The Salvetti Project

The Salvetti Project is a joint initiative between the EURONEWS Project and Stefano Villani, Professor of Early Modern History at the University of Maryland. The chief aim is to produce a digital edition of the correspondence of the Medici Residents to London from 1649 to 1660. These documents concern the diplomatic activities of Amerigo Salvetti, appointed as Medici Resident in 1618, and holder of that position until 1657. After his death, Amerigo’s son Giovanni Salvetti Antelminelli takes over until 1680.

This body of historical sources consist mainly of two types of text. First there are diplomatic dispatches, sent weekly to the Secretary of State of the Grand Duke of Tuscany. Private and diplomatic topics are reported and discussed, such as issues involving ceremonials, commercial and legal affairs etc. The second type consists of the manuscript newsletters known in Italian as “avvisi”. Unlike the dispatches, avvisi have a purely informational function. Written in the third person and unsigned, they offer a broader view, addressing not only the world of the court but also English society of the time.

Covering a period of more than sixty years of English history, the Salvetti correspondence represents a treasure trove not only for scholars of diplomatic, political, religious, and cultural history of the Stuart and Restoration period, but also for those studying the relations between England and and Europe, in particular, the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

The documents are of intrinsic interest to the EURONEWS project (P.I. Brendan Dooley) funded by the Irish Research Council and hosted by University College Cork in collaboration with the Medici Archive project. Indeed, the special perspective on the British Isles, seen from the vantage point of a London observer, illuminates much regarding English, Scots and Irish history in one of the crucial periods of rebellion, resistance and civil war.

The EURONEWS project intends eventually to publish all the Salvetti newsletters in digital form, and considerable progress has already been made on the total of fifteen volumes in the Mediceo del Principato (MdP) collection at the Archivio di Stato.  So far our full transcriptions are now available via the digital platform of the Medici Archive Project ( from volumes 4201,4202, 4203, 4204 , covering the years 1641 to 1660.

A new collaboration with Prof. Stefano Villani (University of Maryland) significantly aids in the digital publication of this extraordinary historical corpus. Prof. Villani’s transcription of newsletters and other correspondence sent to the Grand Duke of Tuscany and his Secretary by the Salvetti, comprising some 1773 documents in all, was included as an appendix to his Ph.D. thesis on the seventeenth-century Italian perception of the English civil wars and the Interregnum. 

The newly inaugurated EURONEWS Salvetti Project is now making available the relevant transcriptions of the handwritten newsletters produced by Prof. Villani (approximately 500 documents), fully edited, on the MIA platform along with the respective images. A team of junior fellows, recruited within the EURONEWS Internship program and coordinated by Dr. Davide Boerio, is currently at work uploading images, proofreading transcriptions and adding metadata regarding persons, places, and topics, along with brief synopses.  All the texts are encoded in XML, allowing in-depth analysis and interpretation of this extraordinary historical documentation.

The Salvetti Project intends to offer a wide audience of specialists and practitioners direct access to historical sources with the aim of creating an inclusive and diverse forum for discussion on one of the most interesting moments of European history. A lecture series by EURONEWS Project members will be offered in collaboration with associated scholars and leading experts in the various relevant fields.  A digital online exhibition will feature the research results derived from a detailed analysis of the documents, along with a full contextualization of the source.

Graduate students as well as undergraduates in relevant fields and courses are invited to participate in the Internship program, where the study experience ranges from paleography to Digital Humanities, from political history to religious history.

For information on Internship program visit the dedicated page on this website.

To find out more or to get involved in the project please email

Credits: Nikhat Ara, Miriam Campopiano, Federica D’Augelli, Enrico De Prisco, Wouter Kreuze, Davide Limatola, Alba Malcangi, Sara Mansutti, Simona Monaco, Antonello Mori, Gabor Mihaly Toth, Silvia Villafranca.