Refashioning the Renaissance Database

Popular Groups and the Material and Cultural Significance of Clothing in Europe 1550–1650

How to use this database

All data has been recorded in the original language. For the purposes of the database, all terms have been labelled and subsequently organized according to their corresponding English terms. For more information on how contemporary Italian and Danish terms were categorized into English, please see our Technical Glossary of Terms.

Searches in the Refashioning the Renaissance database can be conducted via:


To conduct a search, simply enter a keyword into the search box and click ‘update’.

Please note that all words or phrases that have not been assigned corresponding categories in English will need to be searched in the original language. For assistance in identifying original language terms, please consult the glossary located to the right of the keyword search box. To view the description as it appeared in the inventory along with your results, tick the box labeled “include descriptive text in search.” Results can be filtered using time period and/or location.

Object Category

Users can search by Object Category using the list of pre-defined terms found in the drop-down menu. Options include accessories, arms, clothing, grooming items, jewellery, textile tools, textiles, and trimmings.

After the primary category has been selected, searches can be further refined using the Boolean operators “AND” or “WITH,” along with a variety of pre-defined subcategories, including object type, material, technique, colour finishing, condition, and/or the type of person who used the item.

Occupation of Inventory Owners

Information can also be categorized using the professions of inventory owners, in addition to their geography and/or gender.

Document Source

Lastly, users can sort by document source, specifying the desired type of inventory (dowry, post-mortem, debts) sought.

Results – Table or Chart

Once the results have been retrieved, data can be viewed as a Table or Chart. For Tables, fields of information can be adjusted via the “Add Columns” button, allowing users to view and/or hide certain subcategories of data.

Under the Charts tab, results can be visualized in both vertical and horizontal bar charts. This data can be additionally modified by decade, object type, colour, textile, technique, finishing, condition, occupation, and/or town.

Results – Further information

The list of results can also be utilized to retrieve further information about individual objects and their contexts. Simply click on the item to view information about its owner and other items of clothing listed in the inventory. In most cases, the page also includes photographs of the original document.