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Across Europe: Educational Travelling of German Noblemen in a Comparative Perspective

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In recent years, cultural historians interested in the Grand Tour have written divided histories focusing on travelers from one particular nation or region. Drawing from what these researchers report on educational traveling as well as from primary sources, it is now possible to put the Grand Tour into a European perspective. As to travelers from Germany, there is a wide scope of source material at hand, comprising funeral sermons, university rolls, travelogues, travel accounts, and correspondence. As a comparative perspective clearly reveals, educational travelling was vital in shaping the identity of gentlemanly travelers. Though starting out as a transnational social practice common to most aristocrats from northern and eastern Europe and to a lesser degree also to the nobilities from Romance countries, it contributed to sharpen notions of “the own” and “the other” towards the end of the Early Modern Period.

Affiliations: 1: Geheimes Staatsarchiv Preussischer Kulturbesitz Berlin


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