Publication details

Metrics for the identification of primary centers of government from historical itineraries: Přemysl Otakar II: A case study

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Year of publication 2022
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source SocArxiv Papers
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Keywords geohumanities; spatial data analysis; medieval studies; royal itinerary analysis; medieval administration; centers of government; governance; Přemysl Ottokar II.; Czech lands; Austria; high Middle Ages
Description The royal charters and chronicles present a unique historical source for researching power distribution and administration of the medieval kingdom. This paper presents an attempt to progress in the analytical approaches presented by German historians from the 1980s and 1990s to study the governance of the medieval kingdom. Inspired by the use of newly acquainted digital methods in humanities, we compare the analytical metrics implemented on the Přemysl Otakar II (1251-1278) activity itinerary dataset to study the identification of primary centers of his government. The data for the study were collected based on the historical research of available sources and transformed and cleaned into a data table of king's activities and a list of geocoded localities. To study the king's movement in spacetime, we also needed to reconstruct the travel routes and the corresponding travel time estimation. In the next step, we selected and implemented twelve metrics ranging from fundamental statistical analysis, and geostatistics, to network analysis to evaluate the dataset and identify the primary centers of the reign of the king. Further, we provided the comparison of all used metrics in the sense of visual analysis, methodological point of view, and from the perspective of their historical interpretation. In addition to providing a methodological extension to the research of historical itineraries, the outcomes of the analyses brought a new contribution to the historical research of the administration of the medieval kingdom
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