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Simpson | Stafford | Special Collections

Classics: Obtaining Background Material

A research guide to finding books, articles, and other resources in the Classics

Using Reference Books

Use Reference books to:

♦  Obtain background material to help familiarize yourself with your topic

♦  Locate definitions of terms and concepts

♦  Find bibliographies suggesting additional resources on your topic


Reference books are on the first floor of Simpson Library

Don't forget!  If you need assistance, stop at the Information Desk (located to the right as you enter Simpson Library's front door).

Citing Your Sources

While writing research papers, you may need to:

  List your sources in bibliographies or works cited, and

♦  Provide either footnotes or endnotes.

Here is a link to the UMW Libraries' Guide to Citing Resources.

Navigation Menu

When looking for background information related to any of the following topics, either click on these links or scroll down for reference books found on the first floor of Simpson Library:

General Reference Books

Literary Reference Books

Mythology Reference Books

General Reference Books

Brill's New Pauly: Encyclopaedia of the Ancient World: Antiquity
REFB DE 5 .N4813 2002
Brill's New Pauly: Encyclopaedia of the Ancient World: Classical Tradition
REFB DE 5 .N3513 2006
The Cambridge Dictionary of Classical Civilization
REFB DE 5 .C28 2006
Classical Studies:  A Guide to the Reference Literature
REFB PA 91 .J4 1996
The Classical Tradition
REFB DE 60 .C55 2010
Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece
REFB DF 16 .E52 2006
Encyclopedia of Ancient Rome
REFB DG 270 .B86 2012
Encyclopedia of Greece and the Hellenic Tradition
REFB DF 757 .E53 2000
Encyclopedia of the Ancient Greek World
REFB DF 16 .S23 1995
Encyclopedia of the Ancient World
REFB CB 311 .E536 2000
An Encyclopedia of the History of Classical Archaeology
REFB DE 5 .E5 1996
Encyclopedia of the Roman Empire
REFB DG 270 .B86 2002
From Polis to Empire--The Ancient World, c800 B.C. - A.D. 500
REFB D 54 .F76 2002
A Guide to the Ancient World
REFB DE 25 .G72 1986
Historical Atlas of the Ancient World
REFB DE 5 .N4813 2002
The Oxford Classical Dictionary
REFB DE 5 .O9 2003
The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece and Rome
REFB DE 5 .O95 2010

Literary Reference Books

Ancient Writers:  Greece and Rome
REFB PA 3002 .A5 1982
Classical and Medieval Literature Criticism
REFB PN 681.5 .C57
Classical Greek and Roman Drama
REFB PA 3024 .F67 1989
Classical Literature and Its Times
REFB PA 31 .M67 2006
Crowell’s Handbook of Classical Drama
REFB PA 3024 .H35
Dictionary of Literary Biography
(see vol. 176, Ancient Greek Authors, and vol. 211, Ancient Roman Writers)
REFB PN 501 .D5x
Also available online through Artemus Literary Sources
Encyclopedia of Modern Greek Literature
REFB PA 5210 .M44 2004
The Facts on File Companion to Classical Drama
REFB PA 3024 .T48 2005
Greek and Latin Authors, 800 B.C. – A.D. 1000
REFB  PA 31 .G7
Greek and Roman Authors
REFB PA 3001 .G9x 1973
The Oxford Companion to Classical Literature
REFB PA 31 .H69

Mythology Reference Books

The Facts on File Encyclopedia of World Mythology & Legend 
REFB BL 303 .M45 2004
Gods, Goddesses, and Mythology
REFB BL 312 .G64 2005
Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae (LIMC)
REFB N7760 .L49 1981
Myths and Legends of the World
REFB BL 311 .M97 2000
Oxford Companion to World Mythology
REFB BL 312 .L44 2005
Thematic Guide to World Mythology
REFB BL 312 .S76 2004