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Shadows of Empires

Welcome to Shadows of Empires, a digital historical mapping platform covering the transient nature of modern Europe’s political borders since the late 18th century. The platform allows the user to explore, compare, and contrast territorial definitions, imaginations and wartime arrangements of the various European states and the shifting nature of their borders.

Ever wondered how the borders of your country changed over time? What about the intellectual concepts that served to define its territory and how they corresponded with any relevant projects conceived by national elites in neighbouring states? Perhaps you are curious to know what wartime political entities existed on your country’sterritory and their political allegiances? This digital project is designed to help you discover the history of modern Europe through these sorts of geographical and political changes. We invite you to explore the results of the first stage of our project and learn more about Eastern and South-Eastern Europe.

Simply pick a country and start your journey through time and space, add layers for other countries and political entities while also contrasting the officialy established borders with those approved by international treaties, conceived by intellectuals or nationalist activists, and the various short-term forms of statehood. Or simply scroll through the maps of Europe to see how the political map of the continent has changed over the centruries. Refer to our user guide to learn more about how to use our mapping platform, or get in touch with us if you have any feedback on our work.

Shadows of Empires project team