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Dr Arkadiy Avdokhin secures funding for a major joint Russian-Austrian research project

On 26 March 2021, it was announced that Dr Arkadiy Avdokhin, Associate Professor at the Institute for Oriental and Classical Studies, Senior research fellow at the Centre for Medieval Studies, HSE University, was successful in his application for a research grant to fund a 4-year Russian-Austrian project on pilgrims’ inscriptions in Byzantium and Old Rus’. The project has received funding from the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR) and the Austrian science fund (FWF Der Wissensсhaftsfond).

Dr Arkadiy Avdokhin secures funding for a major joint Russian-Austrian research project

© Alexey Gippius & Yuri Artamonov

The research project “Epigraphies of Pious Travel: Pilgrims’ Inscriptions, Mobility, and Devotion in Byzantium and Rus', 5th–15th centuries AD” will be based at the Institute for Oriental and Classical Studies, HSE University (Moscow), and the Institute for Medieval Studies, Austrian Academy of Sciences (Vienna). The Russian and Austrian teams, led by the two PIs Dr Avdohin and Dr Andreas Rhoby, will closely cooperate in their pursuit of a joint research agenda. On the Russian team are: Dr Andrey Vinogradov, Dr Alexey Gippius, Dr Yuri Artamonov, Yuri Svoyski and Yuri Shakhov (tech experts). On the Austrian team, alongside Dr Rhoby, is Rachael Barnes, currently at the University of Birmingham but joining the Vienna-based project soon.

The project will look at Greek and Old Russian inscriptions by pilgrims in Byzantium and Russian lands as a window onto religious mobility and self‑identity of pious travellers. An interactive database is to be constructed in the course of the project that will host the corpus of inscriptions, complete with translation, commentary, and hi‑res images (many of them laser-scanned to produce 3D‑images). The database will allow researchers around the world to easily search and browse the epigraphic data, and to visualize pilgrimage centres and routes using the OpenAtlas framework.

The project is among other twenty to have received funding within this prestigious international scheme, and one out of only three Humanities projects to be funded.

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