Events | 21. Feb. 2019

200 years MGH: Bicentennial celebrations in Berlin, 15 February 2019

After the jubilee celebrations in Vienna in commemoration of the founding of the MGH 200 years ago, the bicentennial was now also celebrated at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences (BBAW) in Berlin. The German capital was not only the seat of the MGH for over 100 years up to the end of the Second World War, but also provided the Monumenta with editorial know-how for their standard-setting editions through the Prussian Akademie der Wissenschaften, particularly under the influence of Theodor Mommsen's reforms. Today the Academy cooperates with the MGH to edit the series "Constitutiones". The jubilee celebration and the keynote speech by MGH president Martina Hartmann in the academy building at the Gendarmenmarkt in Berlin attracted much attention. The auditorium was full to the last seats -some additional seats were even brought to accommodate the audience - and the public sender Deutschlandfunk Kultur broadcasted a report on the event. The celebration began with opening words by Wolfgang Neugebaur speaking for the Presidium BBAW and Bernhard Jussen as speaker of the academy's Centre of Medieval Studies. After an introduction by Michael Menzel, head of the project and Berlin branch of the MGH, president Hartmann held a keynote speech with the title "'Es musste ein neuer Anfang gemacht werden, im Weltbild und in der Arbeit.' Die Monumenta Germaniae Historica in Berlin vom Zweiten Weltkrieg bis nach der Wende." Dealing with the reorientation of the MGH after the Second World War, the speech picked up the train of Wolfgang Neugebauer's interesting historical reflections on the history of the MGH during the 19th century and underlined in particular the role of the ideals and enthusiasm of the editors themselves in editing source material. During the ensuing reception, lively discussions took up aspects of the speech, considering the ups and downs of projects as experienced at the MGH branch in Berlin and reflecting on how the MGH should best confront the challenges of a changing world.