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Religious Studies

Guide to key sources for research in Religion

Finding Sacred Texts and Primary Sources

To locate bibles in the library collection, select advanced search option below the library search box and  enter terms such as  "Bible. O.T.  English" limited to the title field or browse the title field in the classic catalogue by:  Bible. O.T.   or Bible. N.T.  or  Bible.  English. (and name of the version) for example - Bible.  English .  New American Standard.



Key English editions are:


 Note see Religious Studies Web guide for links to free bibles on the web. 




Mahayana Texts Translated into Western Languages: a bibliographical guide
Call Number: BQ 7380 P42 1983 | Location:

Bibliography of Translations from the Chinese Buddhist Canon into Western Languages
- good guide to where translations of specific texts can be found in books, theses and journal articles

The History of Buddhist Thought -  see Appendix I  pp. 261-87 "The Scriptures"

Critical Pali Dictionary -  See section B. Bibliography


Buddhist Canonical Text Collections held by the University of Calgary Library  or available through the Internet arranged by language:

Overview of the Pali, Chinese and Tibetan Canons



  • Da Zang Jing. Taibei Xian Xinzhuang Shi: Chuan zheng you xian gong si(Qianlong Da zang jing), 2002
    169 v. (BQ 1210 Q27 2002)  Location
  • Da Zang Jing (Nihon Kotei Daizokyo). Tokyo: Tokyo Shoin, 1880-1885. 418 v. in 40 cases (BQ 1210 1880) Location
  • Da Zang Jing. Tokyo: Society for the Publication of a Taisho Edition of theTripitak, 1924-1932. 85 v. (BQ 1210 T35)  Location
  • Ta tsang ching (Wan hsu tsang ching). Taipei: Hsin wwen feng ch'u pan kung ssu, 1983.  150 v. and index (BQ 1210 T33 1983)  Location
  • Ta tsang ching (Tun-huang). Taipei: Chien ching chu pan she, 1989- 63 v. (BQ 1210 1989).  Location
  • Ta tsang ching/The Taisho Shinshu Daizokoyo. Tokyo: The Taisho shinshu daizokyo kanko kai, repr 1962, 1924. 100 v. (BQ 1210 T33 1924).  Location
  • Taisho Shinshu Daizonkyo/Taisho Tripitaka - digitial version produced by the Association for Computerization of Buddhist Texts
  • Da zheng xin xiu da zang jing/Taisho Tripitaka. Taibei: Chinese Buddhist Electronic Text Association, 2000-, v. 1-55 and 63-73; 78-87 issued in 2 discs. (BQ 1210 .T332)   Location


  • BDK English Tripitaka. Berkeley, Numata Center for Buddhist Translation and Research, 1992-  Call Number: BQ 1212 E5 B85 - based on the Taisho Shinshu Daizokyo.   Available volumes and location
  • Access to Insight - Pali canon in English - not yet completed



  • Pali Tipitaka in Roman Letters. London: Pali Text Society, 1882- (incomplete) (see Library Catalogue under individual titles/authors or by the series:Sacred Books of the Buddhists and Text Series (Pali Text Society).
  • BUDSIR Mahidol University Computing Center. Pali Tipitaka in Romanized Pali, Thai, Devanagari and Singhalese. Just need to register to have access to this.
  • Pali Tipitaka published by the Vipassana Research Institute. We have the Digha Nikaya in 11 volumes (BQ 1295 N36 1993). Text is available Online download the Pali font to view the text
  • Nalanda Devanagari Pali Series - we have selected volumes
  • Dhammagiri Pali Granthamala - we hold 40 volumes
  • Sri Lanka Tripitaka Project - romanized Pali


  • Bibliotheca Buddhica. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, reprint 1992, 1897-1915. 30 volumes. (BQ 118 .B53)  Location
  • Gilgit manuscripts. Delhi : Sri Satguru Publications, 1984. 4 vol. in 9 parts PK 3591 D87 1984  Location



  • Tibetan Tripitaka, Sde dge, Bstan hgyur. (Tanjur) Dbu ma. Tokyo: Sekai Seiten Kanko Kyokai, 1977- 1979. 17 v. (BQ 1270 1977).  Location
  • Tibetan Tripitaka, Sde dge, Bstan hgyur. (Tanjur) Sems tsam. Tokyo: Sekai Seiten Kanko Kyokai, 1979- 1981. 16 v. (BQ 1270 1979). Location
  • Tibetan Tripitaka, Sde dge, Bstan hgyur. (Tanjur) Tshad ma. Tokyo: Sekai Seiten Kanko Kyokai, 1981- 1989. 20 v. (BQ 1270 1981). Location
  • Lhasa Kanjur. Tibetan. Stony Brook, New York: Institute for Advanced Studies of World Religions, 1979. 2465 microfiche (BQ 1260 A1). Location
  • Cone Tanjur. Stony Brook, New York: Institute for Advanced Studies of World Religions, n.d. 2226 microfiche (BQ 1270 I57). Location
  • The Tibetan Tripitaka. Taipei, Taiwan: SMC Publishing, 1991- 72v. (BQ 1250 B37 1991). Location
  • Asian Classics Input Project - Kangyur, Tengyur and Sungbum texts displayed in romanized Tibetan and in Tibetan characters.

See also:

List of Buddhist Texts from the Library of Luminary Buddhist Institute


Primary Text Microfilm Collections:

  • IASWR Buddhist Sanskrit Manuscripts(BQ 1100 B83 1971) Location  - Rare Buddhist manuscripts arranged by LMhj number as well as MBB or WGS number. 

 Available indexes:

1) First 19 fiche provide a descriptive catalogue of the collection. Items are listed in numerical order by MBB number. The descriptive catalogue pt. 1 does begin with an alphabetical title listing. We also have an alphabetical title list on fiche.

2) Buddhist Sanskrit Manuscripts: a title list of the Institute for Advanced Studies of World Religions (BQ 1130 B82 1975) Location. Titles are arranged by MBB, WGS and CSG numbers.

  • Tibetan Religious Works: P.L. 480 / SFC Collection (BL 1945 T5 T53 1972) Location: Tibetan extra-canonical texts that became available when Tibetans fled from Tibet to India where they producd the literaure in book form. Arraanged by LMpj number and R or SB number.

Available indexes:

1) author catalogue on first 22 fiche of the collection. Consists of catalog cards with the LMpj and/or R number written on the left-hand side of the card.

2) A Catalogue of the United States Library of Congress Collection of Tibetan Literature in Microfiche (BL 1945 T5 L52 1983 )  Location -  provides author arrangement. Volume 1 gives R or SB numbers; volume 2 lists SB or LMpj numbers and contains an index by major series.

3) First Cummulative Dictionary Catalog of Tibetan Works in the Library of the Institute for Advanced Studies of World Religions (BQ 7610 R63 1985)  Location  - provides author, title and subject index to selected works in the libray of the IASWR. The LMpj number is provided for those works in the microfiche collection.

4) PL 480 Microfiche Edition of Tibetan Literature OnlineSearch - can search by key word using Wylie transcription system for Tibetan characters.

5)Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center -  Can search or browse through the digitized Tibetan texts (over 40,000 works are in the database).  Full text  digital copies are available at a nominal charge from the Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center.  For some of the texts the PL 480 number is noted.

Indexes to the Puranas:


Epic and Pur¯a·nic bibliography : (up to 1985) : annotated and with indexes  2 vols
Call Number: BL 1140.29 .E65 1992   | Location 
Brahmapur¯a·na : summary of contents, with index of names and motifs
Call Number: BL 1140.4 .B749 S64 1989 | Location


  • Texts  in the Library Collection:
    Bhagavad Gita
    See also series such as: Sacred Books of the Hindus, Clay Sanskrit Library
  • Sacred Texts on the Web
  • Political Pamphlets from the Indian subcontinent (microfiche) (JQ 298 A1 P64 1990) Location
    Over 2,000 English language pamphlets from 1915 to 1985, includes mainstream and fringe political publications (polemical tracts, policy statements, propaganda etc.).  See  reel guide for details of contents.   Library has holds a print copy of the reel guide
  • University of Pennsylvannia Indic Manuscripts (microfiche) [Set I-IV; VII-VIII] (PK 81 I56 1972) Location
    - Microedition of the University of Pennsylvannia's collection of Indic manuscripts. This is one of the largest collecitons in the United States and Canada.  It is arranged by  sets; each fiche has LMhj number and a UP number but the fiche are not organized according to either number.  

    Indexes to this collection:

    1) A Census of Indic Manuscripts in the United States and Canada/ compiled by Poleman (PK 81 I52 1938 - Location - provides author, title and subject access. Entries indicate which libraries hold the item and provide UP numbers for those held by the University of Pennsylvannia. Limited usefulness as many of the manuscripts in the collection are not listed in Poleman's work and because the manuscripts are not arranged according to any numerical sequence.

    2) A Union List of Printed Indic texts and Translations in American Libraries / compiled by Emeneau (PK 2902 U54 1935 - Location) This work provides author,title and subject indexing and indicates if the University of Pennsylvannia holds the item.

    3) Last 3 fiche contain an incomplete description catalog but do not provide access to the fiche.

    4) University of Pennsylvania has compiled a prelimary list of  indic manuscripts according to Penn No. is available at this site. The University of Pennsylvania has also begun digitizing some of the manuscripts. The Table of the Electronic Indic Manuscripts lists titles by major division and subdivision.

    5) See also University of Pennsylvannia Library Sanskrit Manuscripts for a number of manuscripts which have been made available in electronic form.
  •  Medieval India: Researchers in the History of India 1200 -1750 (4 volumes)
     Call Number:  DS 452 M422 | Location
     - includes essays and selected historical documents are reproduced

English translations of the Koran can be found by using the library search box.  Select advanced search and search for "Koran. English" in title

Library holds a number of Arabic/English texts including:

Holy Qur'an: Arabic Text and English Translation - Location

Quran: The Final Testament: Authorized English Version with the Arabic text/ translated by Rashad Khalifa -  Location


See also Religious Studies Web Guide list of free versions on the web.


  • JPS Hebrew-English Tanakh - Location
  • Torah  (Five books of Moses, also called the Chumash and the Pentateuch)
     The Torah: a Modern Commentary Location



  • Soncino Hebrew English Talmud Location
  • The Talmud: the Steinsaltz Edition  Location
  • Jerusalem Talmud -  Talmud of the Land of Israel -   Location
  • Soncino Bablyonian Talmud  - Translated into English by Dr. I Epstein, reformatted by Reuven Bruaner


American Culture Series 1493 to 1875 (E 169.1 A47) 3LT-MFILM 
-  This includes sermons and religious treatise

Collections from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America Library (3LT-MFILM) - consult reel guides for list of titles  included in each collection.  For searches for specific manuscripts, search the Jewish Theological Seminary of America Library  Catalogue  - many of the manuscripts are available fulltext through JTS.  (note you are looking for works with manuscript (scroll    icon) as the format type) -  Record the manuscript number at the top of the detailed record for the item. Locate the appropriate reel  guide and then look up the digits in the manuscript number to identify which reel contains the work.  (Reel guides are arranged by  the manuscript number) 

D'Holbach et Ses Amis (BL 2773 H75 1972) 3LT-MFICH
 French anticlerical and antireligious publications from the 18th century
 Consult reel guide for further information

Index Iconologicus, 1250-1940 (NE 90 I52 1980) 3LT-MFICH
  Focuses on Christian and secular aspects of art and literature. Includes photographic reproductions of art as well as historical and   bibliographical information.
  Consult reel guide for further information

Oneida Community [microform]: Books, Pamphlets and Serials, 1834-1972 (HX 656 O5 O56 1973) 3LT-MFILM
 Material by and about the Oneida Community. See the University of Syracuse for general information about this collection and  for  Finding Aids and some texts that have been digitized.
 See also reel guide for further information

Shaker Collection of the Western Reserve Historical Society, 1723-1952: Manuscripts and Printed Materials (BX 9759 W47)  3LT-MFICH
  See also reel guide for further information

Utopian Literature, Pre 1900 Imprints (HX 810 U86 1982) 3LT-MFICH
  See reel guide for index to contents of this collection


Artemis -  Discovery tool for  eight databases of primary resources covering the 18th and 19th centuries including: Eighteenth
  Century Collections
 - digital version of works published between 1701-1800 , Nineteenth Century Online and the Making of the   Modern Law.

British and Irish Women's Diaries Online - covers 450 years

Early English Books Online

ehraf - Includes studies on religious beliefs and practices for a variety of world cultures

Making of the Modern World -  Digital facsimiles of literature on economics and business published from the last half of  the 15th century to the mid-19th century

Thomason Tracts, 1640-1661 -  To browse list of works select browse and then select "Thomason Tracts" from the menu bar   at the top or on the advanced search page - limit UMI collection to Thomason Tracts.
  Documents dissent, nearly everything published in England and the continent from 1640-1661.
  - Also available on microfilm - DA 370 T46 1981 3LT-MFILM

Women and Social Movements in the United States 1600-2000


Consult Special Collections for rare canons and texts


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