Modern Greek Studies Association

Burnam Library, University of Cincinnati

Cincinnati, Ohio

History and Description

The John Miller Burnam Classical Library is named after a former faculty member of the Classics Department, whose excellent private library was willed to the University and became the nucleus of the present library in 1921. The collection was greatly expanded through the personal efforts and generosity of a former chairman of the Department and his wife, William T. and Louise Taft Semple. Entire collections were purchased and provided an in-depth comprehensive retrospective collection. The Classics Department of the University of Cincinnati continues to provide primary support for acquisitions from the Semple Classics Fund.

Collection development focuses comprehensively on all aspects of the ancient Greek and Roman world with library materials, in print and other formats, covering history, archaeology, language and literature, art, numismatics, science and technology, papyrology, epigraphy and patristics as well as providing strong coverage in titles on Egypt and the Ancient Near East and on paleography. Moreover, the Classics Library’s Modern Greek Collection offers extensive coverage in materials in all areas of Byzantine and Modern Greece.

The Classics Library contains over 234,000 items of which approximately 53,000 are housed in the Modern Greek Collection stacks.

Publications on the Classics Library’s Modern Greek Collection

Kyparissiotis, Niove, editor. The Modern Greek Collection in the Library of the University of Cincinnati: a Catalogue. With a foreword by Carl W. Blegen. Athens: Hestia Press, 1960.

Riley, Jacquelene W. “Research Opportunities in the Modern Greek Collection in the Classics Library at the University of Cincinnati,” Journal of Modern Greek Studies 26:1 (2008) 29-62. (requires access to Project Muse to view on-line)

Topping, Peter W. “Modern Greek Studies and Materials in the United States.” Byzantion 15(1940) 414-442.

Topping Peter and Eva C. Topping. “University of Cincinnati: Greece” in East Central and Southeast Europe: a Handbook of Library and Archival Resources in North America, edited by Paul L. Horecky, 45-52. Santa Barbara, CA: Clio Press, 1976.

University of Cincinnati. Libraries. Burnam Classical Library. Modern Greek Collection. Catalog of the Modern Greek Collection, University of Cincinnati. Boston, MA: G. K. Hall, 1978.

Wellington, Jean Susorney. “The Modern Greek Collection at the University of Cincinnati.” Paper presented at “Strengthening Modern Greek Collections: Building U.S.-Greek Library partnerships,” a conference at the Library of Congress, Washington D.C., April 29-30, 1999.

Last revised October 8, 2008.

Jacquelene W. Riley, Head
John Miller Burnam Classical Library
University of Cincinnati Libraries
320 Blegen Library Building
M.L. 191
Cincinnati OH 45220

Phone: (513) 556-1316
Fax: (513) 556-6244


The University of Cincinnati Libraries collection is available through the Library Catalog link on the Classics Library Web site.


The Modern Greek Collection is very strong in materials on Byzantine and Modern Greek history, government and politics, literature and language, economics, religion, folklore, philosophy, archaeology and area studies, regardless of the country of publication. However, additions to the Modern Greek literature section have been restricted to English language translations since the early 1990s due to library staffing. The strong periodical collection is especially important for 19th and early 20th century titles and many journals that were published for short runs. The collection also contains early 19th century books published outside Greece by Greek intellectuals. Extensive and complementary materials on Greek antiquity are available in the Classics Collection.