The Digital Encyclopedia of British Sociability in the Long Eighteenth Century

Explore the wide range of topics related to British sociability from 1650 to 1850 and discover how the circulation of models of sociability shaped European and colonial societies.

The Project

An innovative tool and an interdisciplinary approach

  • An open-access digital encyclopedia with a multi-modal search engine
  • An international and interdisciplinary project led by the GIS Sociabilités / Sociability since 2017
  • An EU-funded project (Horizon 2020-MSCA-RISE) since 2019, promoting staff exchange and intersectoral collaborations
  • A digital humanities project managed by an experienced editorial team
  • Encyclopedia entries written in English or French by eighteenth-century scholars in various fields (history, art history, literature, philosophy, material culture, linguistics ...) and reviewed by a dedicated committee
  • A complementary anthology of texts related to various aspects of sociability and connected to the entries

Find out more

Bringing academic research on eighteenth-century sociability to a wider audience

  • Explore the wide range of topics related to British Sociability from 1650 to 1850 and learn about the circulation of models of sociability that shaped European and colonial societies.
  • Discover the collaborative work between academic researchers on primary source material in their respective fields of expertise
  • Browse through 200 entries enriched with illustrations, hyperlinks, footnotes and further reading suggestions
  • Search by keywords, by alphabetical order or by categories (People, Places, Practices, Concepts, Objects) and sub-categories
  • Navigate easily through a dynamic and updatable resource
  • Share content with online media and social networks

Latest entries

Places Practices

Scriblerus Club

DOMSCH Sebastian
The Scriblerus Club lasted only for less than a year, starting in the spring of 1714, and ending in November of that same year, but the ‘Scriblerian spirit’ that was developed in these few meetings never left their participants. The club consisted of Jonathan Swift, Alexander Pope, John Arbuthnot, John Gay, and Thomas Parnell, as well as Robert Harley, then the secretary of the treasurer. Working collaboratively, the group created the persona of Martinus Scriblerus, through whose writings they wanted to accomplish their satirical aims.

Francis Dashwood

A well-travelled man, Francis Dashwood, 11th Baron le Despencer, was a founding member of the Dilettanti and the Divan Club, and a vital contributor to the proliferation of neo-classicism in eighteenth-century London. He is best known for inciting the lurid imagination of Grub Street through the creation of the Brotherhood of St. Francis, a secret society which has since come to be known as the Hell-fire Club.
People Practices
Places People

Hell-fire Clubs

The eighteenth century saw a proliferation of so-called Hell-fire Clubs, the members of which were invariably accused by society of promoting heavy drinking, sexual license, blasphemy, and Satanism, even if reality differed considerably from club to club.


As part of its H2020 programme (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions – Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (MSCA-RISE-2018)), the European Commission has granted significant financial support to DIGITENS, the flagship project of the Scientific Interest Grouping (GIS) “Sociabilités/Sociability”.


Latest News

DIGITENS closing conference: Sociabilities on the Move in the Long Eighteenth Century (1650-1850)

December 8th 2022
International conference organized by the GIS Sociabilités/Sociability and the research center HCTI in the framework of the H2020 DIGITENS project. Brest, 8 - 9 December 2022

Sports and Sociability in the Long Eighteenth Century

October 13th 2022
International conference organized by Caroline Bertonèche (Université Grenoble Alpes) and Alexis Tadié (Sorbonne University) in the framework of the H2020 DIGITENS project. Sorbonne Université, 13-14 October 2022.

Levantine Sociabilities in Europe in Giacomo Casanova’s time: Spies, Impostors, Courtesans and Men of Culture

September 22nd 2022
International conference organized within the framework of the EU project DIGITENS and in partnership with the GIS SOCIABILITÉS/SOCIABILITY Chieti-Pescara (Italy), 22 & 23 September, 2022