Corpus of South Arabian Inscriptions

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The Corpus of South Arabian Inscriptions website pulls together South Arabian epigraphic material, catalogued and encoded through an XML standard model. The CSAI system is a computer-based archive comprising over 6,000 inscriptions classified according to the pertinent South Arabian language.
The database has several search fields. Scholars and experts can analyse the material through predefined indices (index of inscriptions, word lists, index of iconographic elements) or by performing simple or combined searches within the texts or into groups of them.
The CSAI project began in 1999 and the archive was set up in 2001 through the collaborative efforts of the Department of Historical Sciences of the Ancient World (University of Pisa) and SIGNUM – Computer Science Research Centre on Humanities (Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa).
Thanks to the detailed studies conducted by Alessandra Avanzini and Giovanni Mazzini, the Qatabanic, Marginal Qatabanic, and Awsanite inscriptions were the first to be inserted into the database, made available to the public in 2004. By then, the Hadramitic, the Minaic and the Marginal Minaic corpora were also catalogued. The Sabaic material is currently been uploaded and is largely available, divided and catalogued in accordance with the chronology traditionally adopted by specialists of Ancient South Arabian. Some texts written in minuscule writing are also included into the database. This corpus will be soon updated with the recently published material.
In 2008, the database was enriched with new corpora from the Ancient South Arabian collection of the British Museum and the inscriptions housed in some Yemeni Museums.
The CSAI software has also been applied to epigraphic corpora of other Semitic languages, including Phoenician and the inscriptions from Jordan.
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