Collections and services


From Abraham to Zarathustra, access to humanity’s spiritual treasure.

Religion: books and journals

The City of God and the earthly city. Boethius. Beginning of Book XI.

The City of God and the earthly city. Boethius. Beginning of Book XI.

The largest collections of books and journals on religion can be found at the François Mitterrand Library (Site François-Mitterrand). They consist of reference works and a collection of key and founding texts, and include the following:
  • overview materials and encyclopedias and dictionaries specializing in the various different religions
  • the major sacred texts in ancient and modern languages, together with study materials and commentaries (the Bible, the Koran, the Talmud, the Vedas, the Upanishads, etc.) 
  • materials on the history of religion, religious orders, and historical and contemporary movements 
  • a choice of ancient and modern works covering the various Christian confessions (Catholic, Protestant, Anglican, and Orthodox), religions of Antiquity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, etc. 
  • a collection of materials on esotericism and secret societies (including in particular Freemasonry)
The Reference library’s collections include reference works and a collection of key ancient and modern texts for each religion. Popularization materials facilitate an initial approach to the discipline. Also available for consultation in the Reference library are journals of a level accessible to all readers, such as Archives de sciences sociales des religions, Bulletin de la Société de l'histoire du protestantisme français, Revue d'histoire de l'Eglise de France, Revue des études juives, etc.

The Research library has a large open-access collection of reference works and a large collection of source texts presented in either French or their original languages (English, Herman, Latin, Greek, or Hebrew). 

The Library’s heritage collections are exceptionally extensive as a result of both the importance of religious studies in past editorial output and substantial acquisitions. They are particularly well-developed in the following fields: biblical studies, rabbinical literature and historical studies of rabbinism, Islam, fundamental and historical theology, ecclesiology, patristics, the history of religious orders, canonical law, etc.

French Catholic parish bulletins, collected since this type of publication first appeared in the late 19th century, constitute an important collection which is unique in France.

Collections held by the Arsenal Library (Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal) include a very extensive old theology collection. In particular, this includes a very large number of printed Bibles, as well as an interesting collection of Jansenist, Protestant, and heretical literature. The library also offers materials on esotericism and demonology, intended to illustrate and enhance the Péladan, Villeneuve, and Lambert collections.

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Monday, January 12, 2015