Religion & Ancient Classics

This page contains the following sections:

  1. Classical civilisation
  2. Christianity, the Bible and literature
  3. Judaism
  4. Islam

1. Classical Civilisation

Ulysses (2nd cent BC)

The most readily available Classical texts can be found in the Oxford World’s Classics and Penguin Classics series. The volumes in the Loeb Classical Library include the Greek or Latin text and a facing English translation.

France, Peter. The Oxford Guide to Literature in Translation. Oxford University Press, 2000.  A good place to begin if you want to find the best editions of works translated into English.

Grafton, Anthony, et al. The Classical Tradition. Belknap Press, 2010. Over 500 articles on the legacy of Greece and Rome.

Hard, Robin, and Herbert Jennings Rose, eds. The Routledge Handbook of Greek Mythology. Routledge, 2004.

Rivers, Isabel. Classical and Christian Ideas in English Renaissance Poetry. 2nd ed. Routledge, 1994. An excellent book on topics that students often need help with.

Databases

New Pauly Online. Advanced Classical encyclopedia.

Oxford Reference. Includes The Oxford Companion to Classical Literature as well as the more technical Oxford Classical Dictionary (OCD).

*Perseus Digital Library. Classical texts in translation.


2. Christianity, the Bible and Literature

Crain, Jeanie C. Reading the Bible as Literature: An Introduction. Polity, 2010. A straightforward book and a good place to begin.

Hass, Andrew, et al., eds. Oxford Handbook of English Literature and Theology. Oxford University Press, 2009.

Helmer, Christine et al. eds. Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception Online. De Gruyter, 2014. As its title suggests, it deals with the Bible in itself, but it also deals with its later reception.

Jeffrey, David Lyle, ed. A Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature. Eerdmans, 1992. An excellent reference work which lists people and episodes from the bible and where they turn up in the history of English literature.

Lemon, Rebecca. The Blackwell Companion to the Bible in English Literature. Wiley-Blackwell, 2009. Deals with the influence of the Bible on literature from the middle ages to the twentieth century. Most of the modern sections are arranged author by author.

Marshall, Peter. The Oxford Illustrated History of the Reformation. Oxford University Press, 2015.

Rivers, Isabel. Classical and Christian Ideas in English Renaissance Poetry. 2nd ed. Routledge, 1994. An excellent book on topics that students often need help with.

Databases

*Bible Gateway. The Bible in many languages and versions.

Raphael, The Fall

*Biblical Art on the Web.

*The Catholic Encyclopedia (1917). This is very useful for pre-twentieth century information on European Christianity. Note that it is out of date about modern Catholicism and the text has an explicit religious bias.

Oxford Handbooks Online: Includes handbooks on apocalyptic literature, atheism, religion and the arts, Luther and the reception history of the Bible.

Oxford Reference. The Religion section contains:

  • A Dictionary of Popes;
  • A Dictionary of the Bible (brief entries for quick reference);
  • The Oxford Companion to the Bible (more detailed);
  • The Oxford Dictionary of Saints;
  • The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Reformation.

3. Judaism

Berenbaum, Michael, and Fred Skolnik, eds. Encyclopaedia Judaica. 2nd ed. 22 vols. Macmillan Reference, 2007.

Oxford Handbooks Online: Includes handbooks onJewish studies and Holocaust studies.

Oxford Reference. The Religion section contains A Concise Companion to the Jewish Religion and The Oxford Dictionary of the Jewish Religion.


4. Islam

Esposito, John L. ed. The Oxford Dictionary of Islam. Oxford University Press, 2003. In Oxford Reference (for readers with little or no previous knowledge of the topic).

Fleet, Kate et al. eds, Encyclopedia of Islam. 3rd ed. Brill.

Martin, Richard C., ed. Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World. 2 vols. Macmillan Reference, 2004. In Gale Virtual Reference Library.

McAuliffe, Jane Dammen, ed. Encyclopaedia of the Qur’an. 6 vols. Brill, 2006. In Gale Virtual Reference Library.