Cataloguing in Calames

Go to Calames

A dedicated data model

The data Calames is encoded in the EAD-EncodingArchive Descriptionformat , version 2002.

Written and updated by the working group Calames, the EAD cataloguing manual, written in accordance with the recommendations of the "EAD in the Library" website, is available to professionals.

Before cataloguing in Calames, a training in EAD format is essential. Knowledge of the archival treatment of holdings is also a prerequisite. 


A common working tool

The institutions of the Calames network produce and publish their inventories of manuscripts and archives in a central database. They use a common interface from which any cataloguer can edit the files of his or her institution and view the EAD instances created by others.

The cataloguing tool Calames is based on a plugin of the XMetal editor. Enriched for the needs of the network, its graphic interface dispenses with the need to master XML syntax.

Different functionalities have been developed for : 

  • ensure catalog consistency: closed lists of attribute values
  • standardize index entries using authority Sudocrecords: interconnection to the application IdRef
  • control EAD files and export them in various forms

Participation in the network Calames is not conditioned by the amount of data produced. The workload involved in deploying in Calames depends mainly on :

  • the types of documents kept by each institution
  • of the volumes concerned
  • the desired depth of description


Network administration

Each institution deployed in the Calames network is identified by a CRR number Calames to which one or more access logins to the application are attached.

The number of XMetal licenses depends on the number of simultaneous accesses needed in each institution. This information is included in the Calames agreement signed between the institution andAbes when joining.