Out of a comparison of the realia with the marginalia, a remarkable conclusion
can be drawn. In table 1, the amount of references found under each year in the
realia and marginalia are shown for the years 1737-1739 and 1741-1750.
From this table, it becomes clear that the realia only had 6,54 to 8,18% coverage
of the resolutions in the years 173 7-1742. In the years 1743-17 50 this is 15,02
to 18,12%, with peaks numbers of 29,21% and 26,61% in the years 1745 and
174 6.43 The increase of coverage after 1743 is caused by a significant decrease in
the amount of references in the marginalia. The changed manner of registration
in those years is the background of this change. From 1743 onwards, the
Generale Secretarye separated the besognes from the generale resolutions. The
besognes are the deliberations of the Hoge Regering on the outposts of the
Company. Why they decided to separate them in the year Gustaaf Willem Van
Imhoff became governor-general in Batavia, is not yet known. Prior to 1743 they
also existed, but were combined with the generale resoluties. After these separate
series were introduced in 1743, in the realia distinctions are made between
besognes and generale resolutions (marked with B' or'R'). In table 1, the
amounts of references in the marginalia and realia over the years 1737-1742 are
combined on the besognes and generale resolutions. Over the years 1743-17 5 0
they are only on the generale resolutions. Nevertheless, the poor coverage on the
resolutions shows that the realist made a selection out of all available resolutions.
Thus, not all decisions of the Hoge Regering are represented in the realia and,
hereby, not all the documents underlying the resolutions.
This is an important conclusion not only for this research, but for all research
of the archive of the Hoge Regering via the realia. It has yet to be investigated
how often historians and other researchers of the archive use the realia. Given
its nature, however, the realia are an important research tool. Indeed, because
the Hoge Regering applied the resolution system, theoretically the whole archive
is covered via those indices. Therefore the realia are probably used frequently.
The poor coverage of the resolutions via the realia affects all these researches,
since for every research the question rises which decisions the realist selected
and which he did not. If not all decisions are represented via the realia, it is
not unlikely that relevant documents were and are overlooked in (historical)
research. Moreover, it seems that the administration used multiple copies of
realia at the same time. This follows from the inventory of the archive, in which
more than one copy can be found for each period of the realia. For instance,
seven (fragments of) realia are available for the period 1721-1740, three for
1721-1748, one for 1741-1748, two for 1741-1758, two for 1741-1760, and one
copy is available for the years 1749-17 5 8. To use several copies of realia at the
same time the administration had to overwrite realia. This, however, was not
always done correctly. Slips of the pen therefore appear in most of the realia.44
Most remarkable though is one realia on the period 1741-1748. This realia
significantly differs from the others, both in the amount of used references and
COLONIAL LEGACY IN SOUTH EAST ASIA -
THE DUTCH ARCHIVES
43 The row 'amount in marginalia' in this table is based on an estimate. The references of the first five pages
of every quarter were counted, and multiplied with an estimated total amount of pages of the marginalia.
Because some references in the realia are double (inserted under multiple subject headings), actual cover
age is even lower. In the years 1745 and 1746, coverage increases because the amount of references in the
realia is significantly higher.