The Classics collection serves the needs of faculty and students in the Classics Department as well as a number of other departments across campus.

Current areas of collecting

Emphasis is on Greek Language and Literature; Latin Language and Literature; Greek and Roman History; ancient Philosophy; Greek, roman and Byzantine Archaeology, Epigraphy and Numismatics, print materials relating to Topography and Monuments of Greece and Rome. Less emphasis is on Life and Society of Classical Antiquity, Classical Myth and Religion, Applied Science and Technology in Classical Antiquity, Women in Antiquity.

Research and publishing characteristics

Classics is a composite of disciplines (philology, history, philosophy and archaeology), with a high emphasis on foreign language (particularly German) materials. Volume is low and average price is relatively high. All types of publication are essential: journals, monographs, conference proceedings, film, video and other visual materials for areas overlapping with Fine Arts; practical, textual materials for language and archaeology. Current and retrospective materials are of equal importance. Use of automation for research is now prevalent. The lengthy hiatus between archaeological discovery and the publication of scholarly comment is a particular problem.


Highest emphasis on English, German, French and Italian; selective coverage of other major European languages; primary source material in classical and Byzantine Greek, classical and Medieval Latin.

Geographic origin

Primarily North America and Europe.

Collections in other UBC Libraries/ Areas of overlap

Art, Architecture and Planning Library: Visual materials relating to topography and Monument; Town Planning, Architecture, Painting, Mosaics, Sculpture of Greece and Rome; Archaeology relating to Iconography, excavation of art objects (Jewelry, ceramics, vases, glass).

Law Library: Greek and Roman law.

Woodward Library: Ancient Medicine of the Classical World; physiological and public health aspects of social history.