the Studies section provides access back to the digital archive of documents.
- Every document of the edition cited in the studies of the Digital Library can be consulted in its full entry by clicking on its highlighted unique code number, whether in the text, the notes, the tables or other analytical structures.
- A backlink system active from the Archive alerts the user to a reference to the current documentary entry in the studies and opens the HTML page of the relevant essay with search function pointing to the exact position of each such occurrence.
- An expandable index is available for the studies of the Digital Library during consultation of both the HTML and PDF versions. This tool points the reader to the various sections of the essay and remains at hand during the scrolling of its text.
- Both the essay and the documentary texts remain open as browser tabs until the user chooses to close them.
- The HTML versions offer other convenient functions, including the option of opening the auxiliary tools present (graphs, tables, illustrations) in separate popup windows which can remain in consultation while the user scrolls ahead in the reading of the main text.
For further indications on the use of the studies in HTML and PDF format, please see the Avvertenza notice present at the opening page of each essay.