Multilingual dictionary of archival terminology



In the present historical context, an uniformity of language and contents is needed in archival science, to achieve a greater and more profitable preservation of the historical, cultural and juridical heritage. From this point of view, vital is the unambiguous identification of the concepts used during the daily activities, in order to defend this heritage, and obtain a perfect coincidence of meaning in the various languages of the countries currently dealing with these problems, and of those having to deal with it in the near future.
In order to ensure a proper management of the archival heritage, and to avoid the risk of dispersal, or, worse than ever, a definitive and irreparable loss, it is very important reaching a standardised language (not by force of circumstances a trivialisation) of the technical-scientific language regarding archival science. In the meantime, professionals, private and public archival administrations, and users will be supplied with an instrument of clear communication, in order to establish a common language fostering the best integration and exchange of unequivocal data.
The IIAS has identified the above mentioned instrument in a Short Dictionary of Archival Terminology, whose main target is to link every single term of a language to a single term of another language, to: supply users with an immediate cross-reference; to identify as accurately as possible the related concept.
Quite an ambitious task, indeed, and not so easy to fulfil. But the IIAS Short Dictionary of Archival Terminology will not be a static but a work in progress resulting from a continuous updating of languages, according to the linguistic development. It will also be very dynamic in the field of archival science and electronic data management in particular. A sharp instrument, always ready to perform its extraordinary function, i.e. not a mere technical or scientific function, but also (and above all) a function of contact, exchange and cooperation among and between different geopolitical worlds.
The fact that the IIAS Short Dictionary of Archival Terminology is taking into particular account, probably for the first time in the history of archival science, the area of Eastern, Southern and Central Europe deserves mentioning, while previous editions of similar dictionaries have been issued as classic bilingual dictionaries, or taking into consideration the four or five most spoken languages in the world at the most. This is one of the best targets of this projects, together with the equivalence of the terminology among the languages of this area.
The online edition of the IIAS Dictionary of Archival Terminology is currently under implementation. The first edition was issued as a working tool on the occasion of the IIAS Autumn Archival School 2007. During the school, the participants cooperated by translating into their own mother languages, in a spirit of effective and mutual collaboration, creating a new, updated and dynamic instrument of knowledge and working tool.
Hence, the authors commit themselves, to add to this online edition of the IIAS Dictionary of Archival Terminology all the terms and neologisms which should catch archivistsí attention as unambiguous terminology in archival science.
Scientific coordination by Grazia TatÚ and Antonio Monteduro; digital editing by Marcello Scrignar and Carmelo Bianco.

Consult the dictionary