Early Modern (1450 CE - 1800 CE)

The cover of a Hindi copy of the Laws of Manu

Laws of Manu

The Manu-smriti, or Laws of Manu, are of the most authoritative codes of Hinduism in India, dating back to approximately 1

A image of a kasai velvet textile, woven in a diamond pattern in cream and black

Kasai Velvet, Democratic Republic of the Congo

Despite its name, Kasai velvet, or velours du kasai, is not actually a velvet.

A detail of the Bayeux Tapestry, depicting two horsemen in battle

Analyzing Primary Sources on Women in World History

Traditionally, historical writing focused on elites and often rendered women invisible unless they were queens or empresses.

Several pages taken from the Veritable Records of the Chosŏn Dynasty

Veritable Records of the Chosŏn Dynasty

In the twenty-first century, we are used to post-Westphalian norms of inter-state equality and noninterference. These norms, however, did not apply to interstate relations between the Qing empire and its tributary states.

Page from the Pentaglot Manchu Glossary from

Page from the Pentaglot Manchu Glossary

The Qing empire was founded by the Manchus, and they used a language and a script that were distinct from those used in China Proper.

Page from the Qing Veritable Records

Page from Qing Veritable Records

The Qing court used a twelve-month lunar calendar based on the sexagenary cycle, distinct from the solar Gregorian calendar used by most of the world today. This page from the Qing Veritable Records (Da Qing shilu) provides a good example.

Page from the Qing Veritable Records

Short Teaching Module: Translation and a World History of the Qing Empire

In 1953, L. P. Hartley famously wrote: “The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there." His observation is particularly relevant for world historians, who have to engage in translation projects to bridge the distance between our world and the worlds of our historical actors.

Painting of The Batavia Castle seen from the Kali Besar West

The Batavia Castle

Seventeenth-century market in the city Batavia (nowadays Jakarta, Indonesia), the central node of Dutch imperial activities in the Indian Ocean region. The Batavia Castle is visible in the background and to its right the Council of Justice with the gallows and whipping post in front of it.

The page of a diary with hand writing on it

Analyzing Personal Accounts

Personal accounts, including memoirs, journals, diaries, autobiographies, and life histories, are important historical sources that help us understand the human condition. These are the stories we tell about our lives that usually portray a larger picture of a life in historical context.

Title page of Memoirs and Poems of Phillis Wheatley, with the subtitle "A Native African and a Slave" and dedicated to the friends of the Africans.

Memoirs and Poems of Phillis Wheatley

Phillis Wheatley (c.1753-1784) was an enslaved African American poet and author. Despite this, the work Memoirs and Poems of Phillis Wheatley was compiled and the memoirs themselves written by Margaretta Matilda Odell, a supposed "collateral descendent of Mrs.