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Basic archival terms

 

Archive groups (arisen through selection from documents created by activities of a certain natural person or legal entity) are the basic recorded units in the Czech management of archives. They split into archive fonds (arisen from documents collected by their originator’s activities) and archive collections (arisen by intentional collection-forming activity regardless of originator). For example the fonds of individual authorities, public administration bodies, courts of law, enterprises, organizations, associations and outstanding personalities belong among the fonds. Register collections, collections of maps and designs et al may serve as examples of the archive collection.

Finding aid: aid drafted for an archive group (groups) or parts thereof, serving for the needs of registration and orientation in their contents and extent.

Name of the archive group - based on the latest official or otherwise commonly used name of its originator, which need not always be the last name of the institution. It is of no account whether the fond documents date from the period when such name was not used yet. Older or other names of the originator are given in the item Originator of the fond (archive group) together with the period during which the name was used.

An exception is in fond names based on more appropriate and common identification of the originator comprising different phases of its development, often with a number of less used names (e.g. Cisterciáci Osek) [Cistercians Osek] and an ancillary collective name for the bodies of township and local administration and self-government until 1945: Archiv města (obce) [Archive of municipality (parish)] + nominative of the place-name /from 1945 until 1990 nevertheless the names Městský (Místní) národní výbor [Municipal (Local) national committee] + nominative of the place-name were used, after 1990 Městský (obecní) úřad [Municipal (Local) authority] + nominative of the place-name)/.

Archive fonds with identically sounding names are differentiated by Roman numerals, at that the older of both archive files is usually assigned numeral I. The numerals are written after the full name of the archive file.

The names of archive fonds are given in full wording except for obligatory used abbreviations. The methodology of fond names’ generation is specified in detail in General rules for allocation of archival fond and group names.

Groups of thematic registration are the terms specifying common traits of a certain type of archive groups. An archive group may be classified (a) under one or (b) more groups of thematic registration.

Place of origin of the fond (archive group): place-name is always given in nominative in the current official wording according to the latest valid lexicon of municipalities, at extinct localities according to the last official or otherwise known name regardless of the fact that the archived records date from the period when such place-name was not used yet. It may maximally contain 40 characters.

Originator of the fond (archive group): originator(s) name(s) is (are) given in the original language and wording and with the older or other originator’s name and period during which the name was used. Different honorary names, dedications etc. are also given here, if these were a part of the official originator’s name.

Time extent: time span of the archive records need not coincide with the years when the originator was active, as not all the documents have been preserved to date.

Time extent can generally have the form: (1450) 1560-1890 (1905)

  • Value 1450 is the anterior dating;
  • 1560 is the lower limit of the time extent of the fond (archive group);
  • 1890 is the upper limit of the time extent of the fond (archive group);
  • 1905 is the posterior dating.

The upper and the lower limits form so-called time extent proper of the fond (archive group), by which the search can be done. In the given case all values are precise (the values of the lower and upper time span limits are not in brackets, the anterior and posterior values are in round brackets). If any of the values is in square brackets, an estimate of the value is involved (e.g. the entry [1450]-1890 means that the lower limit is only estimated).

 

Priorum - document on the preceding action in this matter, retrieved and attached to the entry.
Posteriorum - additional document (subsequent document) to the already handled file. Retrieval is not possible according to the prior or posterior dates.

 

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