Eesti Rahvaluule Arhiiv (ERA)

The EFA was founded in 1927 by Oskar Loorits as the folklore archive of the Estonian National Museum (1909), and were based on the large collections of Jakob Hurt and Matthias Johann Eisen. The archive has had a network of correspondents since its beginnings. In the 1930s several folklore collection competitions were initiated and the systematic preservation of folklore of other nationalities in Estonia began. In 1940 the EFA was reorganised as the Folklore Department (FD) of the State Literary Museum. Large-scale sound recording projects were started in the 1950s in collaboration with Estonian Radio. The first films preserved by the EFA are from 1959. The video recordings date from the 1980s. In 1995 the archives regained their original name — the Estonian Folklore Archives.


The Estonian Folklore Archives include collections of manuscripts, photographs, multimedia, and sound and video recordings, covering all aspects of folklore, including the folklore of other nationalities in Estonia, as well as rare Finno-Ugric folklore. The collections were formed by Estophils from the 18th–19th centuries, as well as by various societies, correspondents and researchers. The oldest recordings are paper manuscripts and sound recorded on wax cylinders, while the newest material is often in digital form. A part of every collection mentioned is in digital form either digitized through a project or collected digitally to start with.


Homepage in Estonian:

Homepage in English:

Digital repository KIVIKE:

Runosong database:


Vanemuise Str. 42, Tartu 51003, Estonia

Open: M–F 9.00–17.00

Phone: +372 7377 730; Fax: +372 7377 706

E-mail: era(at)