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The Hulbert Taft, Jr. Library

Foundations: Islamic Empires and Civilizations: Primary Sources


Examples of primary sources for Islamic empires include written documents, works of art and architecture, literature, and artifacts such as tools, household objects and furnishings, clothing, weapons, coins, etc.

Find Primary Sources in Online Databases

Find Primary Sources on the Internet

SweetSearch, a search engine for students from, it searches only the 35,000 Web sites evaluated and approved by Dulcinea's staff of research experts, librarians and teachers.

Britannica Academic On your topic article page, find Web's Best Sites in the left sidebar to display sites selected by Britannica editors for quality and age-appropriateness

Internet History Sourcebooks Project (a web project with an extensive collection of primary source documents by Paul Halsall, Fordham University)


TO SEARCH GOOGLECombine your topic search term(s) with the phrase documents OR "primary sources" 

Google Web Search

See also 

See the course guide Find Primary Sources for more ways to locate documents in our library and online.

Find Primary Sources in RhinoCat

To find primary source material in books/ebooks and reference books/ebooks, follow these tips:

  • Look for the PS designation on the list of reserve books; it means the book contains primary source material. 
    • ‚ÄčLet us know if a book is missing the PS designation. We might have missed some!
  • To find primary sources by or about a person relevant to your topic in our catalog

    • Do an Author search using the name of a person relevant to your topic to find anything written by that person.
    • Do a Keyword search of your person's name to identify writings in anthologies and collections.
  • To find primary sources on your topic in our catalog

    • Paste the following exact word string into the RhinoCat basic keyword search box below:
      su,wrdl: personal narratives or su,wrdl: sources or su,wrdl: diaries and kw,phr: xxxxx
      • Substitute your broad topic or topic phrase for xxxxx

Search RhinoCat 


NoodleTools Citation Tips for Primary Sources

To cite a Primary Source, first choose the option that best describes where you found it: 

  • Database = a document found in a Taft Subscription Database such as Ancient and Medieval History or Britannica Academic
  • Website = a document on a website found through a search engine such as Google.
  • Print or In Hand = a document found in a book in the library. For example: in a reference book or a secondary source.

Next determine what kind of primary source you are citing: 

  • Look at the list of options in NoodleTools. Is it a newspaper article, a speech, a letter, or another item listed? If so, choose it. 
  • If you're not sure, you can use "Anthology / Collection" which enables you to cite a source found within another source.