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The Bibliotheca Polyglotta (BP) is a multilingual corpus of historically important texts. As such it is a resource to access the global history of concepts as displayed in a number of languages, and it demonstrates how concepts diffuse historically into new languages, and thus into new cultural contexts.

The BP is in a phase of being constructed, and contains so far the following libraries:

  • The Thesaurus Literaturae Buddhicae (TLB) contains a number of Buddhist multilingual texts (Sanskrit, Chinese, Tibetan, English, etc.). The TLB was the first library to be established under the project;
  • Biblia contains the Biblical Books of the Old Testament in Hebrew, Greek, Latin, English, and the complete New Testament in Greek, Latin, English, etc. More versions will be added with time;
  • Arabic Texts contains a multilingual Quran, so far in Arabic, English and Chinese, but Latin, Urdu, etc., are planned;
  • The Bibliotheca Polyglotta Graeca (BPG) contains the Greek literature of antiquity. So far it contains the Categories of Aristotle in Greek, Latin, Arabic, English, and Althochdeutsch, as well as Analytica PosterioraEuclid and the Hippocratic Oath. The Timaeus of Plato is under its way with input of Greek, Latin (Cicero, Calchidius and Ficino), English, and German, also under development are the multilingual HermeneuticsPrior AnalyticsRhetorics and more. The Mystical Theology (Greek, Latin, Syriac, Arabic, English) of Dionysius Areopagita is in place in the BPG;
  • The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is integrated as a distinct library, planned also to contain more resources on this document;
  • The Multilingual Ibsen (MI) makes available the numerous translations made of Henrik Ibsen's plays;
  • Sanskrit-Persica will contain literature translated from Sanskrit into Persian, and from Persian into other languages.

Another important and very influential multilingual is the Communist Manifest, soon to be a library on the application.

The texts will be accompanied with a number of resources such as bibliographies, introductions, comments and images of the original manuscripts from where they are edited.

The BP is also being developed as a tool for the publication of critical texts, where the lexicographical resources of the BP is available at the same time as the page mode will give the possibility for the full publication of new critical editions of any texts. These texts can be written out on paper if needed.

The milieus connected with the BP are committed to the principles of Open Access on the Internet, and any resource found on the application may freely be used as long as it does not conflict with exactly those principles. In cases of exceptions to this principle, where those having donated texts to the application wish to keep various kinds of copyrights, the actual resource has been protected with a pass-word, which can be accessed in accordance with the conditions stated.

One can search any word or phrase in the corpus or in a chosen set of texts and have the search results written out, and further access any search result in its sentence by sentence multilingual mode by clicking on the reference in the search result. Every sentence in the BP has a Permanent link as a unique identification. The permanent link may be extracted by clicking on "Permanent link" on the bottom of the screen, and may be used as a reference to access the multilingual record which it refers to.

It is possible to write out the texts sentence by sentence in a multilingual format, and move from one sentence to the next. However, the texts can also be written out in a page mode with the text and its translations side by side in a traditional synoptic mode.

The BP is connected with a research project named Multilingualism, Linguae Francae and the Global History of Religious and Scientific Concepts. It is a resource page for this project, and hopefully for other activities connected to understanding and describing the conceptual history of the world. Thus the BP project is also a cooperation with the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science.

The BP is a cumulative work in its initial stages, with its origin connected to The Norwegian Institute of Palaeography and Historical Philology.

Students and scholars are cordially invited to input their favorite multilingual texts and to contribute any material to the project. At the University of Oslo, the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages, seminars are conducted for students and scholars to study a number of multilingual philologies, e.g. Sanskrit, Tibetan, Chinese and Greek, Latin, Arabic. Those who might wish to participate in the seminars or the BP project, and those who would like to have more information on the BP, may contact Jens Braarvig. Any comments and corrections are also very much welcomed.

The copyrights for all the texts in the Bibliotheca Polyglotta belongs to Jens Braarvig and the Norwegian Institute of Palaeography and Historical Philology. Any fair use of the texts is allowed under general Open Access conditions. 

The Bibliotheca Polyglotta application is Copyright 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 University of Oslo, Norwegian Institute of Palaeography and Historical Philology, Jens Braarvig, Asgeir Nesøen, and released under the GNU General Public License version 3.

A research group at the Faculty of Humanities, University of Oslo, is responsible for the editing and for the further development of the Bibliotheca Polyglotta project, and consists of: Professor Jens Braarvig (IKOS), Professor Dag T. Haug (IFIKK), Professor Frode Helland (ILN) and Professor Stephan Guth (IKOS).

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Utviklet av: Jens Braarvig, Asgeir Nesøen, Damir Nedic and Heidi Løken
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