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The Hulbert Taft, Jr. Library

Foundations: Islamic Empires: Encyclopedias and Reference Books / eBooks


START WITH REFERENCE SOURCES for the essential background information on your subject.

Examples of Reference Sources: Almanacs, atlases, bibliographies, dictionaries / thesauruses, encyclopedias, handbooks, and indexes.

The print and electronic sources below are encyclopedias and other reference sources that will give you a broad overview of your subject:

Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How

This will allow you to better understand where the specific information you find later fits in the bigger picture.

Online Subscription Databases

If you have any questions,

see Mr. Padgett or Ms. Taylor

OR email us at

We're here to help!

Book / eBook Reference Sources

Ref means these books are in the Reference Collection on the library's main floor. 

To ensure equitable access, Reference books may be used in the library only.

About Call Numbers

The call number tells you where you can find the print book.

The first part of the call number is the location; in this case, Ref, which means it is in the Reference collection on the library main floor. Other collections in the library include Main, Oversize, YA (for Young Adult), Youth (for Children's books), and Best (for Best Sellers).

  • For example: Atlas of the Islamic world since 1500Ref DS35.6 R6 1982

Books in the Reference collection and other library collections are arranged A - Z by subject, such as DS, which represents books about Asia.

  • Atlas of the Islamic world since 1500. Ref DS35.6 R6 1982

After the letters come numbers which further refine the subject: 35.6 represents books about the Islamic world.

  • Atlas of the Islamic world since 1500. Ref DS35.6 R6 1982

After the numbers comes another letter followed by a number and a year: R6 1982 represents the author of the book and the year the book was published.

  • Atlas of the Islamic world since 1500. Ref DS35.6 R6 1982

NoodleTools Tips for Citing Reference Sources

PLEASE NOTE: Do not copy and paste complete citations from electronic sources. NoodleTools cannot generate footnotes from copied and pasted citations.

To cite an encyclopedia / reference source, first choose the NoodleTools option that best describes where you found it:

  • Database = a Taft Subscription Database such as Gale eBooks.
    • Click on the citation tool on your article page to determine if you can export the Chicago-style citation directly to NoodleTools.
    • You must provide the permanent URL for your source. Look for any of the following on the page: permalink, persistent link, stable link, durable link, "Get link",Cite or Citable Link.
  • Website = an encyclopedia found through a search engine such as Google.
  • Print or In Hand = a book found on the shelves of the library's Reference Collection.

Next you will choose the type of source you are citing. In this case, Reference Source.

You will complete both parts of the Reference Source form:

  • information about the article you used: author, title of article, and page numbers if available.
  • information about the encyclopedia as a whole: author / editor, encyclopedia title, name of publisher, place of publication, and date of publication.
  • Information about a web encyclopedia: author of article (if given), title of article, the URL of the article you are citing, and the most recent date (date updated or date of online publication).

Note: Reference sources can also be cited in NoodleTools using the ISBN (International Standard Book Number) if provided. The ISBN can be found on the back cover of a book or on the back side of the title page. It can also be found in databases containing sources originally produced in print. If you don't find it, we can help you. Books published before about 1967 won't have an ISBN.

International Standard Book Number - Wikipedia

If you have any questions,  Mr. Padgett or Ms. Taylor are happy to help!