Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

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Alternate title

Dictionary of National Biography


The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography is the classic source for biographical information on the United Kingdom and the British Empire, with nearly 58,000 biographies and nearly 11,000 portraits. Typical entries include a brief bibliography and relevant archival sources. Full-text searching makes the Oxford DNB much more than simply a biographical source. A search on "Chartist" for example returns more than 200 entries on individuals plus thematic articles. Also includes reference lists of office holders (e.g., prime ministers), reference groups (i.e., clubs, factions, and movements) and feature essays. One can search images by artist's name, by year, or by institution.


A Help link in the upper right corner of every page leads to context sensitive help. The "Take a tour" link at the left leads to a PowerPoint tour.

User tools and features

Includes links to other Oxford University Press resources to which Rutgers subscribes and to some freely available resources (e.g. The National Register of Archives)

Dates covered

From the earliest Britons to the recently deceased.

Updating frequency

Three times per year.


Based on the 60-volume print edition of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004).

Type of coverage

Biographical essays-often quite substantial-including the subject's life, accomplishments, and influence, with cross references to people and themes. Links to related articles in Grove Music Online and other digital resources acquired by Rutgers from Oxford University Press are also included in many entries.

Print counterpart or
related resources

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004).

Producer/content provider

Oxford University Press

Vendor/electronic presentation provider

Oxford University Press