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History: Medieval Studies: Research Help

This guide is intended to introduce you to helpful resources on the subject of Medieval and European History from 400 - 1450. You'll find available resources to help you get started with your research needs.

Searching for Books and Articles

To find books, articles and ejournals search the library's online catalog WorldCat or search Databases. Please check with librarians to see if any journals or magazines are held in the library.

First, try a simple keyword search such as Black Death. Keyword searches produce a large amount of results. This type of search is broad and less precise. Fortunately, most online catalogs and databases have features to help you refine your search terms. Refinement features may include author, year, format, content, audience, or sub-topics.

Creating a search strategy:

Next, try Boolean searching. This type of searching allows you to combine keywords using operators AND, OR, and NOT. 

To narrow your results use AND with two or more concepts. Example: Black Death AND Bubonic Plague

To broaden your search use OR with synonymous or related words or phrases. Example: Feudalism or Feudal Society  - This type of search expands the search so that you have one result or the other or both.

Sometimes one of your search terms may produce a list of results that includes articles that are not relevant to your topic. Using the operator NOT eliminates words from your search and reduces the number of results. Example: Medieval NOT Middles Ages. The term Middle Ages will be excluded from the search. 

Full-text Databases: refers to electronic resources with access to the complete text of articles in journals, books, newspapers, theses, dissertations, and more. Illustrations, graphs, charts, and images may be included.

Subject Headings

Subject Headings:

Art, Medieval
Byzantine Empire
Church history--middle ages, 600-1500
Council of Clermont (1095) -
Christian martyrs --
Crusades in literature
France--History--Philip II Augustus, 1180-1223
Great Britain - - History--Richard I, 1189-1199
Islamic Empire--History
Jerusalem--History--Latin Kingdom, 1099-1244
Knights and knighthood
Monasticism and religious orders--
Richard I, King of England, 1157-1199

English Literature

Civilization, Medieval, in Literature
Literature and society - England - History - to 1500
Literature, Medieval - History and Criticism

English History

England - Civilization - 1066-1485
Great Britain - History - Medieval period, 1066-1485

Chaucer Studies

Chaucer, Geoffrey - 1400 - criticism and interpretation
Chaucer, Geoffrey - 1400 - Canterbury Tales