Diversity, survival and bias. Estimating the loss of medieval texts and text carriers using methods from ecodiversity
One of the major hurdles in the scientific study of human cultures in the past is the historic loss of sources. Estimates as to the scope and nature of the original population of medieval literature serve an important role in medieval studies. We apply innovative statistical models from the field of ecodiversity to gauge how much of the material specimens might have been lost. Our case study is that of Middle Dutch chivalric epics and considers both text and manuscript loss.