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Japan Studies Collection: Encyclopedias

The guide provides resources to assist your research on Japan.

Encyclopedias Published during the Pre-War Periods

Wa-Kan Sansai Zue/和漢三才図会

Wa-kan Sansai Zue (illustrated Sino-Japanese encyclopedia) describes and illustrates various activities of daily life, such as carpentry and fishing, as well as plants and animals, and constellations.

  • Modern Japanese language translation version access through Japan Knowledge (UHM Only)
    Toyo Bunko (東洋文庫) 

Koji Ruien/古事類苑

An encyclopedic index of objects, events, and institutions appearing in classical literature. Based on the model of the Chinese encyclopedias. The work is divided into 30 broad categories. Each category has an introductory essay and relevant primary and early secondary documents.

  • Digitized version
    Digital Library from the Meiji Era (from the National Diet Library)

Also see the corresponding volume numbers of the UHM Library 古事類苑 in the box below.

Koji Ruien/古事類苑 UHM holding volume numbers

UHM Library Koji Ruien Volume Numbers

部門 巻数 UHM volume number
天部 1-4 vol 1
歳時部 1-20 vol 1
地部 1-17 vol 2
18-36 vol 3
37-50 vol 4
神祗部 1-23 vol 5
24-50 vol 6
51-70 vol 7
71-100 vol 8
帝王部 1-27 vol 9
官位部 1-24 vol 10
25-50 vol 11
51-80 vol 12
封禄部 1-10 vol 13
政治部 1-25 vol 14
26-50 vol 15
51-75 vol 16
76-100 vol 17
法律部 1-30 vol 18
31-47 vol 19
48-60 vol 20
泉貨部 1-7 vol 21
稱量部 1-3 vol 21
外交部 1-25 vol 22
兵事部 1-48 vol 23
武技部 1-20 vol 24
方技部 1-18 vol 25
宗教部 1-15 vol 26
16-38 vol 27
37-54 vol 28
55-72 vol 29
文学部 1 vol 30
2-33 vol 31
34-50 vol 32
禮式部 1-18 vol 33
19-36 vol 34
楽舞部 1-15 vol 35
16-35 vol 36
人部 1-18 vol 37
19-35 vol 38
姓名部 1-10 vol 39
産業部 1-15 vol 40
16-28 vol 41
服飾部 1-28 vol 42
飲食部 1-16 vol 43
居處部 1-18 vol 44
器用部 1-15 vol 45
16-30 vol 46
遊戯部 1-17 vol 47
動物部 1-20 vol 48
植物部 1-16 vol 49
17-28 vol 50
金石部 1-5 vol 50

General Encyclopedias

Online Version

  • Nipponica 日本大百科全書 (UHM Only) access through JapanKnowledge Lib
    Includes approximately 130,000 entries and 700,000 index words and is regularly updated and revised.

            nipponica

  • Nihon Rekishi Chimei Taikei 日本歴史地名大系 (UHM Only) access through JapanKnowledge Lib
    Encyclopedia of Japanese historical place names. Some 20,000 entries are categorized, encompassing all of the prefectures of Japan plus Kyoto City, edited to reflect recent changes such as municipal mergers and changes in place names. It also contains some 500 archeological notes reflecting the latest research.

           rekichi

 

Printed/Online Versions

  • Kokushi Daijiten/国史大辞典
    Printed version and online version via JapanKnowledge Lib are available
    One of the largest encyclopedias of Japanese history.  It encompasses every aspect of Japan's history and includes entries in related fields such as archaeology, folklore, religion, art, Japanese language, Japanese literature and geography.

            kokushi daijiten

Printed Versions

Web Encyclopedias

These are community developed web encyclopedias. Many people can edit anytime. Make sure to verify the information by consulting other sources before citing.