The Nottingham Corpus of Early Modern German Midwifery and Women's Medicine (ca. 1500-1700)
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The Nottingham Corpus of Early Modern German Midwifery and Women’s Medicine (ca. 1500-1700), or the GeMi Corpus, provides a representative sample of the earliest German-language medical writing to appear in print, particularly in the areas of midwifery and women’s medicine related to pregnancy and childbirth. It is the first corpus devoted exclusively to Fachsprache, or specialised language usage, thus complementing extant corpora for German that focus more on several genres or just literary discourse. This is a particularly interesting time in the history of midwifery and gynaecology, for it is the period when there is increased vernacularization of European languages in scientific/medical writing, scholastic-based models of medicine are being abandoned, and practising midwives such as Louise Bourgeois and Justine Siegemund – frustrated with the perceived inadequecies of texts written by learned physicians – begin writing their own midwifery treatises.
Texts are taken primarily from digital facsimile copies available on-line via the University of Würzburg’s web-based library interface, Digitale Volltexte zur Geschichte der deutschen Fach- und Wissenschaftssprachen (http://www.fachtexte.germanistik.uni-wuerzburg.de/), particularly from the subcategory of Gynäkologie ‘gynaecology’ (http://www.fachtexte.germanistik.uni-wuerzburg.de/suche.php?suche=sachbereich&formular=go&sachbereich=30). Where this is not the case (mainly in the texts by Rösslin and Rüff), a 1910 facsimile copy (ed. Gustav Klein) was used as the basis of transcription instead.
Diplomatic transcription, double keying, and proofreading. The data represent partial copies of the works in question (sometimes the majority of text was keyed in, but there always some omissions in one form or another).