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Ancient Near Eastern Studies: Home

The Art, Archaeology and Ancient World Library is the premier research library for Ancient Near Eastern Studies at the University of Oxford. It incorporates the libraries previously housed in the Griffith Institute and the Ashmolean Museum.
Subjects: Ancient Near East

Purpose of this guide

This guide is intended for students and researchers studying Ancient Near Eastern Studies at the University of Oxford, although students and researchers from any field may find it useful.

Use this guide to find out about books, journals and electronic resources for Ancient Near Eastern Studies, including ebooks, ejournals and databases. 

Study skills

The OXF_Study skills resources reading list gives a sample of available books, documents and videos on study skills that you may find helpful. Many titles are available as ebooks or can be borrowed from Oxford libraries.

You may find other relevant titles available on SOLO, and you can suggest books you would like the Bodleian Libraries to purchase via the link below. You can also contact your college library to suggest books you would like them to purchase.

Finding books on Ancient Near Eastern Studies

Oxford has the best collection for printed books on Ancient Near Eastern Studies in the British Isles and also offers access to a growing collection of ebooks on this subject. The physical books are held by the Art, Archaeology and Ancient World Library as well as the Bodleian Library, and anyone studying or researching Ancient Near Eastern Studies in Oxford should expect to make use of both libraries.

Apart from these two major research libraries, Wolfson College Library holds the Jeremy Black Collection in Ancient Near Eastern Studies. It welcomes qualified students and researchers to consult the collections during library staff hours. 

More information on finding books on Ancient Near Eastern Studies can be found on the Books page.

New Acquisitions Lists

On a monthly basis the Art, Archaeology and Ancient World Library publishes it's new accessions, inc monographs, journals and off-site material, in the form of New Acquisitions Lists on the the Library's 101 Blog. The new items are arranged by floor / collections. Most material for Ancient Near Eastern Studies is kept on F1 (= Floor 1) and in HA (= Haverfield Room), and the locations appear in the lists to the left of each entry. Related material can be found on all floors of the Art, Archaeology and Ancient World Library.

Key journals

The full range of Ancient Near Eastern Studies journals, in print and, where available, in electronic format (eformat), can be searched via SOLO or the eJournals A-Z. Below are the top journals for Ancient Near Eastern Studies, and you find more information about periodicals on the Journals page of this guide.

Key databases

Oxford subscribes to many databases. For Ancient Near Eastern Studies you can additionally access a number of subject-related databases freely online. Below, you find a few key databases, and many more are listed in the databases and online resources pages of this guide. A larger selection of subject-related databases can be found on the Bodleian Libraries' Databases A-Z.

ARCHIBAB is an online corpus of Old Babylonian texts. An introductory tutorial on how to search this database is posted on YouTube:

The aim of this project is to expand the Nineveh-focused State Archives of Assyria online (SAAo) corpus by creating a complete, open-access corpus of Neo-Assyrian archival texts. Unlike SAAo, the linguistical-annotated texts in the ATAE corpus are arranged by their provenance and the archive in which they were unearthed.

Online Assyrian Dictionary of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago.

The BDTNA is a searchable electronic corpus of Neo-Sumerian administrative cuneiform tablets dated to the 21st century B.C.

The ETCSL comprises a selection of nearly 400 literary compositions recorded on sources which come from ancient Mesopotamia and date to the late third and early second millennia BCE.

The KeiBi is a searchable database for publications on cuneiform texts.

ORACC hosts many subprojects with catalogues of cuneiform corpora, inc transliterations and translations of ancient texts.

The Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary Project is preparing an exhaustive dictionary of the Sumerian language which aims to be useful to non-specialists as well as Sumerologists. In addition, we are developing tools and datasets for working with the Sumerian language and its text-corpora.

State Archives of Assyria online is an open-access web resource that aims to make the rich Neo-Assyrian materials found in the royal archives of Nineveh, and elsewhere, more widely accessible.

Other online library catalogues

Whilst collections and resources are focused on the Bodleian Libraries' collections, the following online library catalogues can be useful for locating copies in collections in the UK and Ireland as well as in collections worldwide:



Bodleian Art, Archaeology and Ancient World Library
1 St John Street

Newsletter for Assyriology at the University of Oxford

This termly Newsletter informs you about upcoming lectures, news, people, funding deadlines and student activities, all related to Assyriology at The University of Oxford.

Related Oxford University Institutions

The Ashmolean’s Ancient Near Eastern collections are among the finest in the world, ranging in date from the earliest farming communities of the tenth millennium BC to the spread of Islam in the seventh century AD, and including the second largest collection of cuneiform tablets in the UK. An overview of the recently refurbished gallery is given by its curator Paul Collins.

The Griffith Institute is the heart of Egyptology and Ancient Near Eastern Studies, located at the University of Oxford for over eighty years.

The University of Oxford's dedicated centre for research into the history, languages and cultures of Azerbaijan, the Caucasus and Central Asia from antiquity to modern times.

Founded in 1884 the Pitt Rivers Museum houses the archaeological and anthropological collections of the University of Oxford. The Photographs of Arabia by Wilfred Thesiger are preserved in the Pitt Rivers Museum.