German Dissertations
Selections from the German Collection

Testimonies of the scholarly value of the collection: 

"I can personally testify to the importance of our library’s collection of German dissertations, Programmschriften and pamphlets in Classical Studies. In an article I published about a year ago  I discussed the ancient Greeks’ notion of an ancient Assyrian king by the name of Sardanapalus whose tombstone and epitaph Alexander the Great had encountered in the course of conquering the Persian empire (“Asianics in Relief: Making Sense of Bronze and Iron Age Monuments in Classical Anatolia,” The Classical Journal 112.2). As it happens, the earliest academic discussion of the ancients’ ideas about this figure was a lecture delivered in Latin at the University of Marburg and published as a pamphlet in 1880. That I could just pick up this publication from the stacks of our library and read is extraordinary," UC Professor Valeria Sergueenkova).

The Collection

The collection of some 18,000 German dissertations and school bulletins (featuring lectures given at graduation and holiday celebrations at German Gymnasia) in the John Miller Burnam Classics Library at the University of Cincinnati is unique among libraries in the United States, both for its size and for its long time span from the 17th to the early 20th century.  The collection is a cultural monument. 19th century humanistic scholarship is not only of vital importance for present day research in classics; it also represents an irreplaceable set of documents for western intellectual history. 

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Collection Selection
Digitization Project

The aim of this project is to digitize all c. 18,000 items and to provide detailed content analysis and metadata in English (the languages of the dissertations and school programs are mainly Latin, German, French, but also Greek, Sanskrit, Hebrew, and the Scandinavian languages and the font used is mostly German Fraktur).  This digitization project will greatly enhance online access to the digital version of the collection and facilitate their discovery and use by contemporary and future classicists as well as all others interested in classical antiquity and the history of classical scholarship.

Project Roadmap
Project Roadmap