University of Wisconsin–Madison


Julianne Haahr (European History and Social Sciences Librarian)

History 313: Introduction to Byzantine History and Civilization     

Visit to Memorial Library, Instruction Rm. 231


Librarians: Julianne Haahr,; Steven Baumgart,

 Secondary Sources:

  • Scholarly Journal Articles – peer reviewed, with cited references; secondary source material.
  • Scholarly Monographs/Books – analyses, narrative interpretation of events, people; published in later time period from the historic event; secondary source material.


Searching – General Tips:

  • Consult reference materials when beginning research.
  • Look at the Sources Cited, Notes, Bibliographies, Suggest Reading lists of items already obtained to find more sources.
  • Be attentive to subject headings and search using the Subject field.
  • Choose effective search terms; consider all possibilities/variants.
  • Utilize a guided or advanced search option to enable a more precise search.
  • Use special search features such as date or language limits, wildcard/truncation symbols.



  • Library Catalog – find materials in the UW Libraries and request items from libraries included in the UW System throughout the state.
  • WorldCat – the world’s largest network of library content and services, with 1.5 billion bibliographic records available for viewing. It includes cataloging information from 10,000 libraries around the globe. Several European libraries include their catalog records and holdings information.


Course-Recommended Sources in Library:

Byzantinische Zeitschrift (ISSN 0007-7704)

  • Key bibliographical source in Byzantine studies. A German-issued journal (“Zeitschrift” is the German word for “journal”), publishes scholarly articles by international scholars. Articles in various languages (mainly European), English included.
  • Available in print and electronic. Most recent print issues located in the library’s Periodicals Reading Room on 2nd floor; older print issues in stacks on floor 1M North, call no. AP B9988.
  • Look in the back of each issue for “Bibliographische Notizen,” a bibliography listing recent scholarly works in different languages. Browse for the English citations. Note: Do not allow other languages to intimidate you.
  • Electronic version begins with 2009; all articles in an issue, including bibliography, are downloadable for viewing.


Byzantion (ISSN 0378-2506)

  • International scholarly journal devoted to all aspects of Byzantine scholarship. Issued from Belgium, with French as the primary language; and some articles published in English.
  • The library has all print volumes through 2005 located in stacks on floor 1M North, call no. AP B9994.
  • Recent volumes’ table of contents can be viewed online at


Relevant Databases and Web Resources:

 FRANCIS – strong in areas like archaeology, geography, linguistics, philosophy, religion, and sociology. Mostly in French, some English.

Google Scholar – search specifically for scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts, and technical reports from all broad areas of research.

Historical Abstracts – indexes and abstracts information in world history and the related social sciences and humanities.

Humanities Full Text – indexes English-language periodicals and journals in the humanities.

International Medieval Bibliography – major index to medieval studies (c. 400-1500). Includes citations to articles in approximately 4500 journals and “miscellany” volumes. Remember to log out when finished.

JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive – a full-text journal database providing access to over 500 titles in various fields including history.

Oxford Classical Dictionary (OCD) – a standard one-volume encyclopedia of everything relating to ancient Greece and Rome, including entries relevant to Byzantine history.

Project MUSE – provides full-text access to more than 300 humanities and social science journals from various publishers. Disciplines covered include art, cultural studies, and history, to name only a few.