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Medieval Craftsmen Series (University of Toronto Press)
Art and Architecture Reference
Although the focus of this assignment is not on art history, you may find that these resources provide at least some of the information you'll need to interpret your object.
Oxford Art Online
This massive reference resource includes the full text of the 34-volume Dictionary of Art. [Note: There is a limit of three simultaneous users.]
Oxford Reference Art & Architecture
Includes these sources for an overview of art related topics.
Recommended Subject Encyclopedias
Start your research with these subject encyclopedias, then branch out as needed.
Arts and Humanities through the Eras by
Call Number: Click on the title above for online access.
Publication Date: 2005
Profiling milestones and movements in the arts, literature, music and religion from a specific period, each volume in this five-volume set helps students and researchers understand the various disciplines of the humanities in relation to each other, as well as to history and culture. An overview of the period and a chronology of major world events begin each volume. Nine chapters follow, covering the major branches of the humanities: architecture and design, dance, fashion, literature, music, philosophy, religion, theater and visual arts. Chapters end with significant primary documents from the period.
Volume 3: Medieval Europe (814-1450)
Medieval England by
Call Number: DA129 .M43 1998, Print reference
Publication Date: 1998
This reference work presents entries on all aspects of life and culture in medieval England--art, architecture, law, literature, kings, commoners, women, music, commerce, technology, warfare, religion, and many others.
Medieval Science and Technology: An Encyclopedia by
Call Number: Q124.97 .W45 2004 Print reference
Publication Date: 2004
This encyclopedia begins by introducing the basic concepts of the classical tradition, and explains how these ideas were preserved and commented on by Muslim scholars of the early middle ages, and finally transmitted to western Europe as that region began to grow and expand around 1100 C.E.
The Oxford Companion to British History by
Call Number: Click on title for online access
Publication Date: 2009
The Oxford Companion to British History, offers a wealth of information and insight into the social, political, economic, scientific, cultural, and military aspects of the history of Britain.
Women in the Middle Ages: An Encyclopedia by
Call Number: HQ1143 .W643 2004 v.1-2, Print reference
Publication Date: 2004
This encyclopedia offers coverage of the myriad roles, experiences, and contributions of women in the medieval world.
New Catholic Encyclopedia by
Call Number: BX841 .N44 2003 Print Reference
Publication Date: 2002
Includes dozens of entries relevant to medieval doctrine and practice.
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Using Subject Encyclopedias
It's likely that you'll need to think expansively and creatively as you research your chosen object. The following questions will help guide you as you do research:
Who created the object?
When was it created?
How was it created?
Where was it found?
Who would have made use of it? Who wouldn't have made use of it?
Undertaking Additional Research
If you'd like to do a bit more research beyond what's available in subject encyclopedias, here are a few good strategies to use:
- Search Primo for books that are listed in the bibliographies of encyclopedia entries. You won't need to read the entire book, just the sections that help you interpret your object.
- Search JSTOR for scholarly articles that may reference or help you interpret your object. [JSTOR is a convenient, full-text database, but it doesn't not contain current scholarship.]
- Search ITER, a subject database devoted to medieval studies, for a more expansive set of books, essays in books, and scholarly articles.
- Search HSTM (History of Science, Technology and Medicine) particularly when you're interested in how the object was made or if it relates to medicine or aspects of warfare.