Skip to Main Content

Near East Collections: Arabic Movie Posters and Lobby Cards Collection at Princeton University Library: WORKING WITH SOURCE MATERIALS-PRINCETON

Search the Main Catalog

Main Catalog Search



"A primary source is a document or physical object which was written or created during the time under study. These sources were present during an experience or time period and offer an inside view of a particular event."-Princeton University RefDesk.


The Department of Special Collections functions as the repository for Princeton's Near East Special Collections.

Working with primary source materials requires tools that differ slightly from those used when working with secondary source materials.  Finding aids, databases, preliminary checklists, collection catalogues and descriptive lists have been created to assist researchers in finding materials within each collection.

Access to the non-circulating collections housed in Special Collections may or may not be limited, and they may only be used within Special Collection's reading rooms.

For more information on RBSC and Princeton's various research tools for locating primary source materials, please click on the links below.


Special Collections Catalogs, Databases, and Finding Aids - The Department of Special Collections has a wide variety of online reference tools that describe its holdings in varying degrees of detail.

Finding Aids website - Use this site to explore descriptions of holdings at the Princeton University Libraries, which include manuscripts, archival collections, images, ephemera, and much more one-of-a-kind material.

Near East Collections in Special Collections - include more than 20,000 titles in 11,000 codexes; predominantly in Arabic.  In addition to manuscripts, the Collections also include movie posters and lobby cards, papyri, calligraphy, cuneiform tablets, stone seals, a numismatic collection, and modern and personal papers relating to the Near East.


"A secondary source interprets and analyzes primary sources. These sources are one or more steps removed from the event. Secondary sources may have pictures, quotes or graphics of primary sources in them."-Princeton University RefDesk.


The Near East book Collection (NEC) at Princeton University Library contains approximately 457,596 printed books in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian and Turkish and is one of the greatest collections of its kind in the United States. 

The Near East Periodicals Collection (PRNE) of contemporary serials and newspapers are acquired on a regular basis from around the world.  The library currently receives approximately 2,000 active serial publications in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, Turkish, Urdu, and many Western languages.

The Microforms Collections parallel the general holdings of selected books, newspapers, manuscripts, government publications, dissertations, and other materials at Princeton University.

Marquand Library of Art & Archaeology is one of the oldest and most extensive art libraries in the United States.


A listing of all Firestone Graduate Study & Seminar Rooms, along with their locations, Departments and/or Library Contacts has been provided here.


Special Collections Reading Rooms & Research Services  The non-circulating collections housed inSpecial Collections may only be used within Special Collection's reading rooms.

Near Eastern Studies Graduate Study Room (SNE)  The Near Eastern Studies Graduate Study Room (SNE) houses a sizable non-circulating reference collection, with an emphasis on literary, historical, legal, and religious topics in the Near East.


Yahya al-Hubb [Long Live Love] (Egypt, 1938)

Cairo: credits lost, but probably al-Cinema al-'Arabiyah Printing

“Gassour” [Hassan Mazhar Gassour, 1925-1992]; undated

Director: Muhammad Karim (1896-1972)

Actors listed: Muhammad ‘Abd al-Wahab and Layla Murad

al-Tariq al-Mustaqim [The Straight Path] (Egypt, 1943)

Cairo: al-Cinema al-'Arabiyah, H. Gassour Printing

“Gassour” [Hassan Mazhar Gassour, 1925-1992]; undated

Director: Togo Mizrahi (1905-1986)

Actors listed: Yusuf Wahbi, Fatima Rushdi, Amina Rizq, and Bishara Wakim