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Subject guides: Ancient History

Ancient History section

Printed collections in UCL Library Services are described below. There is also information about:

Visit the blog Ancient world studies/Archaeology to keep up to date with news from the Library

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Printed collections

The principal collection for Ancient History is in two reading rooms adjoining the North Corridor of the Main Library (in the Wilkins building). Other collections which may be relevant include Classics, Jewish Studies, Roman Law (part of the Law collection) which are all housed in the Main Library. The Classical Archaeology and Egyptology collections are located in the Institute of Archaeology Library, 31-34 Gordon Square (5th floor).

See separate pages for maps and opening hours.

Book collections
The Library has its own classification scheme for arranging books on the shelves: a typical classmark for a book on the “open” shelves will consist of the name of a subject (indicating a section of the Library) followed by letters and numbers denoting its classified position on the shelves in that section. For ANCIENT HISTORY the Garside classification scheme has a broadly geographical approach –

ANCIENT HISTORY D 4..........for books on the sources of Mesopotamian history
ANCIENT HISTORY D 14........for books on the Babylonian ascendancy
ANCIENT HISTORY P 4..........for books on the sources of ancient Greek history
ANCIENT HISTORY P 14........for books on the Peloponnesian War

At UCL we concentrate especially on Greek & Roman history of the early & classical periods, but also have important sections on Near Eastern history, Byzantine history and the history of the early Christian Church. The history of Egypt in the Hellenic and Roman eras is covered too but students should also use the EGYPTOLOGY section in the Institute of Archaeology Library, especially for earlier and Pharaonic periods.

The Library maintains complete sets of the Cambridge Ancient History (ANCIENT HISTORY A 5 CAM) and the Aufstieg und Niedergang der romischen Welt (ANCIENT HISTORY R 5 TEM), both essential tools for the study of ancient history at both undergraduate and research levels. The ancient history section also includes important series on inscriptions such as Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum (ANCIENT HISTORY FOLIOS W 32) and Inscriptiones Graecae (ANCIENT HISTORY FOLIOS W 25). However, it should be noted that the works of the ancient historians will be found in the appropriate sections of the CLASSICS collection in the Library.

Journals covering ancient history are also shelved with this section of the Main Library and have the prefix CLASSICS Pers, with a display unit for the most recent parts. Journals are normally available for overnight loan (from 4.00pm). For electronic journals, see below.

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Electronic collections

Electronic sources

Material held in electronic form is available to registered members of UCL: you will usually need your UCL userid/password for Information Systems in order to gain access to them. For the full list of electronic databases presently available please consult: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/database/

Databases on the College Network of particular interest to those studying the ancient world include Database of Classical Bibliography (based on L’Année Philologique, it is not complete yet it offers references ‘to all known scholarly work published in any language anywhere in the world’). The Social Sciences Citation Index covers many of the journals in the field of ancient history

Electronic journals

A range of electronic versions of journal titles is available. Start from the list on the Library's web pages at: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/ejournal/ where you will find details of access arrangements for each title.

Exam papers

Copies of UCL examination papers for undergraduate courses (from 1997 onwards) are available on the web at: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/exam.shtml. Printed copies of the undergraduate and postgraduate exam papers for the last 6 years are shelved in the South Corridor of the Main Library.

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Other libraries

The Institute of Classical Studies Library/Joint Library of the Hellenic and Roman Societies has an excellent collection on Greek & Roman Ancient History. The Library at King’s College London is especially strong on the Byzantine period. The Senate House (in Malet Street) also holds material in this subject area and any registered member of UCL can join the library and borrow from there.

For more information about the use of other libraries, see the full information at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/otherlib.shtml - this includes a link to http://www.m25lib.ac.uk/ and which offers a subject based-search of other libraries collection in the London area.

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Contact details

If you have any problems in using the Library, come to the Enquiry Desk, or ask for the subject librarian for Ancient History:

Jes Cooban (Wednesdays only)
E-mail: j.cooban@ucl.ac.uk
Telephone: internal: 54062; external: 020 3108 4062

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Last modified 7 October 2009

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