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History (British & West European) - overview of Oxford collections: Home & Contact

Purpose of this guide

This guide is intended for students and researchers at the University of Oxford who are interested in British and West European History. Students and researchers from related fields may find it useful.

Use this guide to find out about books and online resources for British and West European history, including ebooks, ejournals and bibliographic databases.

What we collect

The history collections aim to cover primary and secondary source material for the late Roman to the modern periods for British, Western European and some world history. Topical coverage includes social, political, economical, ecclesiastical, cultural history, etc. but also historiography, diplomatics and palaeography.

Historians benefit hugely from having access to the Bodleian Library's Legal Deposit collections as they have access to material not widely available. Read more about Legal Deposit and the recently enacted electronic Legal Deposit.

Principal collections

Teaching and research collections for British and Western European history are considerable at Oxford University. They are held primarily by the Bodleian Old Library and Radcliffe Camera (incl. History Faculty Library).

Through Legal Deposit and extensive purchasing, primary and secondary source materials are acquired as comprehensively as possible.

Research collections for Western European history are actively developed in the Bodleian Library to provide excellent coverage of both national and regional history, especially of France and Germany. Many monographs are also shelved in the Gladstone Link, which is located underground between the Old Library and the Radcliffe Camera.

The Radcliffe Camera has good collections of European history for teaching purposes.

Guides to resources:

Important electronic resources

All Oxford's libraries provide access to a wide range of networked electronic resources which can be access from both SOLO (Oxford's local discovery tool) and Databases A-Z. The key resources are listed below:

Reference & biographical resources

Bibliographic databases

Electronic full-text sources (selections)

Electronic full-text newspapers

A full listing of databases relevant to history is available in the History subject list in Databases A-Z.

Electronic journals

Most key history journals are now available electronically. JSTOR, OUP, CUP and Wiley will provide all back issues, while current issues are provided by some of the major publishers, such as Project Muse, Ingenta, etc. A full listing of e-journals is available in Oxford University e-Journals.

Other geographical areas

History of Slavonic and Central & East European countries (Bodleian Old Library, Taylor Institution Slavonic & Modern Greek Library, History Faculty Library, St Antony's College Library)

History of the USA (Vere Harmsworth Library, History Faculty Library)

History of Latin America (Bodleian Old Library, Latin American Centre Library, History Faculty Library)

History of sub-Saharan Africa, the Commonwealth & former British colonial territories (Weston Library, History Faculty Library)

History of the Middle East & North Africa (Bodleian Old Library, Nizami Ganja Library, Middle East Centre Library, History Faculty Library)

History of the Indian sub-continent (Bodleian Old Library, History Faculty Library)

History of China (Bodleian Old Library, K B Chen China Centre Library)

History of Japan (Japanese Library)


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Isabel Holowaty
Upper Reading Room, Room 2.03 (North / History end)
Bodleian Library, Broad Street
Oxford, OX1 3BG
01865 2-77294
Website Skype Contact: iholowaty
Subjects: History - British

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Finding Theses

Oxford Theses

Theses from other UK Universities: ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global (only partial full-text) [Oxford users only]

EThOS (British Library)

Institute of Historical Research History Theses: The IHR publishes a list of history theses as part of British History Online. Theses from UK universities completed between 1901 and 1970 and between 1970 and 2014 are now available. More information.