At transcriptiones, all levels of completion are welcome – from rough drafts to fully developed transcriptions. By revising and extending existing transcriptions, you help the community to achieve optimal and comprehensive transcriptions.

If you would like to upload transcriptions, add to, or correct existing ones, please see the instructions below. Frequently asked questions can be found here.

If your collection of transcriptions is too large for the standard upload process, please contact us via the batch upload form.


When uploading a transcription, the form will present you with a range of metadata to be specified. The fields marked with an asterisk must be filled in. All other fields are optional but facilitate finding the transcriptions in the database.

When entering a memory institution or a reference number, already existing entries are automatically displayed. If possible, select the appropriate institution or reference number from there. If you need to add a new archive to the database, it needs to be named according to the list by the Association of Swiss Archivists which can be found here.

If a new reference number needs to be added, please use the exact form as it is listed by the corresponding institution. Upon adding a new reference number, you will also be asked to supply a title of said reference entry. Please use the same title as it is listed by the corresponding institution, if possible. Note as well, that the title of the reference number and the title of the transcribed document might not be the same. A reference number with the title "Letters XY", for example, could contain Documents with titles such as "Letter A" and "Letter B".

When specifying a scribe, the existing records are displayed as well. There might be different versions of a name, so please try various spellings and only add a new name if it really is necessary. Be aware, however, that these names do not correspond to entities (i.e. unambiguously identifiable persons).

When uploading a document, you will also be asked to specify its source type. This classification is based on the content and formal aspects of the original documents. The list of source types to choose from is organized in two layers. Please refer to the following schema to find out about the available source types.

You can either directly transcribe in the editor or paste your transcription from an existing file. If you copy them from a formatted file (doc, .docx, .pdf, .xls, .xlsx, Google Docs, Google Sheets, .odf), almost all formatting as well as tables and footnotes will be preserved.

Finding Transcriptions

Uploaded transcriptions can be found in different ways: On the one hand, you can click on the collection button and go to the desired transcription via the institutions, source types or writers, on the other hand, you can start a field search.

Edits and Additions

At transcriptiones, community members support each other. In this sense, you can edit and extend all transcriptions. Please check exactly which archival document the initial transcriber is referring to, especially if a reference number contains multiple documents. All changes you have made must be specified in the field ‘Changes’ in order to make the history of edits as transparent as possible.

You can view the latest versions of a document. Each version of a transcription has a static URL which allows for easy linking and citing of a certain version. The same URL without its version number will always direct to the latest version of that transcription. If you need to restore an older version, please contact the transcriptiones team via the contact form. If you notice vandalism or other inadequate behaviour, please contact the transcriptiones team via the same form. We will block the user in question.

Do you have questions about entering metadata? You have transcribed a source from abroad and do not know how to identify the archive? Your transcriptions are in a different format than specified above (e.g. XML or TEI)? Do not hesitate to contact us – we are happy to help!

Transcription Guidelines

In order to achieve some degree of uniformity, we recommend following the transcription guidelines of Ad fontes. The complete guidelines can be found here.
These are the basic rules according to Ad fontes: "The text should be followed as exactly as possible, so that the text layers of the source are recognizable. The transcription should reproduce the linguistic (including orthographic) form of the original, and not just the historical-factual content."
Marking page breaks of the original source facilitates further extension of the transcription. Please mark them if possible, preferably using the page/folio number.


If you are particularly interested in an institution, a signature, or specific writers, you can subscribe to them. With such a subscription, you will be notified by e-mail when a new document has been added to this unit or an existing document has been edited in it. Furthermore, you can subscribe to those users who do not publish anonymously. You will be notified when this person has published new work. To subscribe, you must be registered and signed in. In your user account, you can cancel your subscriptions as well as specify how often you would like to be notified by e-mail about the changes.

Direct messages between users

If a user does not publish anonymously, you can send a direct message to that person and exchange information about the transcription or the source. The usernames of the contributing users are indicated at the signature and document levels. Click on the corresponding username to write a direct message to this person. To use this function, you must be registered and logged in. In your user account, you can read and reply to the received messages. Furthermore, you can specify how often you would like to be notified about the new messages by e-mail.