This research guide is intended for students of Women and Gender in Europe, 400-1650. It introduces selected academic publications in the fields of medieval and gender studies. Use the menu on the left to navigate and feel free to contact me if you have questions. Use the book now button on the right to schedule a meeting with me.

 Encyclopedias, Handbooks, Companions

The Library has a substantial collection of subject-specific encyclopedias, handbooks, and companions with exhaustive and well-researched articles written by subject experts. These essays are great introductions to the historiography and helpful in defining and focusing a topic. Articles generally include references to recommended literature.

Oxford Bibliographies (Oxford University Press)  Tutorial
Offers outstanding introductions to a wide variety of topics in medieval and Renaissance studies with an emphasis on Western civilization. Each bibliographic essay begins with a general overview and a list of reference works, followed by a historiography and a list of critical journals in the field. Essays may also include a list of recommended primary sources in the original languages and in translation.

Oxford Handbooks Online (Oxford University Press)
Includes The Oxford Handbook of Women and Gender in Medieval Europe and The Oxford Handbook of Medieval Christianity.

Bloomsbury Medieval Studies (Bloomsbury)
Presents a selection of interdisciplinary medieval studies resources among them the publisher's cultural history series with volumes covering childhood and family, sexuality, women, dress and fashion, money, empire, work, law, animals, the human body, food, emotions, senses, gardens, hair, and theatre in the middle ages.

Routledge Encyclopedias of the Middle Ages
A series of comprehensive regional and thematic encyclopedias. Thematic titles cover gender, science, medicine, trade and travel, Jewish and Islamic civilizations. Regions covered include England, Ireland, France, Iberia, Italy, and Germany. Available in print and/or in electronic format.

Cambridge Histories Online (Cambridge University Press)
Includes the New Cambridge Medieval History (8 vols.), the Cambridge History of Medieval Science, the Cambridge History of Medieval Philosophy (3 vols.), and the Cambridge History of Medieval Political Thought.

Brill's Medieval Reference Library Online
Encyclopedias on pilgrimage, the medieval chronicle, and medieval dress and textiles.

Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of the Global Middle Ages
Regional and thematic overviews and selected case studies from a global perspective. Of special interest for gender studies are the sections on queenship and family and kinship as well as the essays on Virgin Mary iconography.

Cambridge Companions Online (Cambridge University Press)
Includes companions to the writings of women, English culture, and Jewish philosophy in the Middle Ages.

Encyclopedia of Early Modern History (Brill)
Presents an interdisciplinary approach to early modern history from 1450 to 1850 with a mix of in-depth key articles and shorter subject treatments linked through cross references. The Encyclopedia offers unique central European viewpoints and voices with a strong focus on global connections.

Encyclopaedia Judaica
Provides an exhaustive and organized overview of all aspects of Jewish life from the Second Temple period to the contemporary State of Israel.

Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online
Focuses on the history of early Christian texts, authors, ideas.

Medieval History Reference Titles
Browse selected print and online encyclopedias and companions.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford University Press)
Presents authoritative biographies of influential people who lived in Britain. Covers only deceased subjects. Includes portraits, if available, and bibliographies with citations to works by and about featured individuals.


Much of the scholarly literature in the field is published in books which are often referred to as monographs. Find books in the Library’s collection with a Books & Media search. Start with keywords that describe your topic and use the hyperlinked subjects in the book records to reduce and focus search results. Notice facets such as topic and language which will further narrow results. Subject searches can significantly increase or decrease the number of results. For a more comprehensive review of the literature consult WorldCat and use the integrated Borrow from other libraries feature to request books which are not locally available.

  Falvey Library Catalog

  WorldCat (FirstSearch)

  Dissertations and Theses Global (ProQuest)

  EZBorrow and Interlibrary Loan

  Library of Congress Subjects

Experiment with keyword and subject searches for better results. Keywords are pulled from anywhere in the catalog record including the table of contents while subject terms are limited to the Library of Congress (LC) subject thesaurus. LC subjects can help with the discovery of books missed with a keyword search. For example, a simple keyword search for women and antiquity brings up a list with close to 400 matching publications. A closer look at the record for Women in Antiquity: Real Women Across the Ancient World reveals the hyperlinked LC subject “Women – History – To 500” which pulls up a different and much shorter list which in turn leads to the discovery of the Companion to Women in the Ancient World, an important work that was not part of the first list because the keyword antiquity does not occur in its catalog record.

Examples of Library of Congress subjects:
"Middle Ages" and "sex role"
"Sex role" and history and "to 1500"
Renaissance and gender
"Middle Ages" and women and saints
Renaissance and women and sources
"Middle Ages" and women and history and England and sources
Examples of keyword searches:
"Middle Ages" and gender
Renaissance and gender
medieval prostitution

 Book Reviews

  Book Review Digest Plus (EBSCO)

  Book Review Digest Retrospective, 1903-1982 (EBSCO)

  Book Review Index Plus (Gale)

  Articles & More Search

 Journal Articles & Book Chapters

The Library subscribes to a range of medieval studies journals including The Journal of Medieval History, Speculum, Traditio, Viator, and Medieval Encounters. Use the Journal & Article Finder or the Articles & more search option on the Library’s website to look up known references. Request articles from journals that are not part of the Library's collections through interlibrary loan. The journal databases listed here index the contents of most if not all medieval studies journals and are by far the best tools to discover articles published in these journals.

  International Medieval Bibliography (Brepols)

  Regesta Imperii: Literature Database for the Middle Ages (Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Literatur Mainz)

  Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index

  Iter Bibliography (University of Toronto)

  PubMed  Tutorial

  Historical Abstracts (EBSCO)

  Medieval Archaeology

  GenderWatch (ProQuest)

  RAMBI: The Index of Articles on Jewish Studies (National Library of Israel)

  Articles & More Search

 Selected Primary Sources in Translation

The Library’s collections include numerous transcribed, translated, and annotated primary sources as well as facsimile editions of primary sources. Author and subject searches are particularly helpful. Discover primary sources through the Books & Media search option on the Library’s website and use WorldCat to expand your search. Don't hesitate to ask for assistance if needed.

Bibliography of Works by and about Women Writers of the Middle Ages
Internet History Sourcebooks - Fordham University

Crusade Texts in Translation (Routledge)
The series provides a wide-ranging corpus of texts, most of them translated for the first time, concerned with the history of the crusades and the crusader-states.

Early English Books Online (ProQuest)  Tutorial
Early English Books Online (EEBO) contains digital facsimile page images of virtually every work printed in England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and British North America and works in English printed elsewhere from 1473-1700. For searchable text of selected titles see Early English Books Online -Text Creation Partnership.

Early English Books Online (Text Creation Partnership)  Tutorial
EEBO-TCP captures the full text of each unique work in EEBO. This is done by manually keying the full text of each work. The result is an accurate transcription of each work, which can be fully searched.

Epistolae: Medieval Women's Latin Letters (Columbia University)
Offers a collection of medieval Latin letters to and from women. The text of the letters is presented in the original Latin as well as in English translation. Biographical sketches of the women, descriptions of the subject matter of the letters, and the historical context of the correspondence are included where available.

Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index
Covers journal articles, book reviews, and essays in books about women, sexuality, and gender during the Middle Ages. Use the Advanced Search feature, click on More Searches for Texts, and type "Translation" into the Article Type search box. Add additional keywords as necessary.

Luminarium: Anthology of Middle English Literature (1350-1485)
This resource manages a collection of links to transcribed and/or translated texts by medieval English writers including the works of Chaucer, Julian of Norwich, Kempe, Malory, Lydgate, and others. The site also offers a collection of links to essays and articles authored by a variety of scholars including student essays.

Manchester Medieval Sources (Manchester University Press)
Offers access to a growing collection of translations of key primary sources. Series editors are Rosemary Horrox and Simon MacLean. Most volumes are also available in print.

Mediaeval Sources in Translation (Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies)
Published by the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies in Toronto. Only available in print.

Medieval and Early Modern Iberian World (Brill)
The series includes original monographs, article collections, editions of texts or documents, translations--on the peoples and cultures of medieval Christian, Jewish, and Islamic Iberia.

Medieval & Renaissance Texts & Studies (Arizona Center for Medieval & Renaissance Studies
The series includes translations, reference works, editions, monographs and essay collections.

Medieval Family Life (Adam Matthew Digital)
Presents digital copies of five family letter collections from late medieval England (1400-1490). Transcriptions are searchable and can be displayed alongside the color images of the original manuscripts. Also included are research tools including family trees, a glossary, separately indexed illustrations, an interactive map and a chronology.

Medieval History Texts in Translation (University of Leeds)
Almost all of the texts selected and edited for this project appear in English translation for the first time, and in some cases, the translation here is entirely new and has been made without reference to previous versions.

Medieval Iberian Peninsula: Texts and Studies (Brill)
Covers the medieval history and culture of Spain, with particular emphasis on Islamic history and relations between medieval Christians and Muslims. Continued as The Medieval and Early Modern Iberian World series.

The Medieval Mediterranean: People, Economies and Cultures, 400-1500 (Brill)
The series includes translations, editions, monographs and essay collections.

Medieval Texts in Translation (Catholic University of America Press)
Medieval texts in translation published by the Catholic University of America Press. Available in print and online.

Medieval Travel Writing (Adam Matthew Digital)
Features digital copies of manuscripts describing real and fictitious travel in the Middle Ages, dating from the 13th to the 16th centuries. The main geographic focus is the Holy Land, India, and China. Material types include manuscripts, printed books, illustrations, and maps. Most documents are in Latin, English, and French. Additional features include brief biographies of travelers, scholarly companion essays by experts in the field, a bibliography, PDF files for all documents, and supporting materials which include selected later editions and translations. Sourced from libraries and archives in the UK, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and the US.

Medieval Women: Texts & Contexts (Brepols)
This series features translated primary sources about women and/or written by women. Each volume includes introductions and extensive annotations by scholars to provide context. Selected volumes are available online.

Middle Ages (University of Pennsylvania Press)
The series includes translations, editions, monographs and essay collections.

Online Medieval Sources Bibliography
An annotated bibliography of printed and online primary sources for the Middle Ages hosted at Fordham University.

Perdita Manuscripts (Adam Matthew Digital)
Offers digital copies of writings by early modern women (1500-1700). The name of the collection, derived from the Latin word for “lost,” alludes to the ephemeral nature of women’s writings which were rarely published and widely shared. Genres represented in the collection range from poetry and religious writings to letters, recipes, and account books. Includes manuscript descriptions with partial transcriptions and detailed annotations where available. The collection is part of the Perdita Project. The manuscripts are held by libraries and archives in the US and UK. Includes pdf files for all manuscripts.

Peregrina Translation Series (Peregrina Publishing Co.)
Offers translated sources related to women's religious communities from 400-1600. Selected print copies are available locally. Peregrina Publishing Co. ceased publication of this series in 2004.

Readings in Medieval Civilizations and Cultures (University of Toronto Press)
Each print volume presents a collection of translated primary sources that focus on a theme or a period.

RELMIN (Institut du Pluralisme Religieux et de l'Athéisme - IPRA)  Tutorial  Access Instructions
Presents legal texts related to the status of religious minorities in the Euro-Mediterranean world (5th-15th centuries). The sources are presented in their original language (Latin, Arabic, Greek, Hebrew, etc.) together with English and French translations, notes, commentaries, and bibliographies.

Teaching Medieval Slavery and Captivity
Features medieval primary sources in translation.

Translated Texts for Historians E-Library (Liverpool University)
Provides full text English translations of historical sources from 300-800. Sources include histories, letters, annals, speeches, poems, church records, Christian treatises, and lives of saints. Volumes 1-67 are available online. Most titles are also available in print.