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Medieval and Early Modern European History

Research guide for sources in medieval and early modern European history

Primary Sources

What are primary sources?

Primary sources are original documents and objects created at the time being studied, such as diaries, newspaper accounts, letters, governmental records, or drawings. Any record that documents a past event can be considered a primary source.

Where can I find primary sources? 

You can find primary sources in libraries, museums, and archives, including McGill's Rare Books and Special Collections Library (located on the 4th floor of the McLennan Library building). You can also find digitized primary sources online in library databases, such as those linked below, as well as in digitized collections, such as McGill's Digital Exhibitions & Collections.

  • su: Reformation England sources
  • su: Inquisition France sources
  • su: Europe history 1492-1648 sources

Medieval Collections

Early Modern Collections

Reformation & Counter Reformation

Women, Gender, and Sexality

Manuscripts held by McGill Libraries

Medieval Manuscripts at RBSC (Rare Books & Special Collections)

McGill Rare Books and Special Collections holds more than 235 medieval manuscripts, spanning from the 9th to the 15th century.

Renaissance Music at Marvin Duchow Music Library

The Marvin Duchow Music Library has medieval printed and manuscript music on microfilm as well as original documents. See the following guides:

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