Belle de Zuylen’s correspondence online

23 November 2021 from 09:30 to 18:00 hrs
Utrecht, Academiegebouw Domplein
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At Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands, we are working on the digitization of the correspondence of Belle de Zuylen/Isabelle de Charrière.

The approx. 2600 letters are also provided with annotations, modernized spelling, and, more and more, translations. All this is done in collaboration with members of the Dutch Belle de Zuylen Association as crowdsourcers. For the translation, students of French (Nijmegen University) are participating. 

Remembering, this year 2021, Belle de Zuylen’s marriage taking place 250 years ago, as well as her leaving the country and installation in Colombier near Neuchâtel (Switzerland), provides an occasion for presenting a new part of these online letters: those that were sent from Utrecht, or where comments are to be found about 18th-century Utrecht, its inhabitants and remarkable streets or spots, such as the « Maliebaan », the bookshop where Belle de Zuylen used to buy her reading materials, the Utrecht fair with its famous waffles etc., and by extension letters which contain statements about the Netherlands, Dutch culture, characteristics of inhabitants etc. – a total of 764 letters.

More information

For the program, further information and inscriptions, see the website of Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands:


The symposium is being organized by Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands (KNAW, Amsterdam), the NEWW Working Group [New approaches to European Women’s Writing] of Huizinga Institute for research in cultural history, and Living Pasts and the Descartes Centre (each of them in Utrecht).

Huygens Institute for Netherlands History (Huygens ING)

The Huygens Institute for Netherlands History (Huygens ING) is an Academy research institute that studies the history of science, Dutch history and literature. Huygens ING extracts information from historical sources and literary texts, is building a digital infrastructure, and offers searchable online data. It provides an historical context for contemporary issues related to politics and governance, literature, science and society.

The Huygens Institute for Netherlands History (Huygens ING) is located in Amsterdam (Oudezijds Achterburgwal 185, 1012 DK Amsterdam).

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