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The aim of this paper is to report the research results of an ongoing project that deals with the exploitation of a digital archive of drawings and illustrations of historic documents for research and educational purposes. According to the results on a study of user requirements, we have designed tools to provide researchers with innovative ways for accessing the digital manuscripts, sharing, and transferring knowledge in a collaborative environment. We have found that the results of scientific research on the relationships between images of manuscripts produced over the centuries can be rendered explicit by using annotations. The methodology has been implemented by a prototype system that is currently used by researchers in the field of illuminated manuscripts.