Digital Humanities: Digital Humanities Implementation Grants

Period of Performance

1/1/2016 - 6/30/2021

Funding Totals

$324,135.00 (approved)
$323,738.41 (awarded)

Acoustic Modeling in Historical Research

FAIN: HK-230924-15

North Carolina State University (Raleigh, NC 27607)
John N. Wall (Project Director: February 2015 to January 2022)
David Brian Hill (Co Project Director: July 2015 to January 2022)
Yun Jing (Co Project Director: July 2015 to January 2022)

Further work on a three-dimensional, immersive model of the visual and aural environment of St. Paul's Cathedral and Churchyard as they stood in London during the early 17th century. The project would also further develop and publicly release open-source software for the modeling and representation of sound in historic spaces.

Our objective is to develop an open-source software package for use in modeling the acoustic properties of historic spaces. This software will be based on the currently available open-source program i-Simpa (, which utilizes ray-tracing for acoustic propagation modeling. We will add capabilities for auralization and play-back which are essential for us to understand how sound behaves in virtual models of historic spaces. When used in conjunction with recordings of sound made under anechoic conditions, we will be able to experience recreated performances of historic events as they unfold, in real time, in highly accurate virtual models of the spaces in which they originally happened.

Media Coverage

Virtual Paul’s Cross Project: A Digital Recreation of John Donne’s Gunpowder Day Sermon (Review)
Author(s): Brent Nelson
Publication: Early Modern Digital Review
Date: 10/7/2019
Abstract: This is a review of Virtual Paul’s Cross Project: A Digital Recreation of John Donne’s Gunpowder Day Sermon.

Recreating the Sights and Sounds of 17th Century London (Media Coverage)
Author(s): Matt Shipman
Publication: NC State University News Service
Date: 10/5/2021
Abstract: News release from NC State University announcing the completion of the Virtual Cathedral Project

Associated Products

Virtual St. Paul's Cathedral Project (Web Resource)
Title: Virtual St. Paul's Cathedral Project
Author: John N. Wall
Author: David Brian Hill
Author: Yun Jing
Abstract: The Virtual St Paul’s Cathedral Project enables visitors to experience worship and preaching at St Paul’s Cathedral and in Paul’s Churchyard as events that unfold over time and on particular occasions in London in the early seventeenth century. This site will host a visual model of St Paul’s Cathedral and the surrounding churchyard, together with a recreation of worship for Easter Sunday 1624, with all the liturgical events of the day, including choir and organ music plus a sermon in the morning by Bishop Lancelot Andrewes and a sermon in the afternoon by John Donne, Dean of the cathedral.
Year: 2015
Primary URL:
Primary URL Description: Web site for Virtual St. Paul's Cathedral Project


John Donne Society’s Award for Distinguished Publication in Digital Media
Date: 1/1/2014
Organization: John Donne Society