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Guide to resources for the modern languages, literatures, and cultures of Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.

Electronic Dictionaries and Encyclopedias

Bilingual Dictionaries

You can find dictionaries for use in the library in the reference collection on the first floor.  Some dictionaries are also available for checkout in the circulating collection on B2.  Here are the call number ranges if you want to browse


English         PE 1628

French          PC 2640

Italian           PC 1625

Spanish        PC 4640

German        PF 3625

Chinese        PL 1455

Japanese      PL 678

Greek             PA 445

Latin              PA 2365

Arabic             PJ 6640

Persian          PK 6379

Russian         PG 2640

Dictionaries and Handbooks of Literature and Literary Terms (PRINT)

 Abrams, M. H.  A Glossary of Literary Terms.  6th ed.  Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1993.

Arranged as brief essays.  Use index.  REF PN 44.5 .A2 1993

Benet's Reader's Encyclopedia.  Harper & Row 1996.  

Handy one volume guide to authors, titles, classical allusions, historical events, and all sorts of other terms and phrases a reader might need defined or explained.

REF PN 41 .B4 1996 (Research Commons)

Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable.Harper & Row, 1989. 

Brief explanations of terms and phrases from mythology, religion, history, literary classics, etc.  REF PN 43 .B65 1989


Encyclopedia of Critics and Criticism. 2 vols. Fitzroy Dearborn. Ed. Chris Murray. 1999.

Essays on ideas of literary philosophers from Plato to the present. REF PN 45 .C74 1987

 Dictionary of Literary Themes and Motifs.  ed. Jean-Charles Seigneuret.  Greenwood Press, 1988.

Substantial signed essays, some with bibliographies.  Don't overlook indexes in second volume. REF PN 43 .D48 1988

Dupriez, Bernard.   A Dictionary of Literary Devices:  Gradus, A-Z.  Univ. of Toronto, 1991.

Devoted to explaining and providing examples of rhetorical terms and devices. (e.g. "epanidiplosis"). REF PN 172 .D813 1991 

Harper Handbook to Literature.  ed. Northrup Frye.  Harper & Row, 1985.

Useful guide to terms, titles, persons, etc.  Extensive chronology in appendix. REF PN 41 .F75 1985

Madden, David.  A Primer of the Novel for Readers and Writers.   Scarecrow Pr.     2006.

Short, explanatory essays on important technical terms, sub-genres, aspects of criticism.

REF PN 3353 .M25 2006

 Myers, Jack and Michael Simms.  Longman Dictionary of Poetic Terms.  Longman, 1989.

Brief explanations/examples of critical terms.  Useful Appendices classify terms by topic or type  (i.e. rhetorical, poetic, logical). REF PN 1042 .M94 1989  

Preminger, Alex, ed.  New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry & Poetics. 3 rd. ed  Princeton University Press, 1993.

Includes about 1,000 individual entries ranging from twenty words to several pages dealing with the history, theory, technique, and criticism of poetry from all periods.  International in scope, with special articles on poetry of various nationalities and ethnic groups.  REF PN 1021 .N39 1993

Williams, Miller.   Patterns of Poetry:  An Encyclopedia of Forms. 

Explanations of metrical and stanzaic patterns.  Thorough and clear. REF PN 1042 .W514 1986