Skip to content
German Drama Corpus
Branch: master
Clone or download
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.
Type Name Latest commit message Commit time
Failed to load latest commit information.


Corpus Description

This is the German Drama Corpus (GerDraCor), a collection of TEI-P5-encoded German-language plays from 1730 to the 1940s. The corpus is released under the Creative Commons Zero copyright waiver (CC0).

If you want to cite the corpus, please use this publication:

  • Frank Fischer, Ingo Börner, Mathias Göbel, Angelika Hechtl, Christopher Kittel, Carsten Milling and Peer Trilcke (2019): Programmable Corpora. Die digitale Literaturwissenschaft zwischen Forschung und Infrastruktur am Beispiel von DraCor. DHd 2019. Digital Humanities: multimedial & multimodal. Konferenzabstracts, pp. 194–197. DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.2596094.

We started to build the corpus by extracting all plays from TextGrid Repository (TGRep). The source for the versions in TGRep was's text collection. However, TGRep's conversion from's proprietary XML to TEI caused some bugs and inconsistencies which we fixed for GerDraCor in a longer process between 2017 and 2019. All our fixes including enhancements are documented on GerDraCor's Wiki. After this clean-up process, GerDraCor is now in a position to grow by taking on new plays from sources such as Deutsches Textarchiv, Gutenberg-DE or Wikisource.

GerDraCor is an autonomous corpus and will be maintained independently. Yet it is also integrated into the website, the showcase for our newly introduced "Programmable Corpora" concept.

If you just want to download the corpus in its current state in XML-TEI, do this:

svn export


An easy way to download the network data (instead of the actual TEI files) is to use our API (documentation here). If you have jq installed, it would work like this:

for play in `curl '' | jq -r ".dramas[] .name"`; do
    wget -O "$play".csv"$play"/networkdata/csv

The API info page is at It also tells you which version of eXist-db we're running on

Simple Visualisation with R

To take a first look at the distribution of the number of speakers per play over time, you could feed the metadata table into R:

gerdracor <- fread("")
ggplot(gerdracor[], aes(x = year, y = numOfSpeakers)) + geom_point()


number of speakers per play over time

Here is a barplot showing the number of plays per decade:

number of speakers per play over time

A Bit of History

Until we rebuilt our working corpus under its new name GerDraCor, we've been working with an intermediary format to conduct our research. This format only held structural information, not the texts themselves. Back then, our research group called itself DLINA (digitally-enabled literary network analysis). Since our focus broadened, we stopped using this name. Our future endeavours will sail under the Programmable Corpora flag.

(README last updated on May 21, 2019.)

You can’t perform that action at this time.