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Primary Sources: Collections available through Cornell: Critical Editions

A guide to digital, print, and archival historical primary sources available at Cornell

Published Primary Sources inside Books

Primary sources are often published in their entirety in books, or in part as excerpts or appendices. Primary sources are sometimes published in a critical edition that may contain translations, annotations, footnotes, prefatory essays, and/or bibliography. Such editions are particularly useful, the more recent their date of publication and the more scholarly the publisher the better.

To find primary sources published in books, browse footnotes and bibliographies of books, encyclopedias, and articles for information about published (as well as unpublished) primary sources.

Search the Library Catalog for modern editions of primary sources, sometimes in English translation.

Use the "advanced search" with terms related to your topic and terms for primary sources such as:

  • sources
  • diaries
  • "personal narratives"
  • interviews
  • letters

Sample search: