The Janus Intertextuality Search Engine

Link to Janus

NB: Since August 2013 the entire edited text of the Manipulus florum has been available for searching with Janus.

The Janus search engine, which was launched on this website in November 2008, was created and has been maintained by Andrew Kane, a doctoral student working under the supervision of Dr. Frank Tompa of the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. The design of this search engine was inspired by the online anti-plagiarism service Unlike a typical search engine which only allows users to search for a few words or a phrase, Janus allows users to paste long passages or entire texts into the search field in order to generate an intertextuality report, similar to the "originality report" produced by Because the Manipulus florum was employed by late medieval and early modern authors as a resource for finding authoritative quotations that could be incorporated into their own compositions, this type of search engine is ideally suited for the use of scholars who want to determine its reception in later texts. It should also expedite their own editorial work by quickly identifying some of the sources, whether they are cited as such or not, that are embedded in the text they are studying, because each "hit" on the intertextuality report is linked to the fons/fontes apparatus document for that entry in the Manipulus.

Users are invited to test how Janus works by copying and pasting a sample text into the Janus search window in order to generate an intertextuality report. The text, provided in MSWord, is a transcription of the first chapter of the Lucula noctis by Giovannni Dominici (early 15th c.) from the critical edition of Edmund Hunt (1940). The report will demonstrate Dominici's use of the Manipulus florum as his intermediate source for three quotations in this short chapter (Philosophia h, Sapiencia uel sciencia ap and Sapiencia uel sciencia ar), and his possible use of a fourth quotation (Regimen siue regere p). Two additional hits (#5 and #6 on the intertextuality report) are coincidental. A revised edition of Hunt's critical edition that highlights the author's reception of the Manipulus florum is provided on the editor's Lucula noctis Project website.

For more information on the search engine and its utility for scholarship, see the technical report by Kane and Tompa and the editor's article:

- Andrew Kane & Frank Tompa (2011). "Janus: the Intertextuality Search Engine for the Electronic
Manipulus florum Project," Literary and Linguistic Computing 26.4, 407-15.

- Chris L. Nighman (2011). "The Janus Intertextuality Search Engine: A Research Tool of (and for) the Electronic
Manipulus florum Project," Digital Medievalist 7 (

For an Open Source intertextuality search engine that allows users to upload two different texts for comparative analysis, see Factotum, developed in 2010 by a team of medieval scholars and computer scientists at Monash University in Australia.