New Sources for Socio-Cultural History: Artistocracy’s Inventories of Assets from Romanian Principalities in 18th and 19th Centuries
Project financed by Executive Unit for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding
project code: PN-II-RU-PD-2012-3-0386, contract nr. 71 / 30.04.2013

Results 2013

The project started on 1 May 2013 and in the first eight months logistic activities, documentation and drafting of a first scientific study were planned. Within the organizational and logistical preparation phase of the project, have been purchased equipment, software, supplies, stationery and books necessary for a proper conduct of scientific activities. It has also started the project’s website: www.averiboieresti.ro.

Within the documentation activities, two mobility stages were performed. The first stage was conducted from 30 June to 14 July at the Iasi Service of National Archives and “Mihai Eminescu” University Library in Iasi, where a large number of documents, manuscripts, studies and books needed for the project have been identified and photocopied. Some of these sources will be published in a volume of documents submitted in the project and others documents will be used in future studies of the project.

The second stage of documentation was conducted from 30 August to 15 September 2013 at the University of Vienna, and it has resulted in the identification and consultation of bibliographic resources of central library and its subsidiaries funds. We have also visited several museums which contain consistent information about inventories of assets, household objects and interior design specific for social elite in the nineteenth century (Hofburg Silberkamer, Hofmobiliendepot, Vienna Museum).

The first scientific results of this phase of activity were summarized in a case study: Dan Dumitru Iacob, “Landowners’ children at the pension. Education in the family of boyar Iancu Costache-Negel (1838–1861)”, 60 pages, taught to print. On this occasion, in addition to the original sources, we used inventories of wealth and income and expenditure records of boyar Costache-Negel’s family in Moldova. The documents have been preserved at the Iași Service of National Archives.

In the context of preliminary and final dissemination of results which were the basis for drafting the study, two papers were elaborated and presented at two national conferences:

Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The education of boyar Iancu Costache-Negel’s children (1838–1861)”, presented at the Third National Conference of the Reflection Group on Political and Social History of the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries, Iași, from 8 to 9 November 2013.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The education of Metropolitan Veniamin Costache’s grand-granddaughters at Morangiés Pension in Iași (1845–1848)”, paperwork presented at the annual conference of the Institute of Social Studies and Humanities in Sibiu, entitled “Social Sciences and Humanities at the Beginning of the Third Millennium”, sixth edition, Sibiu, 13 December 2013.

The collaboration between the project manager, Dr. Dumitru Iacob, and mentor, Dr. Paul Niedermaier, was permanent and effective, from scientific but also organizational perspective. Mentor supervised the activities of the general organization and logistical preparation of the project, he has made recommendations concerning the mobility, especially extern mobility to Vienna, he has stimulated the editorial effort of the project manager by providing good working conditions, he offered to the project manager the bibliographic resources and he took part at scientific meetings where partial results of the project were disseminated.

From a financial perspective, the budget for this period / year corresponded to the needs of the project, being fully used. In conclusion, we believe that the objectives set for the first phase of the project, for the period 1 May to 31 December 2013, were fulfilled.

Expected results 2014

Scientific objectives assumed for 2014 consist in two documentary trips in Romania, the publication of two specialized studies and a volume of studies and documents, the presentation of two scientific paper works and organizing a national conference.

Results 2014

In the second stage of the project, for the year 2014, logistics activities, documentation and bibliographic processing and drafting and dissemination of scientific results were planned and carried out.

Logistics activities consisted of completing the documentary material base and purchase of equipment, supplies, books and studies. It has also been updated and developed the project website: www.averiboieresti.ro.

Documentation activities consisted in three documentary trips to the Central Historical National Archives and the Library of the Romanian Academy Bucharest, from 18 to 23 May and from 12 to 24 October 2014, and to the Iaşi Service of Romanian National Archives and “Mihai Eminescu” University Library, from 27 to 31 October 2014. On these occasions we identified and photographed numerous documents, manuscripts, studies and books needed for the project, of which we mention those related to family-Roznovanu Rosetti, Bals, Cantacuzino, Krupenschi and Veisa. Some of these documents have been used or attached to studies published in 2014 and other part of them will be published in the volume of documents, in the collective volume of the conference and in the studies undertaken for the final phase of the project.

We have also visited two museums (National Art Museum in Bucharest, and Union Museum in Iaşi) which hold domestic and ecclesiastical inventory objects and interiors design typical for social elite in eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Thematic exhibitions of those museums helped us to become familiar with a number of representative objects specific for material culture of Romanian elites from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, which can be found listed in the inventories of assets.

The scientific results of this phase of activity consisted of drafting the three scientific studies, published in collective volumes and scientific periodicals, and three scientific papers, presented at national and international conferences. With regard to the volume of studies and documents, because we intend to add as many new sources as possible identified during the documentation trips in 2014, we postponed its publication for the final phase of the project, for 2015. According to the objectives assumed for the current research stage, it has been organized a national conference in September 2014.

Studies published in 2014:

Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The Importance of Inventories of Assets for Everyday Life History in the Modern Era”, in Globalization and Intercultural Dialogue: Multidisciplinary Perspectives. Section: History, ed. Iulian Boldea, Târgu-Mureș, Publisher Archipelago XXI, 2014, p. 259-270.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The vornic Gheorghe Beldiman's Will (25 May 1790)”, in Retrospecţii medievale. In honorem Professoris emeriti Ioan Caproşu, eds. Victor Spinei, Laurențiu Rădvan and Arcadie Bodale, „Alexandru Ioan Cuza” Iași University Publishing House, Iași, 2014, p. 291-330 (Summary).

Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The House of Ruxandra Balș (former Bașotă) from Iaşi. The Household Inventory in 1875”, in Historia Urbana, XXII, 2014, p. 293-308.

In the context of dissemination of preliminary results that were the basis for preparation of these studies, three communications were drafted and presented at national scientific conferences:

Participation in conferences in 2014:

Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The Will and Estate Inventory of lady Smaranda Balș (1833/1848)”, paper presented at the national conference “Wealth Inventories of Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries”, organized by the Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities in Sibiu, 26-27 September 2014.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The vornic Gheorghe Beldiman’s Wealth”, paper presented at the national conference “Court Society and Everyday Life in the Romanian Society (XVI–XIX)” organized by the Babes-Bolyai University / Faculty of History and Philosophy / Historical Anthropology Seminar, Reflection Group on the Political and Social History of the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century, Bucharest University / Faculty of Political Science and “Nicolae Iorga” History Institute in Bucharest, Cluj-Napoca, 7 to 8 November 2014.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, “The structure of a boyar household in Iasi at 1875. Ruxandra Balș houses”, paper presented at the annual conference of the Institute of Social Science and Humanities in Sibiu, entitled “Social Sciences and Humanities at the Beginning of the Third Millennium”, seventh edition, Sibiu, 12 December 2014.

Conferences organized in 2014:

From 26 to 27 September 2014 we organized the national conference “Wealth Inventories of Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries” held at the Institute of Social Science and Humanities in Sibiu. 26 researchers from academic institutes, universities, museums and archives from Romania (Bucharest, Iași, Cluj-Napoca, Sibiu, Craiova, Resița, Piatra Neamț) and Moldova (Chișinău) participated at the event. The conference emphasized the great potential of inventories of assets, it has used with predilection unpublished historical sources, proposed new methods, research directions and approaches of this type of documents. During the event it was organized a thematic debate where it was presented and analysed scientific results on national and international level concerning the using of inventories of assets and the related sources, the directions and research fields to which these sources are suitable for and the methodological and editorial issues related to publishing the sources. The results of this conference will be published in a collective volume in 2015.

This year the project director, Dr. Dumitru Iacob received advice and support from the mentor, Dr. Paul Niedermaier. His involvement has been concentrated mainly on activities related to project management and results dissemination. From a financial perspective, the budget for this period / year was in accordance with the needs of the project ant it was fully used. In conclusion, we believe that the objectives set for the second phase of the project, for the year 2014, have been carried out.

Expected results 2015

Scientific objectives assumed for 2015 consist in two documentary trips, one of which abroad, the publication of a study and a collective volume of studies and documents, participation at national and international conferences and disseminating results.

Results until 31 October 2015

In the third stage of the project, which is also the last one, logistics activities, documentation and bibliographic processing and drafting and dissemination of scientific results were planned and carried out.

Logistics activities consisted in completing the documentary material base and purchase of equipment, supplies, books and studies. The project’s website has also been updated and developed:www.averiboieresti.ro .

Documentation activities consisted in one documentary trip to the Centre d'études des mondes russe, caucasien et centre-européen de la École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and Bibliothèque Interuniversitaire de la Sorbonne, in Paris, in August 30 to September 13, 2015. On this occasion I identified and photographed studies and books needed for the project, I got procured papers and I visited several museums (Louvre, Versailles, Orsay, Musée des Arts et Métiers) which hold artwork, household and ecclesiastical inventory and interior design specific for social elite of eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Exhibitions of those museums helped me to become familiar with a number of representative objects and material culture of the Romanian elites of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, which can be found listed in the inventories of wealth.

The scientific results of this phase of activity consisted in the publication of two books and two scientific studies and the drafting of three scientific paperspresented at national and international conferences.

Books published in 2015:

Dan Dumitru Iacob, editor, Avere, prestigiu și cultură materială în surse patrimoniale. Inventare de averi din secolele XVI–XIX [Wealth, prestige and material culture in the patrimonial sources. Inventories of assets in 16-19th centuries], Iași, Editura Universității „Alexandru Ioan Cuza” Iași, ISBN 978-606-714-154-2, 2015, 808 p.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, Elitele din principatele române în prima jumătate a secolului al XIX‑lea. Sociabilitate și divertisment [Romanian elite in the first half of the nineteenth century. Sociability and entertainment], Iași, Editura Universității „Alexandru Ioan Cuza”, 2015, 410 p., ISBN: 978-606-714-187-0.

Studies published in 2015:

Dan Dumitru Iacob, „Copii de boieri la pension. Educaţia în familia postelnicului Iancu Costache-Negel (1838–1861)” [Children of boyars at pension. Education in postelnic Iancu Costache Negel’s family (1838–1861)], în Educaţia publică şi condiţionările sale (secolele XIX–XX), coord. Cătălina Mihalache și Leonidas Rados, Iaşi, Editura Universităţii „Alexandru Ioan Cuza”, 2015, p. 145-195, ISBN: 978-606-714-176-4.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, „Testamentul și inventarul averii vistiernicesei Smaranda Balș (1833 / 1848)” [The last will and the fortune of Smaranda Bals (1833 / 1848)], în Dan Dumitru Iacob, ed., Avere, prestigiu și cultură materială în surse patrimoniale. Inventare de averi din secolele XVI–XIX, Iași, Editura Universității „Alexandru Ioan Cuza” Iași, 2015, p. 371-471, ISBN 978-606-714-154-2.

Participation at conferences in 2015:

Dan Dumitru Iacob, "The sale of a boyar fortune at auction in the mid-nineteenth century. Economic and social implications", paper work presented at the national conference "Goods, money and salaries. The history of prices and determinants of exchange values in the Romanian countries, in 16-19th centuries", organized by the University of Bucharest, Faculty of History, and Romanian Academy- Iasi Branch, Bucharest, 7 to 8 May 2015.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, "The library of Smaranda Bals reflected in the inventory of assets in 1848", paper presented at the annual meeting of the Department of History, Heritage and Protestant Theology of the "Lucian Blaga" University of Sibiu, 29 May 2015.

Dan Dumitru Iacob, "The Roznovanu Palace in Iasi in the mid-nineteenth century. The plans of court and building", paper presented at the International Symposium "The Monument - Tradition and Future", 17th edition, Iasi – Chisinau – Cernauti, 1 to 4 October 2015.

The scientific results of the project were also disseminated by posting some of them on the internet, through oral presentations at the conferences and visiting academic institutions, through distribution by donation of volumes published within the project to research institutions and libraries. The two volumes of the project will be presented at the book fair in Bucharest, on 18 November 2015, and at the annual symposium of the Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities in Sibiu, on 12 December 2015.

From a financial perspective, the budget for this period / year was in accordance with the needs of the project ant it was fully used.

In conclusion, we believe that the objectives set for the last phase of the project, for the year 2015, have been carried out.