Graff-IT ERC Project
Graff-IT ERC Project

The ERC AdvGrant Graff-IT Project aims to develop a new interdisciplinary approach to the study of medieval and Renaissance Italian graffiti (7th – 16th century) as a historical source. Graffiti are meant here as a form of writing, sometimes mixed with figurative patterns, made on a surface not primarily designed for this purpose by means of an occasional tool, regardless of the technique used and beyond the writer’s dependency on an authority. In Italy, there are hundreds of monumental and natural sites preserving graffiti, most of which are still undeciphered or have been studied only marginally.

The Project, therefore, represents the first attempt to survey and investigate this immensely rich body of sources through the lens of Palaeography, with the overall goal to assert the full dignity of graffiti as written sources and integrate them into the realm of historiographical thought and practice. New in this Project is the idea of considering graffiti as but one part of their cultural context, and consequently as an essential component of the communication system of their time. Graffiti allow us to get access to the worldview of individuals in the past. This explains why the Graff-IT Project wants to examine graffiti in their multifaceted complexity (writing, image, language, and material aspects) and in relation to all kinds of written media within specific space-time and social-production frames. By doing so, it will be possible to shed more light on the nature and role of graffiti in medieval and early modern culture, thereby bringing into the focus of scholarly research a history of signs that claims its due place in the yet far too strict classification of historical sources.

This Project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No. 101020613).

News & Events

Lectures & Conferences

Graffiti as a Cultural Heritage

On Wednesday 22 march a guest lecture on the topic of Graffiti as a Cultural Heritage will be held by Prof.ssa Véronique Plesch (Colby College, Waterville, USA) at the University "G. D'Annunzio" of Chieti-Pescara, on invitation from Prof. Carlo Tedeschi, PI of the Graff-IT ERC-Project. The lecture will take place also online on Microsoft Teams. For more information and registration, please mail to:

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Graffiti dell’Umbria fra Medioevo ed Età Moderna

The first publication of the Graff-IT project has just been published! Congratulations to Francesca Malagnini, Carlo Tedeschi and Piero Trevisi

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