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Hellenic Studies: Library Orientation


Firestone Library

The Princeton University Library is a not a single building, but a system composed of many libraries and hundreds of collections. The Harvey S. Firestone Memorial Library, at the corner of Washington Road and Nassau Steet, is the largest of these libraries, with more than 70 miles of shelving housing some six million printed volumes.

Firestone is an open-stack library, i.e. you can retrieve the items you need yourself and take them to the Circulation Desk on the 1st floor if you wish to borrow them. Note that not all libraries or collections are open-stack. Special Collections on the C floor in Firestone is a closed-stack area, whose items do not circulate. The Marquand Library of Art and Archaeology is open-stack, but its collections do not circulate.

The library has 6 floors; the numbered floors (1-3) are above ground and the lettered ones (A-C) below ground.

1st Floor

Circulation Desk: All items are charged out and returned to this desk. For visiting fellows who are at Princeton for more than 3 months, the loan period is the academic year; for visiting fellows here for less than 3 months, the loan period is 8 weeks. Note: You must have your Princeton University ID activated at the Circulation Desk before you can borrow materials from the library or use Borrow Direct.

The Trustee Reading Room (General and Humanities Reference Collection) (DR): Firestone coordinates 1-5E. General selection of print dictionaries, encyclopedias, bibliographies, atlases, biographies, etc.

A Floor (the floor immediately below the 1st Floor)

Hellenic Studies Reading Room (SHS): Firestone coordinates A-12D-2. Immediate key access to the room is restricted to Hellenic Studies affiliates. The room contains two computers for catalog and database searching, a small reference collection and a selection of Greek language peridiocals. The large desk is equipped with several electric outlets for laptops. Note: There is no printer in this room. See here for instructions on printing from your laptop. Please note: You must charge out any library item you wish to keep in SHS.

Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE): Firestone coordinates A-12D-1. Immediate key access is restricted.

B Floor

Computer workstations connected to a network printer are located on all floors. There are Macs on the 1st and C Floors, and a color printer on the C Floor.

Book scanners are located on all floors; there is NO CHARGE for their use. A photocopier is located on the A floor (A-12H). The cost of a black-and-white photcopy is 10 cents. Copies are paid for either by a prepaid photocopy card available for purchase at the Circulation Desk (in denominations of $5, $10, and $25, plus $1 for the card itself), or by money deposited on your ID (PAW points). These deposits can be made at the Frist Campus Center's Value Transfer Station or online at the TigerCard Online Card Office.

The Center for Digital Humanities at Princeton (B-11H).

C Floor

The C Floor contains the bulk of our circulating collection.

Special Collections: For a list of the manuscript collections, see the Modern Manuscript Collections tab. In addition, there are a large number of manuscripts from the ancient Near East; literary and documentary papyri from Egypt; Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and other Islamic texts; medieval and Renaissance manuscripts and documents. To view a list of all available finding aids, please consult: PU Finding Aids. In order to consult these collections, you must be registered for a research account.

3rd Floor

Classics Graduate Study Room (SCG, SCL, SC, and SCP): Firestone coordinates 3-15G. Access to the room is restricted. If you anticipate that you will need consistent access to the room, let me know and I will have your name and ID number added to the access list. The circulating Classics collection (Clas) is located just outside this room.

Please note:  Firestone Library and many other libraries on campus separate oversize books from regular size ones. Oversize items are identified by by the letters q, f or e (for quarto, folio, or elephant folio) at the end of the call number and, in Firestone, by pink call number signs on the stacks.

Visiting and Post-doc research fellows also have access to the collections of the Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS) Library though registration is required to receive a PTS borrowing card.

Catalogs and Databases

The Library's home page is the gateway to library catalogs, databases, e-journals, etc.

The Catalog is where you should search to locate the call number of an item in the Princeton libraries. You can search by title, author, subject, keyword, or call number. There are a number of more advanced features in the Advanced Search. To search the catalog for Greek titles, please see the following transliteration table.

If you cannot locate an item in the Main Catalog, search WorldCat (the world's largest bibliographic database).  You can initiate an Interlibrary Loan request through WorldCat by clicking on  in a title's "Detailed Record."  If an item is charged out, you may need to recall the item or use Borrow Direct (for books) to obtain a copy from another library.

You also have access to a large number of databases (online indexes, electronic texts). Choose Databases from the Library home page to browse or search for them.

Borrow Direct and Interlibrary Loan

When Princeton does not own a book or our copy is check out or otherwise unavailable, use Borrow Direct to obtain a copy from another library. Borrow Direct is a rapid, patron-initiated borrowing and lending service offered by Princeton University Library and twelve partner libraries--Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, MIT, the University of Chicago, the University of Pennsylvania, Stanford and Yale.

Regardless of whether or not Princeton owns a journal article, you can request a PDF copy via Article Express (you will be required to set up an account prior to your first request).


Subject Specialists

Subject Specialists

Wayne Bivens-Tatum, Philosophy and Religion, X86367
Bobray J. Bordelon, Economics, X83211
Eric White, Rare Books, X83165
Jeremy Darrington, Politics, X8-3254
Alan Stahl, Numismatics, X89127
David Jenkins, Classics, Hellenic Studies and Linguistics, X85811
Steven Knowlton, American History, X80496
Alain St. Pierre, European & African History, X82964
Rebecca Friedman, Art and Archaeology, X83163
Thomas Keenan, Russian and Slavic Studies, X83592


For additional subject specialists, see Subject and Reference Specialists under Research Help on the Library home page.

Contact the Hellenic Studies Librarian

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David Jenkins
A-15J-2 Firestone Library
(609) 258-5811

Office hours: Mondays 11:00-12:00pm, Tuesdays 2:00-4:00pm
Schedule an appointment