Dictionaries and Encyclopaedias
The Library holds a large collection of general and subject-specific reference works such as dictionaries, encyclopaedias and yearbooks. To find them, search by Keyword in the Library Catalogue – e.g. encyclopaedia philosophy or dictionary chemistry. Remember to try alternative spellings (e.g. encyclopedia ,encyclopedias, dictionaries) as this will alter the number of results you get.
Print DictionariesThese are mainly held in the Reference Area on the ground floor, for use in the library only. Some language dictionaries may be borrowed from the Short Loan Collection, also on the ground floor.
Online Dictionaries (available to DCU community)Dictionary of Irish Biography
The Dictionary of Irish Biography, a collaborative project between Cambridge University Press and the Royal Irish Academy, is the most comprehensive and authoritative biographical dictionary yet published for Ireland. It contains 9,014 signed biographical articles which describe and assess the careers of subjects in all fields of endeavour, including politics, law, religion, literature, journalism, architecture, painting, music, the stage, science, medicine, engineering, entertainment and sport.
Oxford English Dictionary
The Oxford English Dictionary is widely acknowledged to be the ultimate authority on the English language. The largest dictionary of any language in the world, it charts the meaning and evolution of over 600,000 words over the last 1500 years.
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography tells the stories of over 50,000 people who shaped the history of the British Isles and beyond, from the earliest times to those who died in the year 2000.The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography also includes over 10,000 portrait illustrations.
Oxford Music Online
The Oxford Dictionary of Music: 12,500 entries on composers, performers, conductors, musical terms and forms, instruments, works, venues, and a host of other topics. It provides full-text access to:
Grove Music Online: includes The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, The New Grove Dictionary of Opera , and The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz.
The Oxford Companion to Music: More than 8,000 articles on range of subjects: composers, performers, conductors, individual works, instruments and notation, forms and genres.
Dictionaries freely available on the web
Japanese <-> English Dictionary Server
Rogets II Thesaurus
Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary
Wordsmyth: dictionary with an integrated Thesaurus
Digital Dictionaries of South Asia
Grand dictionnaire terminologique
: dictionary of terms from industry, commerce and science
Banque de dépannage linguistique:
teaching tool for French grammar, syntax, spelling, punctuation
BusinessDictionary.com: definitions of more than
20,000 business terms on a variety of topics, including
Accounting & Auditing.
online computer dictionary. Search for thousands of
NetLingo.com: tracks new
Internet terms and text and chat acronyms.
Most encyclopaedias are held in the Reference Area, but some are held in the Main
Lending Collection and are shelved in the relevant subject area on the first and
Online Encylopaedias (available to the DCU Community)
Routledge Encyclopaedia of Philosophy
REP covers Anglo-American, ethical and political, cross-cultural,
interdisciplinary, continental and contemporary philosophy. It includes over
25,000 hot-linked cross-references between articles and new links to other
editorially reviewed websites.
Oxford Art Online
Search four Oxford art resources together or separately:
- Grove Art Online is an art encyclopedia that includes the full text of more than 45,000 articles and over 5,500 searchable images some of which link to ARTstor.
- The Oxford Companion to Western Art contains more than 2,600 entries with reliable coverage of over 1,700 artists and their work.
- Encyclopedia of Aesthetics features articles by more than 500 globally recognised art historians, philosophers, and theorists.
- The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms provides 1,800 entries on art terms, critical periods, and styles in the visual arts.
Encylopaedias freely available on the web
Science and Engineering Encyclopedia
Key Reference Works online
Includes over 1 million entries across 25 subject areas from architecture to zoology. It offers the very best in quick reference information together with authoritative, in-depth articles by world-famous authors. It also offers excellent functionality, and a wide range of additional material such as maps, illustrations and timelines