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Resources for Classics

Roman Coliseum Spartan feet Greek Characters in Stone

Classics is the study of the language, literature, and culture of Greek and Roman civilization. It deals not only with history and language, but also with philosophy, religion, art history, and archaeology. This guide points out some of the resources available in this interdisciplinary field. It is not complete; please don't hesitate to ask a librarian for help if you aren't finding what you need. Also, never underestimate the power of browsing. Keep your eye out for other excellent sources shelved near a volume you've already found.

Table of Contents:

Indexes and Databases
For more information and additional suggestions, visit the Databases Guide for Classics.
  • L'Annee Philologique Online
    Annual index of scholarly publications relating to the civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome (500 BCE to 800 CE). The most complete index available for classics, this resource includes over 375,000 citations to articles, books, book reviews, conference proceedings, and essays on on all aspects of Greek and Latin cultures, including literature, language, art, archaeology, philosophy, and religion. International in scope, it indexes works in all languages.

    Search tips: To begin your search, click "Enter." Select "Full Text" to search the full text of the citations. Select "Subjects and discplines" to search or browse the tables of contents in two separate files: since volume 67 (since 1996) and before volume 67. Click "Read the total" to view the results of your search.
    Full-text backfiles to over 350 scholarly journals from more than 25 academic disciplines published between the 19th and 21st centuries in the JSTOR Arts & Sciences I, Arts & Sciences II, and Language & Literature collections. JSTOR provides complete journal backruns from the date of initial publication up to a "moving wall" of 3 to 5 years before the present year. To limit your search to full text articles, make sure that the option to "include links to external content" is turned off.
    1831-recent years
  • PapersFirst
    Index of papers presented at conferences worldwide. Covers every published congress, symposium, conference, exposition, workshop and meeting received by The British Library Document Supply Centre. Access is provided by the Electronic Library for Minnesota (ELM).
  • ProceedingsFirst
    Index of worldwide conference proceedings. It covers every published congress, symposium, conference, exposition, workshop, and meeting received by The British Library Document Supply Centre, and contains in each record a list of the papers presented at each conference. Access is provided by the Electronic Library for Minnesota (ELM).
  • Project MUSE
    Project MUSE provides full text electronic access to over 100 scholarly journals in humanities, the social sciences, and mathematics. Topics covered include literary theory; classics; history and cultural studies; philosophy; film, theatre and the performing arts; political science and mathematics.
  • TLG: Thesaurus Linguae Graecae
    This digital library contains virtually all Greek texts surviving from the period between Homer (8th century BCE) and 600 CE and the majority of surviving works up the fall of Byzantium in 1453 CE. It currently includes 12,000 works representing 3,700 authors and continues its efforts to include all extant Greek texts from the byzantine and post-byzantine period. The database offers a number of different screen displays for the Greek in each work. It is accessible from a designated computer in the Classics department office and two computers on the main floor of the library, on the wall opposite the library's e-classroom.
    8th c. BCE-1453 CE
    This site searches the table of contents for a selection of Classics journals. Links to full text articles (when available) and abstracts are provided. If you find an article that isn't full text on the site, use the Journal Locator to see if Gustavus has access, by entering the title of the journal into the search box.
Reference Works
General reference works related to Classics are listed in alphabetical order, followed by language resources and reference works in related fields. Once again, this list is not comprehensive. Talk with a reference librarian if these resources aren't meeting your needs; be sure to browse the shelves nearby, too, since books are shelved by topic in our library.
  • Ancient Writers: Greece and Rome
    New York: Scribner's 1982
    Covers major writers chronologically from Homer to Ammianus Marcellinus, as well as selected topics such as Greek lyric poets and Hellenistic poetry at Alexandria. Each of the forty-seven essays are written by an expert on the topic. They are detailed and lengthy and are each followed by a long selective bibliography of primary and secondary sources.
    • Location(s): Ref PA 3002 .A5 1982
  • Brill's New Pauly: Encyclopaedia of the Ancient World
    Brill 2002
    An English translation of a new edition of a German-language classic. When complete, it will cover many aspects of the classical world with scholarly articles reflecting current research. The companion set covers the classical tradition and how the Greek and Roman world has influenced our understanding in more recent times.
    • Location(s): Ref DE 5 .N4813 2002 (Antiquities) Ref DE5 .P33213 2006 (Classical Tradition
  • The Cambridge Ancient History
    Camridge: Cambridge University 1970 2nd and 3rd ed. edition
    This authoritative history covers the ancient world chronologically.
    • Location(s): Ref D 57 .C252
  • Civilizations of the Ancient Near East
    New York: Scribner's 2000
    Essays on the culture and history of Egypt, Syro-Palestine, Mesopotamia, and Anatolia. Includes some coverage of the Arabian peninsula, northeast Africa, and Aegean and Anatolian cultures. Provides excellent background papers on culture and society, with extensive bibliographies.
    • Location(s): Ref DS57 C.547 2000
  • Dictionary of Ancient History
    Oxford: Blackwell 1994
    Covers terms related to the Greco-Roman world, excluding mythology.
    • Location(s): Ref DS 61 .W6 1994
  • Gods and Mortals in Classical Mythology
    Springfield, MA: G. & C. Merriam 1973
    Identifies people and gods, providing references to the myths and literature in which they are mentioned. There are a number of fine illustrations, many of them reproductions of later western art that employs classical iconography.
    • Location(s): Ref BL 715 .G67 1973
  • Greek Literature
    New York: Routledge 2001
    A compendium of writings by philological scholars on ancient Greek literature from the oral tradition and Homer to Greek literature during the Roman and Byzantine periods.
    • Location(s): Ref PA 3054 .G74 2001
  • Illustrated Encyclopaedia of the Classical World
    New York: Harper and Ros 1975
    Provides brief definitions and discussions of classical people, places, institutions, and culture. One of its strengths is the number of illustrations accompanying the entries.
    • Location(s): Ref DE 5 .I55
  • Mythologies
    Chicago: University of Chicago Press 1991
    Detailed essays on myths from a wide range of cultures, including Greece and Rome.
    • Location(s): Ref BL 311 .D513 1991
  • Oxford Companion to Classical Literature
    Oxford: Oxford UP 1989 2nd edition
    A handy guide to writers and works from the Classical times, giving concise discussions on the social and cultural context of the literature. A concise version is available online.
    • Location(s): Ref PA 31 .H69 1989
  • Oxford Classical Dictionary
    Oxford: Clarendon 1996 3rd ed. edition
    Covers people, places, events, works of art, figures in mythology, etc. in alphabetical order providing concise and informative articles.
    • Location(s): Ref DE 5 .O9 1996
  • Oxford Reference Online
    Over 100 full text language and subject dictionaries and reference works. Topics covered include general reference, language, science and medicine, humanities, social sciences, and business.
  • Place-Names in Classical Mythology: Greece
    Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-Clio 1989
    Provides descriptions of places referred to in Classical mythology and literature. In many cases references are made to literature in which the place is significant.
    • Location(s): Ref DF 16 .B45
  • Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites
    Princeton: Princeton UP 1976
    Offers descriptions of classical sites found in Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, with references to relevant classical texts. A good way to tie places to classical literature.
    • Location(s): Ref DE 59 .P7
  • Who's Who in the Classical World
    Oxford: Oxford UP 2002
    Focusing exclusively on real people, this is a dictionary of ancient biography, covering Greek and Roman history and politics, literature, philosophy, science and art. Shorter entries provide factual accounts, while the longer entries are short essays covering major historical and cultural themes in antiquity, centered around individuals such as Herodotus, Socrates, Plato, Alexander the Great, and Augustus.
  • Greek and Latin Language Resources
  • Eureka! A Dictionary of Greek and Latin Elements in English Words
    Newton Abbot, England: David and Charles 1987
    A handy compendium demonstrating the English language's debt to classical languages.
    • Location(s): Ref PE 1582 .L3 B97 1987
  • Greek-English Lexicon
    Oxford: Clarendon 1940 9th ed. edition
    This standard Greek dictionary was first published in 1843 and has gone through numerous revisions. It not only gives definitions but cites texts in which the words were used.
    • Location(s): Ref PA 445 .E5 L6
  • The Oxford Grammar of Classical Greek
    Oxford: Oxford UP 2001
    A handy guide to Greek grammar.
    • Location(s): Ref. PA 258 .M89 2001
  • Oxford Latin Dictionary
    Oxford: Clarendon 1982
    Provides definitions of words and examples of how they are used in classical texts.
    • Location(s): Ref PA 2365 .O9
  • In Related Fields
  • Dictionary of Art
    Grove's Dictionaries 1996
    An exhaustive encyclopedia of world art, containing articles written by scholars on artists, movements, works, and subjects, each followed by a selective bibliography.
    • Location(s): Ref N 31 .D5 1996
  • Encyclopedia of Philosophy
    Detroit: Macmillan Reference 2006 2nd ed. edition
    A recent update of a classic source of substantial essays on philosophers and their ideas. All of the articles and references have been updated to reflect current philosophical thought, and many entries have been added for contemporary issues and philosophers.
    • Location(s): Ref B 51 .E53 2006
  • Grove Encyclopedia of Classical Art and Architecture
    Oxford: Oxford University Press 2007
    Presents over 1,000 articles on the visual arts in the classical world. Includes bibliographies.
    • Location(s): Ref N5610 .G76 2007 (2 vols.)
  • Oxford Guide to Classical Mythology in the Arts, 1300-1900s
    New York: Oxford UP 1993
    Links Classical subjects and Western art, cataloging under topics, the various expressions of each topic in the fine arts, music, dance, and literature. While it does not claim to be exhaustive, it does provide background information and intriguing connections; includes bibliographic references to published sources for the art works listed.
    • Location(s): Ref NX 650 .M9 R45 1993
  • Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy
    London: Routledge 1998
    A vast encyclopedia of the field that extends the classic Encyclopedia of Philosophy by adding both new topics and approaches to philosophy, but also by including new approaches and new research on classical philosophy. New areas covered in this work include philosophical approaches based on feminism, postcolonialism, poststructuralism, deconstruction, and postmodernism.
    • Location(s): Ref B 51 .R68 1998
Browsing for Books
Books are shelved in general subject categories using the Library of Congress classification system. You may want to supplement your use of the catalog with browsing shelf areas for your topic. Below is a brief listing of some of the subject locations in the field of classics.
  • B 108-708 Ancient Philosophy
  • BL 175-325 Natural Theology, Myth
  • CB History of Civilization
  • CC Archaeology
  • D History (General)
    • 51-95 Ancient
  • DE Mediterranean Region. Greco-Roman World
  • DF 10-298 Greek History
  • DG 11-365 Ancient Italy, Rome to 476
  • GN Anthropology
  • N Fine Arts (arranged by type of media, e.g. architecture, pottery, painting...)
    • 5300-7418 Art History
  • P Philosophy and Linguisitcs
  • PA Classical Languages and Literature
    • 227-1179 Greek Philology and Language
    • 2001-2915 Latin Philology and Language
    • 3051-4500 Greek Literature to ca. 600AD


Print journals are housed in the periodicals collection on the first floor of the library.
  • American Journal of Archaeology
  • Archaeological Reports
  • Archaeology
  • Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies
  • Classical Review
  • Classical World
  • Helios
  • Historia: Zeitschrift
  • Journal of Hellenic Studies
  • Journal of Roman Archaeology
  • Journal of Roman Studies
  • Phoenix
  • Ramus
  • Project MUSE
    Project Muse also contains the full text of a large number of classics journals.
Online Journals
  • Arion: A Journal of Humanities and the Classics
    A selection of the journal's articles are available for free on the website; online archives also date back to the early 1990s. Gustavus began subscribing to the journal in 2005 and copies can be located on the first floor of the library.
  • General Resources
    • Perseus Digital Library
      Searchable digital library that includes primary sources, secondary materials, and teaching tools.
  • Art
    • Beazley Archive
      Search tens of thousands of quality photographic images from the Beazley Archive, which is affiliated with the University of Oxford.
  • Gender
  • History
  • Language & Literature
    • Forum Romanum
      Includes a comprehensive listing of Roman texts and available online translations
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