Further Call for Encyclopaedia of Smell History and Heritage ‘Entries’

The sense of smell: a man lying in bed smells flowers as another lights some incense, above, a priest stands before a burning sacrifice of a lamb. Engraving after G. Collaert, 1630, after N. van der Horst. Credit: Wellcome Collection. Public Domain Mark.

One of the exciting outputs of the Odeuropa project will be a free, publicly-available, Encyclopaedia of Smell History and Heritage. This will be composed of ‘Entries’ written by smell-history, -culture, and -heritage experts and a series of ‘Storylines’ that explore the links between smells and key themes over time. 

In the first two years of the project, we have developed fantastic tools for identifying and collecting references to smell events in historical texts and images from the 1600s to the 1920s. We have gathered an extensive range of data available through our dedicated Smell Explorer

It has now got to the point where we are beginning to write Entries and Storylines for the Encyclopaedia using this wide-ranging, multi-lingual, material. We are therefore asking for expressions of interest in writing an Entry for the Encyclopaedia.  We are particularly looking for entries on smells (e.g gunpowder; civet; smog), smellscapes/places (e.g coffee-houses; gas-works; ships), noses/olfactory expertise (e.g apothecaries; sanitarians; artists), or smell-related objects (e.g pomanders, atomizers, wigs). Each entry can be between 1,000-5,000 words long and will also incorporate multiple images. 

We have an existing list of potential entries but are also open to ideas for entries based on researchers’ expertise and what they can find in our data. Whilst we are particularly interested in entries that cover the period 1600-1925 and that focus on Europe (so that they can make best use of our Smell Explorer data) we are also interested in other entries on non-European histories and those that focus on the mediaeval or more modern periods. If you have an idea and are unsure whether it fits – just get in touch on the email below to discuss it!

The projected deadline for all entries is the middle of September at the very latest, but we can be flexible if this proves difficult for authors.  The Encyclopaedia will be published online in late 2023 near the end of the Odeuropa project. If you are interested in writing for the Encyclopaedia then please email will.tullett@york.ac.uk, who can share a sample entry, an entry-writing form, and a list of suggested entries. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email him!