Franklin &  Marshall College Library

HIS 277 / RST 277: Islamic Spain

Secondary sources - Encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks and bibliographies

Secondary sources are informational resources written by individuals who were not the actual participants in the topic at hand. They may be of value to your research since they often provide greater objectivity and different perspectives as a result of the passage of time. Common secondary sources include encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, and bibliographies.
Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World
Ref Room BP40 .E525 2004
Composed of over 500 essay entries, this two volume work is well illustrated and contains bibliographies at the end of each entry. It includes a genealogy and index detailing the contents.
Muslim Almanac
Ref Room BP40 .M83 1996
Emphasizes the impact Islam has had on various locales and cultures. The material is presented in a geographic format. Illustrated in black and white. Includes chapter bibliographies and index at end.
Historical Dictionary of Islam
Ref Room BP50 .A33 2001
Provides a chronology of significant events from Muhammad's birth to the close of the 20th century. Concise alphabetically arranged entries have cross references. Includes an extensive bibliography.
Oxford History of Islam
Ref Room BP50 .O95 1999
This work is comprised of brief essays on religion, law, art and architecture, and science and technology. There is one chapter covering Islam and Christendom from the 7th through the to 15th centuries. Well illustrated. Contains a bibliography and detailed subject index.
Dictionary of the Middle Ages
Ref Room D114 .D5 1982
A landmark work, this twelve volume set is encyclopedic in scope with over 5,000 signed articles. Although entitled "dictionary", it provides an extensive subject index allowing access to detailed, scholarly discussions of religious and political histories of events, people and themes in the Middle Ages.
Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages
Ref Room D114 .E53 2000
This two volume work is a re-edited and updated translation of the Dictionnaire Encylopedique du Moyen Age (1997) and retains its French emphasis. Articles are generally brief with short bibliographies. Contains index.
Medieval Iberia
Ref Room DP99 .M33 2003
Spanish and Portuguese histories extend in chronological coverage from 470 to 1500 covering a wide variety of political, institutional, cultural, social, literary, artistic, and architectural topics. Varies in timeliness as this work took ten years to be written, edited and published. Contains article bibliographies and index at end.
Medieval Islamic Civilization
Ref Room DS36.85 .M434 2006
This two volume encyclopedia focuses on Islamic culture and civilization from the 6th to the 17th centuries. Providing overviews of a variety of topics, including Muslim philosophy, science, literature, medicine, and mathematics, this resource is arranged in alphabetical order with entries ranging from a few paragraphs to several pages. Each entry has cross-references and a bibliography. Contains index.
Encyclopedia of Islam
Ref Room DS37 .E523
The most academically prestigious, scholarly and comprehensive single reference source on Islam published in the English language, this prodigious work's main corpus was finally completed in the year 2000 after forty years of production in small fascules (parts) that the Library later bound together into twelve volumes. It covers biography, history, geography, religion, and social institutions and customs. There is also geographical material regarding the larger divisions of he former Ottoman empire and European countries in which Islam has been a significant historical factor. Contains bibliographies. An index of subjects is in a separate volume.

ITER: Gateway to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance
An online bibliography containing over 800,000 entries, this resource maintained by the University of Toronto is useful for identification of book and articles dealing with all aspects of history between 400 and 1700 A.D.

How to find books

  • Select "Library Catalog" from the Library home page. To find books for this class use broad keyword terms such as "medieval Islam", "al-Andalus", or "Islamic Spain."
  • Look at the subject headings for a book that meets your needs. Select those subject headings to find other books that are described the same way and might also be useful.
  • Go to the call number locations of those books both in the stacks and the reference room. Similar books will be nearby. Use indices to further mine their contents

How to find and locate journal articles

Look under "A - Z List of Resources" on the Library homepage. Scroll down to find the selections that may be the most helpful for your topic, some of which are...

A collection of full text articles in .pdf format from the back files of over 200 scholarly journals, many dating from the nineteenth-century to within the last 4 or 5 years.

Historical Abstracts
The most comprehensive indexing service in the field of non-U.S. and Canadian history from 1450 to the present. Covers materials published from 1955 to the present.

ATLA Religion Index
Comprehensive database in religious and theological scholarship. Covers materials published from 1949 to the present.

Once you have a specific journal title, go to "Journals at F&M" from the library homepage and type in the title of a journal you hope to find.

How to find information on the World Wide Web

The World Wide Web can be a helpful environment in which to access scholarly information but because it is an unmediated matrix it is advisable to start one's exploration of it at bona fide sites.

Internet Medieval Sourcebook
A compilation of links to freely available full text primary source material on the Web.

Labyrinth: Reources for Medieval Spain
A categorized grouping of links to various formats of materrial concerning medieval studies as well as a link to the Cornell University's Middle East and Islamic Studies Collection.

American Academy of Research Historians of Medieval Spain
This scholarly society's web site focuses entirely on Medieval Spain. Among other resources, it features The Library of Iberian Resources Online.

ORB: On-Line Reference Book for Medieval Studies
A collection of online only texts (both primary and secondary) dealing with Medieval history, religion, politics and socioeconomic studies.

How to...

Last updated: 2/27/07 mg. contact Marty Gordon for further assistance