Encyclopedias

The Encyclopedia of Religion. 16 vols. Mircea Eliade.
Theology Reference BL 31 E46 1987
This is the most complete and authoritative single encyclopedia on religion. Use the index volume to find all references to a topic.  Entries are signed and suggestions for further reading follow each entry.

Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics. 13 vols. James Hastings. (1908-26)
Theology Reference BL 31 FO8
Containing articles on all world religions and great systems of ethics, this work provides comprehensive coverage. The material is dated as there have been no revisions since 1927. A list of cross-references is provided in volume 1 although cross-references are scattered throughout the set. Entries are signed and brief bibliographies follow some entries. The last volume is the index to the set.

Sacred Texts of the World: A Universal Anthology. Ninian Smart & Richard D. Hecht.
Theology Reference BL 70 S247 1982
A collection of sacred narratives from ancient and contemporary religions, including world wide religions and small sects.

Eerdman’s Handbook to the World’s Religions. R. Pierce Beaver.
Theology Reference BL 80.2 E35 1982
This work contains articles on the history and beliefs of religions around the world, and the study of religion. Entries are signed. A rapid fact-finder and an index can be found at the end of the volume.

The Encyclopedia of World Faith: An Illustrated Survey of the World’s Living Religions. Peter Bishop & Michael Darton.
Theology Reference BL 80.2 1988

This encyclopedia provides a historical approach to major world religions of the East and West. It concludes with a bibliography for further reading, a glossary to assist with unfamiliar terminology, and an index.

A Handbook of Living Religions. John R. Hinnells.
Theology Reference BL 80.2 H35 1984
Contains long articles on currently practiced religions.

Encyclopedia of the American Religious Experience. 3 vols. Charles H. Lippy & Peter W. Williams.
Theology Reference BL 2525 E53 1988

This is a comprehensive study of all religious experience in North America although primary emphasis is given to developments in the United States. It is organized by topic or theme. Each essay is signed and is followed by a bibliography for further reading.

America’s Alternative Religions. Timothy Miller.
Theology Reference BL 2525 A55 1995

Seven major categories of alternate religions are discussed: established Christian alternatives; contemporary Christian and Jewish movements; religions from Asia; religions from the Middle East; African-American freedom movements; ancient Wisdom and New Age movements; and others (e.g., Scientology and Satanism). An overview of each tradition is presented, followed by a bibliography for further reading. The volume concludes with two appendices, alternative religions not covered in full and a chronology of alternative religions in America, and an index. Entries are signed.

Handbook of denominations in the United States. 10th ed. Frank S. Mead.
Theology Reference BL 2525 M425 1995
Descriptions of denominations, subgroups, and branches. It emphasizes Christian traditions but includes brief listings for other faiths.

The Encyclopedia of American Religions. 2 vols. J. Gordon Melton. (1978)
Theology Reference BL 2530 U6 M443

Describes 1200 American churches.

The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge. 13 vols. Albert Hauck. (1908-1914)
Mugar Reference  XBR 95 FO8

This is primarily Christian in focus but includes articles on other religions and religious leaders. Entries are signed and longer entries have suggestions for further reading. The last volume contains the index to the set.

Encyclopedia of African American Religions.
Mugar Reference  BR 563N4 E53 1993

This encyclopedia provides comprehensive coverage of African-American religious groups and leaders of the past and present as well as major issues in African-American religious life. Included is a chronology and directory of all religious groups/denominations which have entries in the encyclopedia. Cross-references are from biographical entries to church or religious tradition. A subject/organization/personal index concludes the volume.

Oxford Encyclopedia of the Reformation. 4 vols. Hans J. Hillerbrand, ed.
Mugar Reference XBR 3028 O93 1996

Articles cover not just Christian theology but also popular religion and society of the 16th century in Europe.