World History Research Guide

World History Biographies

The best placed to search for a biographical material is in the Biography Reference area on level 3 near the General Reference Desk. This area contains hundreds of specialized biographical reference books for specific countries and areas of the world. It also contains many foreign language publications. You will find a list of general World History resources for biography below.

Biography Resources Online

Blackwell Dictionary of Historians. Oxford: Blackwell, 1988. [Soc Sci Ref: D 14 .B58].

Chambers Biographical Dictionary. Cambridge University Press, 1990. [Bio Ref: CT 103 .C4 1990]. Published since 1897, Chambers includes 19,000 entries with international scope.

Dictionary of International Biography. 1963-present. [Bio Ref: CT 101 .D5]. “A biographical record of contemporary achievement together with a key to the location of the original biographical notes.”

Encyclopedia of World Biography. Detroit: Gale, 1997. [Bio Ref: CT 103 .E56]. 18 vols. Originally published in 1973 by McGraw Hill, this set has 7,000 entries and thousands of photographs.

World History Research
Strategy Steps:

Guide Introduction
Choose a Topic
Find Background Information
Narrow Your Topic and Form a Research Question
Find Research Materials
Evaluate and Cite Sources
Formulate a Thesis Statement
Write the Paper

Great Historians from Antiquity to 1800. New York: Greenwood, 1989. [Soc Sci Ref: D 14 .G74].

Great Historians of the Modern Age. New York: Greenwood, 1991. [Soc Sci Ref: D 14 .G75].

Great Lives from History: Renaissance to 1900 Series. Pasadena, Calif.: Salem Press, 1989. 5 vols. [Bio Ref: CT 104 .G68]. Contains 2000-word biographies of people known in the arts and sciences, military, politics, philosophy, religion, business, and exploration. Contains 481 entries.

International Dictionary of 20th-Century Biography. New York: American Library, 1987. [Bio Ref: CT 103 .V38 1987]. This dictionary provides over 5600 entries of important historical or famous persons who lived in the 20th Century.

International Who’s Who. London: Europa, 1935-present. [Bio Ref: CT 120 .I5]. Also available on CD-Rom at General Reference Desk.

Lifelines: Famous Contemporaries from 600 B.C. to 1975. New York: Facts on File, 1982. [Bio Ref: CT 104 .W45 1982].

Merriam-Webster’s Biographical Dictionary. Springfiled, Mass.: Merriam-Webster, 1995. [Bio Ref: CT 103 .M47 1995]. A revision of Webster’s New Biographical Dictionary, 1988, it includes 30,000 eminent or noteworthy men and women of the past from all parts of the world and all periods of history.

People in World History: An Index to Biographies in History Journals and Dissertations Covering All Countries of the World. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, 1989. 2 vols. [Bio Ref: CT 104 .P46x].

Research Guide to European Historical Biography, 1450-Present. Washington, D.C.: Beacham, 1992. 8 vols. [Bio Ref: CT 759 .R47x 1992].

Who’s Who in the World. Chicago: Marquis Who’s Who, 1972-present. [Bio Ref: CT 120 .W5].