Types of Sources
Understanding the Sources
The Study of Documents
The Study of Seals
Sources and the Characteristics Particular to their Genre
We compare sources with each other because they both have things in common and differences. If we relate these to each other in our analysis, the issue that we are examining can usually be better understood, and in a more nuanced way, from an 'overarching' or 'superordinate perspective'. (Film: Comparative European History).
Hans Werner Goetz distinguished four possible starting points for a comparison of sources , die für den Historiker jeweils andere Konsequenzen mit sich bringen.
Let's apply the method of comparison by confronting the depiction of Henry's trip to Canossa in the Augsburg Year-Books once again with the depiction in the Chronicle of Lampert.
According to Lampert's version, which is considered by scholars to be that of an opponent of the king, Henry was received with honour in Italy before the events at Canossa. The passage in the Year-Books that refers to Henry's reception might not refer at all to his reception by the pope, but of his reception by the princes - a further argument to separate the sentence into two parts. The depictions in these two sources seem at first glance to contradict each other. But these two sources might actually be able to help explain each other.