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Ain Karem Church of Saint John the Baptist in the Mountain, Custody of the Holy Land

  • JM-ASCTS/CR/SGBMontana
  • Fonds
  • [1727]-[1989]

After the expulsion of the Christian religious community which settled there for the first time in 1427, the convent located in Ain Karem at Saint John the Baptist's birtplace was founded in 1679. Its oldest archives still held by the Custody of the Holy Land are dated from the beginning of the 18th century. The entire fonds consist of general correspondence and of documents related to canonical visits and regulations for instance,

Custody of the Holy Land (CTS)

Alexander Dushkin Papers - P 134

  • JM-CAHJP/P134
  • Fonds
  • 1910-01-01-1975-12-31

In addition to his professional activities, Dushkin was involved in many other aspects of Jewish life, such as the Reconstructionist movement in the USA, the David Yellin Teachers’ Seminary and the Neot Kedumim Biblical reserve in Israel. He maintained close friendships with many affluent American Jews, who often contributed funds to the various causes with which he was connected.
The papers reflect these activities and friendships.
Dushkin’s files are arranged in a loose chronological order. Most of the files contain private correspondence as well as letters on a variety of subjects, of which only the major ones have been mentioned in the file descriptions.

Alexander M. Dushkin (AMD)

Arabic documents related to Ottoman Jerusalem. (“al-Quds”)

  • BG-NBKM/F283AR
  • Fonds
  • 1647-07-11-1874-02-15

Since the documents were sent from Istanbul and mostly from the former Ottoman ministry of finances’s depositories, they mainly deal with financial issues and are related to all the former Ottoman provinces ( the Balkans, Anatolia, the Arabian Peninsula, and North Africa).

The preface of 1984 Sofia’s catalogue explains the way the archival units are described:
[p. 30] From the point of view of diplomatics, the archives in Arabic and Ottoman-Turkish offer mainly the same documents: maktub, daftar, mahdar, sanad, etc. [...].
[p. 31] The elements of the description of each document are defined first of all by the characteristics of the material itself and by the ideas already expressed, concerning the importance of this archive which appears to be a solid basis for the study of important aspects of the economic, political, cultural and religious life of the people of North Africa, the Near and the Middle East, the Caucasus, etc. in the age of the Ottoman-Turkish feudalism. The experience of Bulgarian archivists, who have published archives in Bulgarian and foreign languages, preserved in the National Library and other institutions in the country has been taken into consideration.
In general every description of a document consists of two parts. Part I includes the following elements: date, place of issue, type and number of documents, author, addressee, a brief content and supplementary notes on it.
The date of issue or writing of the document is given first according to the Christian calendar and thereafter the Moslem (i.e. as it is given in the original). When one description contains several documents of different dates, we indicate the earliest and the latest with a dash (-) between the two. Thus we show the whole period covered by the documents [...]. In cases when there is no date on the document, or there are only fragments of the document whose date was eventually on the missing part we proceed as follows:

  • if possible we date the document according to the historical event described in it [...].
  • when the documents mention Turkish sultans or Grand wazirs, the date is given according to their rule. In cases when names of other well-known people in the political history of the Arab countries are mentioned and whose biographical data cannot be defined, we date the document according to their activity reflected in
    it. If such a document bears also a stamp with a date, we record it at the end thus confirming our considerations when dating it.
  • in the cases when we date the documents only according to the Moslem date recorded on the seal of the document, we give only the initial date of the corresponding Christian year, which means that the document has not been written before that date.
    Provided there is no way to date a document, because we cannot make use of any of the above-mentioned possibilities, we resort to paleographic data (paper, watermark, script, ink, handwriting). In such cases we denote the century only and when it is possible to be more concrete, supplement it with phrases like "the
    beginning", "the end", "the first half", etc. [...].

The place of issue of the document shows the settlement in which it has been written or prepared and is given immediately after the date. When the name of the town is missing in the document but we can still define it by logical considerations we write it down in square brackets. When there is no possibility to define the place of issue we use the abbreviation "s.l." (sine loco).

The type of document (daftar, maktub, raftiyya, kasf, etc.) is not always mentioned in the text itself (or above it). In such case we define it on the basis of some principles in the Ottoman-Turkish diplomatics. When the description includes several documents of the same kind, the figure in brackets after the name
of the document shows their number [...]. When the archive unit contains documents of another type also, in some cases for clarity we mark down in brackets which consecutive leaf is the described document.

The author is the person or the authority that has issued the document. In most cases it comes from the same settlement in which the document has been prepared. For that reason the settlement is not mentioned again after his name and office. The name of the author is given in square brackets when it is missing in the document and it has been identified indirectly.

The addressee is the person or the institution to whom the document is addressed and the settlement where he is to be found. This element is not present in all descriptions, since in most cases it is difficult to be established. All additionally fixed data are placed also in square brackets.

The content of the document is the most important part of the description. Our ambition is to render it fully as much as possible and to give in concise form that information in the document which will be made use in further studies. The annotations points out first of all the event and the persons taking part in it, their position and titles, also the names of settlements, gamis, mazra'as, muqata'as, or it is mentioned whether the document contains such information.It is mentioned also whether the archive unit includes documents in Ottoman-Turkish and if so their content is also reflected in the annotation.

The supplementary notes can be of various kind, but the most common are the additional entries. These are the legalizations, notes, decisions, resolutions, accounts, etc., made on the top or in the margins of the main text by the financial authorities, predominantly in Ottoman Turkish. Moreover, in the earlier documents they are in “siyaqat”, “diwani” or in “inge diwani”. In order to avoid repetition, these details were not included in the description.

When the annotated document is “hugga zahriyya” (“hügget-i zahriyye”) we mention also the type of the document (original or copy in Ottoman-Turkish) given at the back. If the document was prepared by a person other than the one that had issued the “hugga zahriyya”, we mention his name and position as well [...].
Part II of the description of the documents is concerned with their paleographic characteristics. It includes the following elements: number and size of leaves, paper, condition of the document and text in respect to their preservation, watermark, ink, script, seals and reasons for dating.

Ministry of Finance of the Ottoman Empire (ML)

Archive of Friar Paschal Robinson ofm (1870-1948), mission as Apostolic Visitator in Palestine

  • VA-ASV/Robinson
  • Fonds
  • 1919-01-01-1938-12-31

Before being appointed Titular of the new Apostolic Nonciature in Ireland (1929-1948), Fr Paschal Robinson ofm (1870-1948) had an intense diplomatic activity on behalf of the Holy See, in particular of the Secretariat of State and the Congregations for the Oriental Church and Propaganda Fide.
After his death, Mgr Domenico Tardini, at that time secretary of the Congregation for Extraordinary Ecclesiastical Affairs, ordered to preserve the documents of his missions as Apostolic Visitator in Palestine and Apostolic Delegate in Malta. Then the documents were deposited in the ASV.
The six folders mainly concerns the Apostolic visits to Palestine entrusted to Fr Robinson by the Congregation for the Oriental Church (1925-1928) and the Congregation for Propaganda Fide (1920-1921; 1927-1928).

Friar Paschal Robinson ofm (PCR)

Archive of Kingdom of Sardinia, Consulate of Palestine (1843-1849) then Kingdom of Italy, Consulate in Palestine then Consulate general of Italy in Jerusalem (1872-1943)

  • Fonds
  • 1843-1943

The oldest documents in the Consulate fonds date back to 1843, to the foundation of the Consulate of Palestine during the Kingdom of Sardinia. According to the papers the Consulate closed in 1849 leaving the defence of the citizens to the Consulate of France.

The Royal Decree dated November 17th, 1871 establishes the Italian Consulate in Palestine. The papers cover the history of the Consulate until its closure, in June 10th, 1940. At that date the protection of Italian interests was entrusted to the Spanish Consulate. The activity of Consul Quinto Mazzolini and his Bureau in Rome (Ufficio Stralcio) lasted during 1943.

Consulate General of Italy in Jerusalem (CGIG)

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