By Religious Tradition or Denomination

Biographical dictionaries, such as Dictionary of Catholic Biography, and subject encyclopedias, such as Encyclopaedia Judaica, limited to one religious tradition can be used to find biographical sketches.

Library of Congress call number ranges for each religious tradition can be used to find subject dictionaries/encyclopedias, and the specific call number ranges allocated to biography can help locate biographical dictionaries for that religious tradition in the reference collection. 

Below are some examples of useful subject and biographical dictionaries as well as some Library of Congress call number ranges that can be used to find additional resources.

Subject Encyclopedias

Judaism

Library of Congress subclass BM
Subject encyclopedia: Encyclopaedia Judaica [Ref. folio DS102.8.E496 1972a]
Biography BM 750-755

Islam

Library of Congress subclass BP
Subject encyclopedia: The Encyclopaedia of Islam [Ref. DS37.E523] (Note: This is an example of a subject encyclopedia that is not classified using the BP Islam classification, but DS History, Asia instead)
Biography BP 70-80

Buddhism

Library of Congress subclass BQ
Subject encyclopedia: Encyclopedia of Buddhism [Ref. BQ128 .E62 2004]
Biography BQ 840-999

Christianity

Library of Congress subclass BR
Subject encyclopedia: Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church [Ref. BR95 .O8 1997]
Biography BR 1690-1725

Biographical Dictionaries

Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexicon [Ref. BR1700.2.B38]
Dictionary of Catholic Biography [Ref. BX4651.2 .D4 1961]
Twentieth Century Dictionary of Christian Biography [Ref. BR1700.2 .T9 1995]
The Blackwell Dictionary of Evangelical Biography 1730-1860 [Ref. BR1640 .B53 1995]

Library of Congress call number ranges for Christian denominations can be used to find biographical dictionaries by religious tradition.

Catholic Church: Biography BX 4650-4705

Protestantism: Biography BX 4800-9999

Church of England: Biography BX 5197-5199

Baptists: Biography BX 6493-6495

Other denominations and denomination groups follow the Baptists in alphabetical order in BX.

The biographical sources mentioned here are only a small number of those available. For more information, contact a research librarian.

American Religious Biography

 

In addition to the resources mentioned elsewhere in this guide, consider using the following resources to find biographical sketches of individuals playing a role in the religious life in the United States.

The biographical sources mentioned below are only a small number of those available. For more information, contact a research librarian.

General

Dictionary of American Religious Biography [Ref. BL72 .B68 1993]

Religious Leaders of America: A Biographical Guide to Founders and Leaders of Religious Bodies, Churches, and Spiritual Groups in North America [Ref. BL72.M458 1999]

Specialized

African American Lives [Ref. E185.96.A446 2004]

African American Religious Leaders [Ref. BL72.A27 2003]

Biographical Dictionary of American Cult and Sect Leaders [Ref. BL2525.M447 1986]

Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions [Ref. BV3700.B56 1998]

Biographical Directory of Negro Ministers [Ref. BR563.N4 W5 1975]

Black Women in America: An Historical Encyclopedia [Ref. E185.86.B542 1993]

Dictionary of American Catholic Biography [Ref BX4670.D45 1984]

Encyclopedia of American Women and Religion [Ref BL2525.B45 1998]

Dictionary of Christianity in America [Ref. BR515.D53 1990]

Encyclopedia of Religion in the South [Ref. BR535.E52 1984]

Encyclopedia of Religion in American Politics [Ref. BL2525.E52 1999]

Encyclopedia of American Religion and Politics [Ref. BL2525.D58 2003]

International Dictionary of Pentecostal Charismatic Movements [Ref. BR1644.D53 2002]

Orthodox Judaism in America: A Biographical Dictionary and Sourcebook [Ref. BM750.S395 1996]

Conservative Judaism in America: A Biographical Dictionary and Sourcebook [Ref. BM750.N33 1988]

Reform Judaism in America: A Biographical Dictionary and Sourcebook [Ref. BM750.R39 1993]

The Religious Right: A Reference Handbook [Ref. BR526.U88 2001]

Twentieth-Century Shapers of American Popular Religion [Ref. BL 2525.T84 1989]

Christian Theologians

Below are some books in the Andover-Harvard Theological Library that include biographical sketches of Christian theologians:

Biographical Dictionary of Christian Theologians  BR95 .B575 2000]
A Handbook of Christian Theologians [Ref. BT28 .H33 1984]
A New Handbook of Christian Theologians [Ref. BT28 .N48 1996]
Twentieth Century Dictionary of Christian Biography [Ref. BR1700.2 .T9 1995]
Dictionary of Biblical Interpretation [Ref. BS500 .D5 1999]
Historical Handbook of Major Biblical Interpreters [Ref. BS501.A1 H57 1998]
Blackwell Encyclopedia of Modern Christian Thought [Ref. BR95 .B58 1993]
Handbook of Evangelical Theologians [Ref. BR1640 .H363 1993]
Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church [Ref. BR95 .O8 1997]
Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexicon [Ref. BR1700.2 .B38]
International Biographical Dictionary of Religion [Ref. BL72 .I57 1994]
Who's Who in Theology and Science [Ref. BL240.2 .W514 1996]