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Eighteenth-Century Resources

General Eighteenth-Century Library Resources:

  • A Dictionary of British and American Women Writers, 1660-1800 (1985), edited by Janet Todd: A collection of short biographies with a list of the writings of each author and a short, helpful bibliography of works about them.
  • Dictionary of Literary Biography. Drama, 1660-1800, volumes 80, 84, and 89; Novel, volumes 39, parts 1 and 2; Poetry, volume 109; Book Trades, volume 154.
  • The Feminist Companion to Literature in English: women writers from the Middle Ages to the present, by Virginia Blain, Patricia Clements, and Isobel Grundy.  (New Haven: Yale UP, 1990).
  • Modern Language Association Bibliography (MLA Bibliography): A list of books and articles published each year arranged by century, genre, and author.
  • The New Cambridge Bibliography of English Literature, vol. 2: A chronological list of primary and secondary sources up to about 1968.
  • The Philological Quarterly bibliography (now called The Eighteenth Century: A Current Bibliography): An annotated bibliography published in July of each year. Early years of the PQbibliography have been published in English Literature, 1660-1800, A Bibliography of Modern Studies.
  • Restoration: Studies in English Literary Culture (1660-1700) and Scriblerian and the Kit-Cats (from Dryden to Sterne): Both are annotated lists of recent publications in the field.
  • Women Advising Women: Advice Books, Manuals, and Journals for Women, 1450-1837. Ninety-one microfilm reels divided into categories. Items are not listed separately in Auburn’s library catalogue, but there is a printed guide. Categories are Early Women’s Journals, 1700-1832; Advice Books, Manuals, Almanacs, 1625-1837; Lady’s Magazine, 1770-1832; Women’s Writing and Advice, 1450-1720; and Works on Household Management and Domestic Economy, 1600-1800. Auburn microfilm call number: PN 5124 .W6 W496.

Eighteenth-Century Literature:


  • Eighteenth-Century Periodicals that Review (grid)Eighteenth-Century Periodicals that Review (text). Lists of periodicals that published reviews compiled by Lacey Williams and Paula Backscheider. Suggestions for additions are welcome.
  • The London Stage, 1660-1800: A Calendar of Plays, Entertainments, and Afterpieces. Lists all plays performed in London from 1660-1800 in chronological order; also gives information on actors, theatres, and occasionally reviews. The last volume has an index of playwrights and actors.
  • HathiTrust - London Stage The HathiTrust makes The Index to the London Stage, 1660-1800 fully viewable. This is useful for researchers who need the dates and locations of performances; however, researchers must visit a library that has The London Stage to look up details on each performance. HathiTrust does not make these volumes available.
  • The London Stage, website. An updated version of The London Stage for 1700-1729.
  • A Biographical Dictionary of Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Dancers, Managers and Other Stage Personnel in London, 1660-1800, vols. 1-16, by Philip H. Highfill, et al. Comprehensive essays on everyone who did anything in theatre during this period.
  • The Dictionary of Literary Biography, vols. 80, 84, and 89. Entries summarize each play and include biographies and evaluations of careers. This series covers from the earliest Restoration to the end of the eighteenth century.
  • Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Theatre Research Bibliography. An annotated bibliography of articles and books on the theatre; after 1968 published yearly for several decades.
  • English Drama, 1660-1800:  A Guide to Information Sources, by Frederick Link. Bibliographies on theatre history, theatres, actors, and much more.
  • The Revels History of Drama in English, ed. Clifford Leech and T. W. Craik. Multivolume history with essays on audiences, actors, theatres, trends and more.
  • The Prologues and Epilogues of the Restoration 1660-1700, and The Prologues and Epilogues of the Eighteenth Century, ed. Pierre Danchin. These sets contain the prologues and epilogues to plays performed during the Restoration and eighteenth century.
  • Women Playwrights in England, Ireland and Scotland, 1660-1823, by David and Susan Mann. A bibliography with biographies.
  • A Register of English Theatrical Documents, 1660-1737, Judith Milhous and Rob Hume, eds. A listing and description of archival materials.
  • Theatrical Criticism in London to 1795, by Charles Gray. Survey and commentary on sources of opinions and information about the London theatre from 1620-1795.
  • Remarks for The British Theatre, by Elizabeth Inchbald. These prefaces to the 125 “current acting plays” Inchbald chose for her commissioned 25-volume edition are one of the first sustained examples of literary criticism by a woman and join a number of important playwright-players’ analyses of the eighteenth-century repertory plays. Because they are the repertory, plays by Shakespeare and Johnson are there as well as most of the major plays written in the Restoration and eighteenth century.
  • Some Account of the English Stage, by John Genest. Notes on plays, playwrights, and actors from 1660-1830. Volume 10 contains an index of play titles and authors.
  • The Dramatic Censor, or Critical Companion, by Francis Gentleman. Critical reviews of selected eighteenth-century plays, indexed at the end of each volume.
  • Dramatic Miscellanies, by Thomas Davies. Reviews of plays performed during the eighteenth century with special attention paid to those roles performed by David Garrick. Also includes anecdotes of playwrights and actors.
  • Memoirs of the Life of David Garrick, by Thomas Davies. Includes a history of the stage and anecdotes about Garrick’s contemporaries.
  • A Comparison Between the Two Stages by Charles Gildon. Commentary on theatre in general.
  • Biographia Dramatica, by David Erskine Baker. Historical and critical memoirs through 1811 of British playwrights and actors with reviews of their works.
  • Opening Night! Opera & Oratorio Premieres, website. A cross-index of data for over 38,000 opera and oratorio premieres.


  • Eighteenth-Century Anglo-American Women Novelists: A Critical Reference Guide, by Doreen Alvarez Saar and Mary Anne Schofield. An annotated bibliography of publications on women novelists which includes publications on their poetry and drama as well. Coverage to 1993.
  • English Prose Fiction, 1600-1700:  A Chronological Checklist, ed. Charles C. Mish. Arranged chronologically, it lists fiction published between 1600 and 1700 as well as citing a location for the work, usually in Pollard & Redgrave or Wing. Compiled before the major data bases, this bibliography is somewhat incomplete but still highly useful.
  • A Check List of English Prose Fiction 1700-1739, ed. William McBurney. Chronologically lists fiction including translations published in English from 1700-1739; it includes a section for “dubious and unauthenticated titles. Compiled before the major data bases, this bibliography is somewhat incomplete but still highly useful.
  • A Check List of Prose Fiction Published in England 1740-1749ed. Jerry C. Beasley.Chronological list of novels published in England from 1740-1749.  Reprints and other editions are listed and summaries of many fictions are included. Compiled before the major data bases, this bibliography is somewhat incomplete but still highly useful.
  • British Fiction 1750-1770: A Chronological Check-List of Prose Fiction Printed in Britain and Ireland, ed.James Raven. A highly comprehensive, chronological bibliography of prose fiction with an important, substantive introduction. Includes references to reviews from two eighteenth-century periodicals and other information such as where extant copies are located.
  • The English Novel 1770-1829:  A Bibliographical Survey of Prose Fiction Published in the British Isles, ed.James Raven and Antonia Forster.  Volume 1: 1770-1799. This source contains in chronological order a list of British fiction published between 1770 and 1799.  Each entry includes bibliographic details, locations of extant copies, and lists reviews appearing in major eighteenth-century periodicals. The introduction is an important survey of novel history with many statistics.
  • A Bibliography of the English Novel from the Restoration to the French Revolution:  A Checklist of Sources and Critical Materials with Particular Reference to the Period 1660 to 1740, ed. Robert Letellier. This bibliography is divided into two parts, the first listing works about English novels that were published between the Restoration and the French Revolution, arranged according to subject.  The second part contains a bibliography of English novels published between the Restoration and the French Revolution, arranged according to title.
  • Living by the Pen: Women Writers in the Eighteenth Century, by Cheryl Turner.This book is a history of women writers and writing as a profession for women primarily between 1696 and 1796 with attention to seventeenth-century backgrounds.  Turner offers explanations for the rapid increase in women writers and in women's fiction and includes two valuable appendices, one an alphabetical list of women authors with the novels they published and the other a year-by-year chronology of novel publications by women..


  • Index to Book Reviews in England, 1749-1800, vols. 1-2, by Antonia Forster. An index of book reviews, including printed plays, arranged alphabetically by author and title of work.
  • British Union Catalogue of Periodicals, ed. James D. Stewart, et al. This is an alphabetical list of British periodicals from the seventeenth century through today.
  • A Census of British Newspapers and Periodicals 1620-1800, by Ronald S. Crane and F. B. Kaye. This is an alphabetical list of British newspapers and periodicals.  
  • Index and Finding List of Serials Published in the British Isles, 1789-1832, by William S. Ward. Another alphabetical list of British periodicals. 
  • Studies of British Newspapers and Periodicals from Their Beginning to 1800: A Bibliography, by Katherine Kirtley Weed and Richmond P. Bond.
  • British Literary Magazines, vols. 1-2 edited by Alvin Sullivan. The first two volumes in this four-volume series detail literary publications from 1698 through the eighteenth century. Volume 1: The Augustan Age and the Age of Johnson, 1698-1788. Volume 2: The Romantic Age, 1789-1836.
  • English Literary Periodicals, by Walter Graham. Divided into sections by major periodicals, critical reviews, and types of periodicals such as theatrical, humor, and poetry.
  • Studies in the Early English Periodical, ed. R. P. Bond. Gives information on several major newspapers 1700-1760, including  The Gazetteer, The Prompter, and The Female Spectator.
  • Serial Publication in England Before 1750, by R. M. Wiles.
  • Freshest Advices: Early Provincial Newspapers in England, by R. M. Wiles.
  • Britain’s Theatrical Periodicals, 1720-1967, ed. Carl J. Stratman. Chronological list of theatrical periodicals beginning in 1720.
  • "A Catalogue of Magazine Novels and Novelettes, 1740-1815," in The English Novel in the Magazines, 1740-1815: With a Catalogue of 1,375 Magazine Novels and Novelettes, by Robert D. Mayo.  A bibliography of narrative prose works of more than 5,000 words printed in serial publications other than newspapers.
  • The Poetry of the Gentleman's Magazine, 1731-1800: An Electronic Database of Titles, Authors, and First Lines A still-growing, searchable database of poetry in the Gentleman's Magazine.
  • British Newspaper Archive Allows you to search over 200 years of newspaper pages from the British Library online.


Eighteenth-Century History:

  • British History Online A "digital library containing some of the core printed primary and secondary sources for the medieval and modern history of the British Isles...Created by the Institute of Historical Research and the History of Parliament Trust." Sources are searchable by places, subjects, and periods.
  • Britons, by Linda Colley.
  • A Companion to Eighteenth-Century Britain, by H.T. Dickinson. (Blackwell's Companion series)
  • Country and Court: England 1658-1714, by J.R. Jones.
  • The Eighteenth Century, by P.J. Marshall. (vol. 2 of The Oxford History of the British Empire)
  • Stability and Strife: England 1714-1760, by W.A. Speck.
  • Wars and Revolutions: Britain 1760-1815, by Ian Christie.
  • A Land of Liberty? England 1689-1727 by Julian Hoppitt
  • A Polite and Commercial People: England 1727 - 1783 by Paul Langford
  • A Mad, Bad, and Dangerous People? England 1783-1846 by Boyd Hilton

Eighteenth-Century Resources Online:

American Colonial Resources: