Primary Sources

Ancient Manuscripts that serves as the primary sources for biblical & theological studies.

Historical Context: Ancient Manuscripts
  • Perseus Collection: Greek and Roman Materials
    Perseus is a massive digital library, whose “flagship collection, under development since 1987, covers the history, literature and culture of the Greco-Roman world.” You can read & search in English, Greek, & Latin. It’s the online academic gold-standard.
  • Early Christian Writings
    This is the easiest place to access primary sources for NT studies, (from the 1st-3rd centuries C.E.). Covering the NT, Apocrypha, Gnostic Lit, Church Fathers, sources are arranged by date and by type.
  • Early Jewish Writings
    “Early Jewish Writings is the most complete collection of Jewish documents from antiquity with translations, introductions, and links.” This is Peter Kirby’s easy-to-navigate collections of Josephus, Philo, the Pseudepigrapha, Deuterocanon.
  • Greek New Testament
    One of the links from Michael Marlowe’s “Bible Research” website, this page contains an excellent selection of online Greek NT’s, Lexicons, and sundry Greek-related topics.
  • The Septuagint Online
    This is Joel Kavlesmaski’s page on the Septuagint. Although most of the links are to places where you can purchase the Septuagint, this site is a particularly helpful place to become conversant in Septuagint studies.
  • NETS: New English Translation of the Septuagint
    Completed in 2007 & published by Oxford University Press, this is the official free, online version of the English translation of the Septuagint.
    This site contains the Greek text of the Septuagint. Hovering over a word will show its parsing information, but not its translation.
  • Christian Classics Ethereal Library
    CCEL hosts “hundreds of classic Christian books selected for edification and education.” While the earliest texts on the site are the Epistle of Barnabas & Irenaeus’ letters, the site consists mostly of authors from the 1100’s onwards.
    “An online resource dedicated to the Gospel of Thomas other early [non-canonical] Christian Gospels.” Not only does the site give you information, but provides links to online texts for each gospel.
  • K.C. Hanson’s Gospel of Thomas page
     “Gospel” used loosely here.
  • Soncino Babylonian Talmud
    Translated by Rabbi Dr. I. Epstein, this contains most of the Babylonian Talmud.
  • Guide to Medieval Christian Spirituality
    This site contains both primary and secondary sources on Medieval Christian Spirituality, and is an excellent place to begin your research.
  • Codex Bezae online
    This is the onilne Greek-Latin/French/English text of Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis (D 05). Although the webpage is in French, a parallel Greek-English is available.
  • The Internet Classics Archive
    This is Daniel C. Stevenson’s site where users can “select from a list of 441 works of classical literature by 59 different authors, including user-driven commentary and ‘reader’s choice’ Web sites.”
  • Dead Sea Scrolls
    There are many good places to start research on the DSS. This site, hosted at, is part of an exhibition at the Library of Congress in Washington DC. It’s a very good primer that equips you for further research. For your next step, go to The Digital Dead Sea Scrolls, created in partnership with Google.
  • Digita Vaticana
    The Vatican is digitizing its library.
  • Advanced Papyrological Information System (APIS)
    This site provides online access to the papyrological collection at the University of Michegan as well as collections from other universities such as Columbia, Duke, and Yale.
  • Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts (CSNTM)
    The CSNTM provides access to digital photos of manuscripts of the GNT. Though not a complete, it is an outstanding source of high-quality photos.
  • Newman University’s list of tools for biblical study

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