Searchable Texts

The Hedge Press Searchable Texts

Our freely available online texts each have a tailored search utility which enables you to pick out topics of interest, or to select a search term from the list of all significant words in the text:

  1. Read and explore the text of Anthony Ryle’s diary, written in his teenage years during the Second World War. The text here is the whole of the edited version published as Diary from the Edge 1940-1944: a wartime adolescence. The original diary in 4 volumes is in the Imperial War Museum Department of Documents – ‘Private Papers of A Ryle: Documents.24999’
  2. Read and explore the original statements of witnesses and accused women  recorded for the trial of Susan Swapper and Anne Taylor for witchcraft at Rye, Sussex, 1607-1609. The documents are at East Sussex Record Office: ‘Papers concerning the trial of Susannah Swapper and Ann Taylor for Witchcraft: RYE 13’. This case is the focus of our publication Rye Spirits, by Annabel Gregory.

Searching in the texts: the tools on this site.

Searching an online document normally requires you to choose some word or phrase you are interested in and to look for that one, so your search is limited by what you imagine to be in the text. A document can be explored in a different way, and more thoroughly, if you know what words are actually in it, or what topics – which may be expressed in a variety of words (as in the index to a book).

The search tools available for the texts presented here offer both these possibilities. You can browse through drop-down lists of the specific words present in them, and of the topics they contain, to get a detailed idea of their content. Using terms from these lists, you can explore them in a targeted way, following leads which they suggest. The tools are slightly different for each text, to suit the different vocabularies and variety of content in each.

Alternatively, you can simply read the texts page by page, or use your own choice of words in a free search.


Licence for these searchable texts.

Creative Commons Licence
Diary from the Edge, A wartime adolescence: the searchable text“, and “Documents from the Rye witchcraft trials, 1607-1609: the searchable text“, by The Hedge Press, London are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be requested at