There are no archives of interest for medievalists in Bosnia and Herzegovina since most records from the Middle Ages have been destroyed, removed or lost after the Ottoman conquest in 1463. The main archives for the study of medieval Bosnian history are to be found in the Croatian State archives of Dubrovnik and Zadar. Some documents are also kept in the Hungarian national archives and the Archives of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts, while the Archives of the Serb Academy of Sciences and Arts in Belgrade also keep copies of documents important for the research of medieval Bosnian history.
Due to the intensive contacts which the medieval Bosnian state and Kingdom (from 1377) had with the commune of Ragusa (Dubrovnik), and due to the fact that Dubrovnik has been spared from many wars and destruction in history, more documents about medieval Bosnian history have been preserved in Dubrovnik than Bosnia itself. The State archives of Dubrovnik hold the oldest known charter of a Bosnian ruler – this is the charter of Kulin ban from 1189 – and charters of almost all rulers which governed Bosnia until the state’s demise in 1463. This collection is kept in the Diplomata et Acta series and numbers around 80 different charters and letters, mainly concerning trade issues and economical matters, of which some are written in Latin, and others in old Slavonic script. Some have seals attached and represent fine examples of medieval diplomatics and palaeography. This collection is not only confined to the rulers of Bosnia, but it also contains charters and letters of the Bosnian nobility which ruled the areas in the hinterland of Dubrovnik. Without these important documents our knowledge about the history of medieval Bosnia would be very limited.