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Ancient Near East and Egyptological collections

Collection Details

Ancient Near East and Egyptological collections held at Information Services: Main Library [Institution record]

Description of Collection

Content description

The collection comprises printed material, ie books, periodicals and archaeological reports. The majority of the collection is in English, but there is a wide range of material in other European languages, and facsimiles of inscriptions in ancient languages. The material relates to the period from ancient Egypt to the fall of Byzantium (BC 3400 to AD 638) and is published from the mid 19th century to the present day, with the majority of the collection acquired in the first half of the twentieth century.

History and development

The materials described here are from the Main Library, which is a large general academic library collection, developed to support university research and teaching in archaeology.


Strengths include reports from the earliest modern excavations in Egypt, and language inscriptions and interpretations from the ancient near east.

General arrangement and access regulations

Most of the material is on open access, arranged using the Library of Congress classification, but some less-used material is in Store (available within one working day, on request).

Subjects of the Collection

Regions of Asia

Near & Middle East and North Africa.


Egypt, Ethiopia, Iraq, Sudan, Syria.

Languages of material

Akkadian, Egyptian (Ancient), English, French, German, Hittite, Sumerian, Syriac.


Anthropology, Archaeology, Arts, History, Language, Religion.

Languages as linguistic focus

Akkadian, Aramaic, Coptic, Egyptian (Ancient), Indo-European (Other), Sumerian, Syriac.

Collection Material and Size of Collection

Material Types

Archival materials (includes non-published & mixed material), Audio materials (includes cassettes & CDs), Books, Serials, Theses.

Total size of collection

Approx 10,000 volumes

Size of collection - vernacular

3,000 volumes

Size of collection - western

7,000 volumes

Collection Management Information

The collection is being actively developed, and the average intake has stayed the same.

Annual intake

400 volumes

Content date range

1840 to present

Interlibrary loan procedure

Collection Catalogue Information


The online catalogue lists all periodicals and all printed books acquired from 1972 onwards. Many older books are on the online catalogue, but a (steadily decreasing) proportion of older stock is listed in card catalogues. New catalogues of archive and manuscript collections are regularly added to the online archive catalogue as they are completed. These include not only catalogues of newly catalogued collections but also catalogues for existing collections for which previously there had not been a catalogue in electronic format. However, as catalogues of many of our collections are still not yet available online, for more information about our holdings of archives and manuscripts researchers are advised to consult the Guide to Archives and Manuscripts on the Special Collections web site at:

Catalogue transliteration schemes

Library of Congress (Arabic), pinyin (Chinese), ALA-LC Romanisation - modified (Greek), Library of Congress paradigm (Japanese), Korean Government new Romanization paradigm (Korean)

Catalogue scripts


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