The Keilschriftbibliographie is online!

By Georg Neumann

The printed version of the Keilschriftbibliographie (Cuneiform Bibliography) has been published since 1940 in the journal Orientalia (since Nova Series issue 9) by the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome. Up to now 68 issues have been published, and the 69th is already in press. The Keilschriftbibliographie has become an essential tool for the investigation, study and teaching of Ancient Near Eastern Studies.

The former main editors were (in alphabetical order): Richard Caplice, Karlheinz Deller, Cyrus H. Gordon, Horst Klengel, Alfred Pohl and Claudio Saporetti. Since 1999 (KeiBi 57), Hans Neumann (University of Muenster) has been in charge of the bibliography. In March 2012, 72 years after the publication of the first issue, the Keilschriftbibliographie went online!

About the KeiBi online (Cuneiform e-Bibliography)

The KeiBi online is made possible with the support of the German Research Foundation (DFG) within the project “Propylaeum” – Virtual Library Classical Studies. It was developed as part of the Propylaeum module “Ancient Near Eastern Studies” at the University Library Tübingen, with the support of the Institute of Ancient Near Eastern Studies (IANES), University of Tübingen. Prof. Dr. Hans Neumann, in cooperation with the Institut für Altorientalische Philologie und Vorderasiatische Altertumskunde, University of Münster, provides the KeiBi entries from volume 57 (Orientalia N.S. 69, 1999) onwards. Earlier issues were scanned and digitally processed.

Thereafter the KeiBis were worked issue per issue, library-wise. Thus, the KeiBi online allows a search of all issues of the Keilschriftbibliographie simultaneously using several keywords (such as: “author” or “title”). These queries can be combined by parameters such as “and”, “or”, “or not” and “and not”. In addition, the database provides the opportunity to search for reviews, a process that is – as we all know – sometimes quite difficult. Furthermore, all search results can be exported as BibTeX files. This clears the way for the use of reference management programmes. The published issues are also downloadable as PDF files. Due to copyright, the latest issues are not included in the database for two years from their launching.

Coming soon

By the end of 2012 KeiBi online will be updated with several new features, for example it will have the possibility of exporting the search results and saved entries as PDF files. In addition, a French version of the database is planned. By the end of this year, the KeiBi online will include approximately 72,000 bibliographical entries. In effect, it will offer a nearly complete bibliography for cuneiform studies dating from 1940. In the following years the later KeiBis will be added.


Finally, I would like to express my gratitude to all who have participated, supported and worked for years in the project Propylaeum – Modul “Ancient Near Eastern Studies”. Without their contribution, there would be no KeiBi online. They are (in alphabetical order): Jessica Baldwin, Sim Belik, Svetlana Gasimova, Andreas Kelberer, Luise Loges, Mehrnoush Malayeri, Felix Roeder, Saqer Salah, Christopher Schöbinger, Nicole Tußler and Sultan Ünal. Last but not least, I would also like to thank the project coordinator Dr. Walter Werkmeister, who supported the whole team in an outstanding manner for four years.

Contact Information

If you have any questions, criticism or remarks, do not hesitate to get in touch with us:
Georg Neumann M.A. (Scientific Assistant) ( and Dr. Walter Werkmeister (Project Coordination) (

Or visit KeiBi online at

Further reading

G. Neumann, Das Projekt Virtuelle Fachbibliothek Altertumswissenschaften, in: Alter Orient aktuell 11 (2010) 23-25.

G. Neumann, The Ancient Near East meets the Internet… Propylaeum – Virtual Library Classical Studies – Ancient Near Eastern Studies, in: R. Matthews – J. Curtis et al. (Hg.), Proceedings of the 7th International Congress on the Archaeology of the Ancient Near East. 12-16 April 2010, the British Museum and UCL, London. Vol. 3 – Fieldwork & Recent Research, Posters, Wiesbaden 2012, 629-635.