From the e-ZISS website:

The e-ZISS digital critical editions of Slovenian literature offer selected Slovenian texts with integrated facsimiles, transcriptions and scholarly commentary, in some cases including audiovisual recordings.

The e-ZISS project strives to create a synthesis of three components. The first one is the tradition of Slovenian literature, reaching from medieval manuscripts and folk songs to works of literary art. The second component is ecdotics – the tradition of philological study of texts and their presentations in critical editions. The third component is modern information technology… Digital critical editions do not supersede classical printed editions, but offer several additions, and a way to a more varied reader’s reception.

There are a number of items at the site, but the one my correspondent Paul alerted me to is particularly striking, the Freising Manuscripts:

The Freising Manuscripts are the earliest document of Slovenian culture. They are the earliest preserved writings in Slovenian as well as the earliest Slavic texts, written in the Latin alphabet….

The present edition offers a historical overview of the most important scholarly editions of the Freising manuscripts. It contains several diplomatic, critical and phonetic transcriptions and translations of the manuscripts into Latin and five modern European languages. This edition also contains a series of studies and commentaries, a glossary of the words used in the manuscripts, a bibliography and other appendices. The electronic edition is also enriched with a spoken reconstruction in early Slovenian, integrated with the transcription of the manuscripts eg. in modern Slovenian.

Even if you have no particular interest in Slovenian, the presentation of text in facsimile and various transcriptions and translations, with glossary and other apparatus, is exemplary, and I hope to see this kind of thing become more and more common.

Thanks, Paul!


  1. They are the earliest preserved writings in Slovenian
    Slovenian? Of Slovenian provenience, surely, but what makes their language Slovenian?

  2. If the language of the earliest Bulgarian manuscripts can be called “Old Bulgarian”, even though modern Bulgarian is based on a somewhat different set of dialects, then the language of the Friesing Texts can fairly be called “Old Slovenian”. I believe Auty’s reader calls them such as well.

  3. Christopher,
    I suppose so, but it still sounds pretty fishy, especially considering that a) Freising Manuscripts are copies of pre-1000 texts (9th century, IIRC) and to speak of anything but dialects of Old/Common Slavic at that time is strange; and b) the high number of Western Slavic features in FM which suggest it was composed elsewhere.
    It strongly reminds me of the ridiculous claim that the Kiev Folia actually represent the earliest stage in the development of Slovak.

  4. Having gotten to this post via Random Link, I’m struck by the word ecdotics (“the tradition of philological study of texts and their presentations in critical editions”). It’s not anywhere in the OED (“No results found for ‘ecdotic’”); Google Books finds a fair number of occurrences (“submitted to ecdotic analysis”; “On the ecdotic level, when the text is edited”; “the radical ecdotic choice made by Plutarch,” etc.), but they all seem to be by authors whose native language is not English. Ecdotique exists in French, and I presume similar words are in other European languages, and of course anyone familiar with Greek ἐκδοτικός (adjective of ἔκδοσις, which can mean ‘publishing’) could use it without thinking much about whether it was a preexisting English word; I’ve posted about other such words on the outer fringes of the English lexicon.

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