Skip to main content
Medieval Studies Reference Sources: A Selected List
Table of Contents:

Basic Guides
  • Reference sources in history
    Add to e-Shelf Reference sources in history : an introductory guide Ronald H. Fritze 1951- Brian E Coutts; Louis Andrew Vyhnanek 2nd ed.. Santa Barbara, Calif. : ABC-CLIO ©2004 Available at TC Wilson Library Reference (D20 .F75 2004 )
    • Location(s): WILSON Reference D20 .F75 2004
  • Guide To Reference Books
    11th Ed. Chicago: American Library Association, 1996. 2,020p.
    A bibliography of reference sources in many disciplines. Check MNCAT for newer editions of titles that look useful.
    • Location(s): Wilson Quarto Z1035.1 .G89 1996
  • Bibliographies of Bibliographies
    • World Bibliography of Bibliographies
      Supplement information: A world bibliography of bibliographies, 1964-1974 : a list of works represented by Library of Congress printed catalog cards : a decennial supplement to Theodore Besterman, A world bibliography of bibliographies / compiled by Alice F. Toomey ; with a foreword by Francesco Cordasco. Location: Wilson Library Quarto Z1002 .T67 Regular Loan & Wilson Library Reference Quarto Z1002 .B5685 SuppN.
      • Location(s): Wilson Reference Z1002 .B5685
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • Retrospective
    • Quellenkunde der deutschen Geschichte; Bibliographie... zur deutschen Geschichte.
      Dahlmann-Waitz, Quellenkunde der deutschen Geschichte; Bibliographie der Quellen und der Literatur zur deutschen Geschichte.
      Lists major primary and secondary sources for German history.
      • Location(s): WILSON Reference Quarto DD89 .D248x 1965
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
    • Repertorium fontium historiae medii aevi, primum ab Augusto Potthast digestum, nunc cura collegii historicorum e pluribus nationibus emendatum et auctum
      • Location(s): Wilson Reference D117.X1 R36x 1962
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • Current
    • International Bibliography of Historical Sciences
      Truly international in scope, this annual bibliography attempts to cover historical writings in general. Includes periodical articles, books, conference proceedings, etc., in a subject arrangement. Includes author, person (as subject) and geographical indexes. The emphasis is on European history.
      • Location(s): Wilson Reference D20 .I58x
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
    • IMB: International Medieval Bibliography Authentication Required
      The IMB is an interdisciplinary guide to the study of the Middle Ages, the period 476-1500. Geographic coverage extends across Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa, covering resources in over 25 languages. Note: The IMB provides downloadable software to view and print non-English diacritics and special characters.
      Also available in print in Wilson Reference D111 .I56x
    • MLA International Bibliography Authentication Required
      The MLA International Bibliography is a classified listing and subject index of scholarly books and articles on modern languages, literatures, folklore, and linguistics which has been compiled by the Modern Language Association of America since 1926.
    • Writings on British History
      "A bibliography of books and articles on the history of Great Britain from about 400 A.D. to 1914." Ceased publication with 1973/74 issue
      • Location(s): Wilson Reference DA30 .W7x
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
Encyclopedias and Other Compendia
  • Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages Authentication Required
    Online and in print. A collaborative work of over 600 scholars from more than forty countries, the Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages provides 3,000 concise and detailed articles on all aspects of the period from the fifth to the fifteenth century. It explores art, architecture, religion, law, science, language, philosophy, and theology, as well as cultural, religious, intellectual, social and political history. With a focus on focus on Europe and Christendom, the Encyclopedia also covers the rise of Islam and people of other cultures with whom Europeans came into contact.
    • Location(s): Wilson Reference quarto D114 .B86 1995
    Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • Dictionary of the Middle Ages
    13 volume encyclopedia dealing with all aspects of the Middle Ages in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.
    • Location(s): Wilson Library General Collection
    Quarto D114 .D5 1982
    Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • Kulturhistoriskt lexikon för nordisk medeltid från vikingatid till reformationstid
    Encyclopedia of the Nordic Middle Ages from the Viking Age to the Time of the Reformation. Articles in Scandinavian Languages, with Literature references. Illustrated.
    • Location(s): Wilson Reference DL30 .K818
    Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
Language Dictionaries

Below are a few of the major dictionaries related to languages during the medieval period. For others, look in the online public catalog under the language you need and then under Dictionaries as a subheading--e.g., french language--dictionaries. For grammars, look under the language and then under Grammar as a subheading--e.g., german language--grammar.
  • Dictionnaire de la langue française contenant, la nomenclature, la grammaire, la signification des mots, la partie historique, l'étymologie
    • Location(s): Wilson Annex -- Folio PC2625 .L6 1873
    Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • Middle English Dictionary
    A comprehensive analysis of lexicon and usage for the period 1100-1500, based on the analysis of a collection of over three million citation slips, the largest collection of this kind available. Free access as of February 08, 2007.
    • Location(s): Wilson Annex Quarto PE679 .M54 ; Wilson Quarto PE679 .M54 ; Wilson Reference Quarto PE679 .M54
    Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
Biographical Works
  • Indexes
    • Author Biographies Master Index
      Index to over 650,000 citations about authors from 225 biographical dictionaries and directories of writers.
      • Location(s): Wilson Reference Quarto PN452 .A9x
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
    • Biography and Genealogy Master Index Authentication Required
      The BGMI contains biographical entries from more than 1,000 current and retrospective biographical reference sources. This figure translates into some 15 million biographies on nearly 5 million people, living and deceased, from all time periods, geographical locations, and fields of endeavor.
      • Location(s): Also owned in print : Wilson Library General Collection Quarto CT 214 .B51x
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
    • Biography Index: A Cumulative Index to Biographical Material in Books and Magazines
      Quarterly, with annual (formerly three-year) cumulations. The best known and most often used
      biographical index, it covers over 3,000 periodicals and numerous books.
      Search by name or occupation.

      • Location(s): Wilson Library General Collection CT214 .B56x
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • Directories of Scholars
    • Contemporary Authors Online
      A bio-bibliographical guide to current writers in fiction, general nonfiction, poetry, journalism, drama, motion pictures, television, and other fields. Provides complete biographical and bibliographical references for more than 100,000 authors in the U.S. and around the world. This database was cancelled with the subscription end date of November 9, 2016. This entry will be removed in 6-months.
      [Resource no longer available]
    • Directory of American Scholars : A Biographical Directory
      8th ed. 4 vols. Vol. 3 is Foreign Languages, Linguistics and Philology.
      • Location(s): WILSON Reference LA2311 .C32 2002 6 vol. ; WILSON Stacks Quarto LA2311 .C32 ; MAGRATH Stacks LA2311 .C32 ; WALTER Reference
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
    • National Faculty Directory
      Useful directory for identifying location of faculty, however no background information is provided.
      • Location(s): Quarto L901.N34
      Latest edition in WILSON Reference (Desk); MAGRATH Reference; MATHEMATICS; WALTER SCI/ENG Reference; VETERINARY MEDICINE; BIO-MED Reference L901 N277
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • Prosopography

    Prosopography is a form of historical inquiry which attracted considerable attention from historians of Antiquity and the Modern Era earlier in the century and has now firmly established itself in medieval studies. Its object is the identification and study of the influential people of a given period, the people who held the positions of power in their society. More specifically, it seeks biographical data about their place and family of origin, their social status, their friends, acquaintances, and other personal contacts, and about their careers. It then attempts to assess the importance of family and personal relationships in their achievement of rank and office or function, and in influencing the courses of action they folowed in their adult careers. In so doing, prosopographers hope to acquire a better understanding of the power structure of medieval society.

    (-- George Beech)

    Among the most important sources for the medieval prosographer are collections of national biographies such as Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie, Dictionnaire de Biographie Francaise, and The Dictionary of National Biography. A source like Slocum (item 64) is helpful in providing an overview of the various biographical dictionaries and other related works that are available. Some other titles of interest to the medievalist are the following:
    • Annotated index of medieval women
      Short biographies and references for medieval women from all social classes. Indexed by county, occupation, region and city.
      • Location(s): Wilson & Wilson Reference CT3220 .A56 1992
      Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
Theses and Dissertations
  • Digital Dissertations Authentication Required
    Dissertations and theses from over 1000 universities. Doctoral dissertations are indexed for almost all North American graduate schools and many European universities. Masters theses from selected schools only. Provides bibliographic citations for older titles. Abstracts are included for dissertations since 1980 and for masters theses since 1988. Some dissertations, beginning with 1997 publication dates, are available digitally. These include the University of Minnesota and other CIC member universities.
  • Jahresverzeichnis der Deutschen Hochschulschriften
    Located at Wilson 016.378 J19 are:
    Jahrg. 86,pt. 1 ; Jahrg. 86,pt. 2 ; Jahrg. 87
    Other volumes are in storage.
    • Location(s): IN STORAGE: MN Lib Access Ctr 016.378 J19 9ZAR10D01S06THL
    Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
Periodical Indexes
  • Art Full Text Authentication Required
    Art Full Text, produced by The HW Wilson Company, is a bibliographic database that indexes and abstracts articles from periodicals published throughout the world. There is full-text coverage for selected periodicals. Coverage includes English-language periodicals, yearbooks, and museum bulletins, as well as periodicals published in French, Italian, German, Japanese, Spanish, Dutch, and Swedish. In addition to articles, Art Full Text indexes reproductions of works of art that appear in indexed periodicals. Indexing coverage begins 1984; abstracting coverage begins with January 1994. The abstracts range from 50 to 300 words and describe the content and scope of the source articles. Full-text coverage begins in 1997.
  • Arts & Humanities Citation Index (included in Web of Science)
    Note: A&HCI is no longer searchable as a separate index.
    (1) Start by clicking on this link, which takes you to the Web of Science main page.
    (2) In the search box enter one or more key words.
    (3) On the next page, under Research Domains, select Arts and Humanities to limit your results.
    (4) Hints: Your choice of words can influence the results. For example, "hydraulic fracturing" will favor science-journal articles; "fracking" will retrieve more articles in humanities and social-science journals.
  • C.R.I.S. The combined retrospective index set to journals in history, 1838-1974
    A subject and author index to 243 English-language periodicals covering all periods and areas in the field of history.
    • Location(s): Wilson Reference quarto D1 .C7x
    Check MNCAT Record for Location and Availability
  • French Periodical Index (print)
    1973/1974; 1975-1995
    • Location(s): Wilson General Collection Quarto AI7 .F7
  • Germanistik
    A core research tool for the study of Germanistik. A bibliography of books, articles, and dissertations. Wilson Library (PF3003.G51x) has v.1 (1960)-v.42 (2012)
    • Location(s):
  • Linguistics & Language Behavior Abstracts (LLBA) Authentication Required
    LLBA covers all aspects of the study of language including phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax and semantics. Complete coverage is also given to various fields of linguistics including descriptive, historical, comparative, theoretical and geographical linguistics.
  • Philosopher's Index Authentication Required
    features author-written abstracts covering scholarly research published in journals and books, including contributions to anthologies and book reviews. More on content at
  • Religion Index One: Periodicals
    Location / Call Number Holdings Notes Location Map IN STORAGE: MN Lib Access Ctr U of M Twin Cities Quarto BL1 .R38x v.13-16 (1977/1978-1983/1984) v.17-31 (1985-1999) TC Wilson Library Reference Mfiche 9
  • Social Sciences Citation Index (Web of Science) Authentication Required
    Covers the social sciences, including anthropology, history, industrial relations, information science and library science, law, linguistics, philosophy, psychology, psychiatry, political science, public health, social issues, social work, sociology, substance abuse, urban studies, and women's studies.
    Provides bibliographic citations, plus author abstracts "for approximately 60% of the articles in the database." Each citation also includes a list of references cited in the source article. In addition, it is possible to retrieve a list of works that have cited a specific author or a specific earlier work.
    Indexes articles, reviews, letters, etc. from over "1,950 journals across 50 social sciences disciplines. It also indexes individually selected, relevant items from over 3,300 of the world's leading scientific and technical journals."
  • Social Sciences Index / International Index to Periodicals (print indexes)
    Indexes humanities and social sciences journals. v. 1-27; 1907-15--1973-74
    International Index to Periodicals v.3-13 (1920/1923-1952/1955)
    Wilson Quarto AI3 .R49

    Social Sciences Index v.1-28 (1974/1975-2001/2002) Wilson AI3 .S62 Author and subject indexes to publications in fields of anthropology, archaeology and classical studies, economics, folklore, geography, history, language and literature, music, philosophy, political science, religion and theology, sociology and theater arts.

Page Coordinator: Gordon Anderson
This URL:



Federal Depository Library Program