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Why Use Reference Works?
Specialized reference works such as encyclopedias provide overviews and can give you a good sense of what's out there and what different approaches are being taken to a given topic. Most of our reference sources are located in the Reference Collection on the main floor of the library. Some are available online.
Futuh al-Haramayn, Muhi al-din Lari, A.D. 1678, Metropolitan Museum of Art
Dictionary of Art - Ref N 31 .D5 1996
An exhaustive encyclopedia of world art, containing articles written by scholars on artists, movements, works, and subjects, each followed by a selective bibliography.
Encyclopedia of Comparative Iconography: Themes Depicted in Works of Art - Ref N 7560 .E53 1998
The purpose of this interesting work is to show how fundamental cultural narratives and themes have been represented in the arts. Includes both stories and general themes such as abandonment, envy, and ecstasy. Each essay ends with lists of works that employ the theme and selected secondary sources. There are 7 indexes to enable seeking out names, Biblical themes, literary references, mythological references, etc.
Grove Encyclopedia of Islamic Art and Architecture - Ref N 6260 .G75 2009 (3 vols.)
Presents over 1,000 entries on Islamic art and architecture. Includes bibliographies.
Islamic Art and Architecture 650-1250 - Library Oversize N6260 .E79 2001
Overview of art and architecture from the origins of the culture until the early Middle Ages.
Medieval Art: A Topical Dictionary - Ref N 7850 .R67 1996
Covers early Christian and Byzantine topics.
Barcelona Haggadah, 1360-1390, British Library
Anchor Bible Dictionary - Ref BS 440 .A54 (6 vol)
This definitive and current work covers not only names, places, and events of the Bible, but also includes cultural history, social institutions, archeological sites, and other topics of particular interest to Biblical scholars today.
Encyclopaedia Judaica - Ref DS 102.8 .E496 2007
An excellent source for information on the Jewish people and religion, offering scholarly and in-depth articles, recently updated to include current research on historical and contemporary topics.
Encyclopedia of Early Christianity - Ref BR 162.2 .E53 1990
Focusing on the early years of the Christian Church, this handbook is a good place to find short discussions of people, places, topics, and texts.
Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World - Ref BP 40 .E525 2004
Provides an overview of individuals, concepts, and topics related to Islam.
Encyclopedia of Religion - Ref BL 31 .E46 2005
Covers religions from around the world and through history as well as people and ideas related to religion. The articles are written by experts in their fields and include excellent bibliographies. This new edition includes hundreds of new articles, thoroughly revised coverage of all topics in religion, and a handful of "visual essays" that illustrate visual culture as a significant aspect of religion.
Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World - Ref DS 35.53 .O96 2009
Deals with all aspects of Islam throughout the world.
Plaque with the Pentecost, ca. 1150–75, Netherlandish, The Cloisters, Metropolitan Museum of Art
Cambridge History of Christianity - Ref BR 141 .C36 2006
A detailed chronological overview of the history of Christianity, including social, political, and regional aspects as well as theological. The chapters are written by experts in each topic area covered.
Dictionary of the Middle Ages - Ref D 114 .D5 1982
13 vols. A scholarly, readable, and beautifully laid-out encyclopedia covering people, events, ideas, movements, texts, and cultural features of the medieval world. Articles are often illustrated with period art work and are followed by bibliographies of primary and secondary sources.
Encyclopedia of Jewish History: events and eras of the Jewish people - Ref DS 118 .E465 1986b
An overview of Jewish heritage including important events and timelines in Jewish history.
Medieval Iberia: An Encyclopedia - Ref DP99 .M33 2003
Includes 800+ articles on people, events, works, institutions, and topics related to the territories of present-day Spain and Portugal from 470-1500. Emphasis is on history, literature, language, religion, science, folklore and the arts. Each entry is followed by a brief bibliography.
Medieval Italy: An Encyclopedia - Ref DG 443 .M43 2004
Offers brief definitions and longer essays about cities, institutions, families, people, and concepts important to Italian medieval history. Other similar volumes cover medieval France, Ireland, Iberia, and Scandinavia.
Medieval Jewish Civilization - Ref DS 124 .M386 2003
Contains detailed entries on all aspects of medieval Jewish civilization.
New Cambridge Medieval History - Ref D 117 .N48 1995
A comprehensive history of Europe from 500 to 1500 AD.
Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium - Ref DF 521 .O93 1991
A three-volume work that offers brief scholarly articles on people, places, monuments, and topics related to Byzantium.
Oxford Dictionary of the Middle Ages - Ref D114 .O94 2010
This four-volume set offers concise articles on people, places, and events as well as substantial essays on broad topics such as art and architecture, medicine, agricultural technology, etc. Bibliographies
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