Biographical Resources

 Use biographical resources to discover facts, figures, and background information on a particular person. A flag symbol (such as: Bundesflagge) indicates that most or all of the text is in a Germanic language. Resources marked with a symbol indicates that users with a Harvard PIN number may access the resources from off-campus.

Biographical Portal
The Biographical Portal is a cooperative project of the Bavarian State Library, the Historical Committee at the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities, the Austrian Academy of Sciences, and the Foundation Historical Dictionary of Switzerland. A joint index makes available oever 160,000 scholarly biographies of persons from all social backgrounds and nearly all periods of German, Austrian, Swiss, and Slovenian history from the following works:

The NDB, and ÖBL are not yet complete and continue to be published in print. Further national and regional biographical works of reference are planned for future inclusion in the portal.

Biography Resource Center
This database provides electronic access to the full-text of nearly 800 well-known biographical reference works such as Marquis Who's Who, Contemporary Authors, Encyclopedia of World Biography, and the International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers.

Biography and Geneology Master Index
This index allows you to determine which publication to consult for biographical information. The index points to over 3,000 biographical reference books.

Deutsche biographische Enzyklopädie (DBE) Bundesflagge
Location: Widener Library Loker Reading Room
Call Number: RR 1786.5 v.1-12

Deutscher Biographischer Index Bundesflagge
Use this index to find the location of biographies in the Deutsches Biographisches Archiv. The electronic version of this index is included in the World Biographical Information System Online (WBIS)  (see below).
Location: Widener Library Atkins Reference Room
Call Number: RR 1786.3.2 v. 1 - 8 F (folio)

Deutsches biographisches Archiv Bundesflagge
Use the Deutsches Biographisches Index to find the microfiche number you need. Reference staff can help with fiche reader.
Location: Widener Library Atkins Reference Room
Call Number: Microfiche RR 10

Deutsches Literatur-Lexikon : biographisch-bibliographisches Handbuch Bundesflagge / edited by Wilhelm Kosch
Location: Widener Library Loker Reading Room
Call Number: RR 3329.4.1 - RR 3329.4.4

Dictionary of German Biography (DGB); DBE in English
Location: Widener Library Stacks
Call Number: WID-LC CT 759 .D4813 2001x

The Dictionary of Literary Biography (DLB)
This multi-volume set covers many categories of literary personages. Individual volumes include titles such as German Writers in the Age of Goethe: Sturm und Drang to Classicism, Nineteenth-Century German Writers, 1841-1900 and German Baroque Writers, 1661-1730.
Location: Widener Library Loker Reading Room
Call Number: RR 3129.5

Digitale bibliotheek voor de nederlandse letterkunde (DBNL): naslagwerken
The Digital Library for the Dutch Letters provides access to a large number of reference works, including the following biographical dictionaries and encyclopedias:

  • A.J. van der Aa, Nieuw biographisch, anthologisch en critisch woordenboek van Nederlandsche dichters, 1844-1846.
  • Wim van Anrooij, Ingrid Biesheuvel, Karina van Dalen-Oskam en Jan Noordegraaf, Bio- en bibliografisch lexicon van de neerlandistiek, 2004-.
  • G.J. van Bork en P.J. Verkruijsse, De Nederlandse en Vlaamse auteurs, 1985.
  • G.J. van Bork, H. Struik, P.J. Verkruijsse en G.J. Vis, Letterkundig lexicon voor de neerlandistiek, 2002.
  • G.J. van Bork, Schrijvers en dichters, 2003-.
  • F. Jos. van den Branden en J.G. Frederiks, Biographisch woordenboek der Noord- en Zuidnederlandsche letterkunde, 1888-1891.
  • M. Buisman J. Fzn., Populaire prozaschrijvers van 1600 tot 1815, 1960.
  • P.G. Witsen Geysbeek, Biographisch anthologisch en critisch woordenboek der Nederduitsche dichters, 1821-1827.

Österreichisches Biographisches Lexikon 1815-1950 (ÖBL) Bundesflagge
The "Austrian Biographical Encyclopedia 1815-1950" (ÖBL) covers important Austrian personalities who lived between the years 1815 and 1950. This includes personalities from all modern states that originally formed the Austrian-Hungarian empire. The ÖBL is part of "Austriaca," the online server of the Austrian Academy of Sciences.
Location: Pusey 3
Call Number: Aus 489.5

Wer ist wer (Current Edition) Bundesflagge
Location: Widener Library Loker Reading Room
Call Number: RR 1586.2 (English translation at RR 1586.4)

Wer ist wer (Earlier volumes) Bundesflagge
Location: Widener Library Stacks 4 East
Call Number: Ger 11750.16 (English translation at Ger 11750.66)

World Biographical Information System Online (WBIS)
WBIS is the most comprehensive biographical database with information on persons, families, and groups from all classes and professions, from all countries and regions of the world, from the 4th millennium BC to the 20th century. WBIS Online provides digital facsimile images of the publisher K.G. Saur's Biographical Archives on microfiche, which compile biographical articles from printed reference works published from the 16th to the 20th centuries. As yet, not all entries for individuals listed in the World Biographical Information System are linked to full text biographical entries. In most of these cases, the biographies will be found in the original microfiche edition of the World Biographical Archives, available in the Atkins Reference Room in Widener Library.

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