Encyclopaedia of Islam

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The Encyclopaedia of Islam (EI; French Encyclopédie de l'Islam ) is an encyclopedia published by Brill in Leiden on the religion, history and culture of the Islamic world and the most comprehensive reference work on Islamic studies to date . The individual articles are written by well-known Islamic scholars from all over the world and signed with the names of the authors. Together with the Encyclopædia Iranica and the Encyclopaedia Aethiopica , the Encyclopaedia of Islam is one of the most important reference works in Oriental studies .

The work is now in its third edition. The first edition appeared in English, French and German, the second edition in English and French, and the third edition only appears in English. The three editions are also available online in English, the second edition also online in French. In the printed English volumes the title is The Encyclopaedia of Islam , in the online editions it is shortened to Encyclopaedia of Islam . Since the third edition, which was started in 2007, is still under construction, the second edition has to be used for many topics, which appeared between 1954 and 2005 and which in many cases no longer reflects the current state of research .

The Encycopaedia of Islam is not to be confused with the Encyclopaedia Islamica, also published by Brill Verlag , which is also under academic editing , but is an abbreviated translation of the Persian Islam encyclopedia Dāʾirat al-Maʿārif-i Buzurg-i Islāmī .

First edition: "Encyclopedia of Islam"

The first edition of the Encyclopaedia of Islam , published between 1913 and 1938, still appeared in three languages: English , French and German . The German version was called the Encyclopedia of Islam. Geographical, ethnographical and biographical dictionary of the Muslim peoples . The four basic volumes appeared in the years 1913 to 1934, the supplementary volume in 1938. This first edition is usually referred to in scientific literature with the abbreviation EI 1 .

Second edition: “The Encyclopaedia of Islam. New Edition "

At the 21st International Congress of Orientalists in Paris in July 1948, it was decided to launch a new edition that was only to appear in English and French. The first fascicles of this second edition appeared from 1954, the first volume was published in 1960. In the printed English edition, most of which is quoted in literature references, the title is The Encyclopaedia of Islam. New Edition . It is also referred to as the Second Edition , especially in the English online edition: Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition . In the scientific literature the abbreviation EI² is often used (also EI2 or EI-2 ). Like the first edition, the second edition is arranged according to Arabic keywords. So if you want to know something about slavery in Islam, you have to search under the keyword ʿAbd , because ʿabd is the Arabic word for “slave”.

Years of publication of the individual volumes of the second edition (English)

The Encyclopaedia of Islam , Second Edition (EI2)
  • Volume 1 (I) (A-B): 1960
  • Volume 2 (II) (C-G): 1965
  • Volume 3 (III) (H-Iram): 1971
  • Volume 4 (IV) (Iran – Kha): 1978
  • Volume 5 (V) (Khe-Mahi): 1986
  • Volume 6 (VI) (Mahk-Mid): 1991
  • Volume 7 (VII) (Mif-Naz): 1993
  • Volume 8 (VIII) (Ned-Sam): 1995
  • Volume 9 (IX) (San-Sze): 1997
  • Volume 10 (X) (T-U): 2000
  • Volume 11 (XI) (W-Z): 2002
  • Volume 12 (XII) (supplementary volume): 2004

Editorial Committee

  • Peri J. Bearman (Volumes VII: 385-1058, VIII, IX)
  • John Burton-Page (Volume II)
  • Emeri J. van Donzel (Volume III)
  • C. Dumont (Volumes I: 321–1359, II, III, IV: 1–768)
  • Fokke Theodoor Dijkema (Volumes IV: 769–1188, V, VI, VII: 1–384)
  • Gerald R. Hawting (Volumes III, IV: 1–256)
  • M. Lefort (Volume IV: 769-1188)
  • Victor Louis Ménage (Volume II)
  • S. Nurit (Volumes IV: 769–1188, V, VI, VII, VIII, IX)
  • Margot Patterson (Volume IV: 1-768)
  • Roger M. Savory (Volume I: 321-1359)
  • Samuel M. Stern (Volume I: 1–320)

Executive Committee

Members (Volume XI):

PJ Bearman; Th. Bianquis; CE Bosworth; JTP de Bruijn; A. Dias Farinha; E. van Donzel; Josef van Ess ; WP Heinrichs; RJ Kasteleijn; AKS Lambton; Bernard Lewis; F. Rosenthal; F. Rundgren; AL Udovitch

Associate members (Volume XI):

Halil İnalcık ; SH Nasr ; M. Talbi

Former members (before Volume XI):

A. Abel; CC Berg; Claude Cahen; R. Ettinghausen; Francesco Gabrieli ; E. García Gómez; Hamilton Alexander Rosskeen Gibb; JH Kramers ; E. Levi-Provençal ; G. Levi Della Vida; T. Lewicki; B. Lewin; Bernard Lewis; E. Littmann ; H. Massé; Ms. Meier; VL Ménage; GC Miles; HS Nyberg; Rudi Paret ; J. Pedersen; Ch. Pellat; NW Posthumus; FH Pruijt; Joseph Schacht; FC again

Former Associate Members (before Volume XI):

HH Abdul Wahab ; A. Adnan Adivar; AS Bazmee Ansari; Hussain Djajadiningrat; AAA Fyzee ; Halil Inalcik; Abd el-Aziz Khoweitir; Mehmet Fuat Köprülü ; Ibrahim Madkour; Khalil Mardam Bey; Naji al-Asil; Muhammad Shafi; Mustafa al-Shihabi; Hasan Taghizade; E. Tyan

Former honorary members (before Volume XI):

G. Levi Della Vida; E. Littmann

Third edition: "Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE"

A third edition, which appears only in English, has been under construction since 2007 under the title "Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE". It is edited by Kate Fleet, Gudrun Krämer , Denis Matringe, John Nawas and Everett Rowson. In contrast to the first two editions, the third edition is no longer ordered according to Arabic but rather English keywords.

Another difference is that the "Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE" is designed as an online lexicon from the outset . The change to the digital medium has the advantage that the reference work no longer has to be structured in strict alphabetical order, which speeds up the production process. Like the online versions of the first two editions, the “Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE” is provided with a paywall . For people who have not taken out a subscription, access is usually only given through libraries that have taken out subscriptions. A printed version of the third edition is still being produced, but it is only available from a few academic libraries.

See also


  • Martin T. Houtsma, TW Arnold, R. Basset, R. Hartmann (eds.): Enzyklopädie des Islam . tape 1 -4 + Supplement, 1913-1938. Brill, suffering.
  • The Encyclopaedia of Islam . Brill, Leiden, OCLC 851295744 (New Edition, 1954-2004, edited by several leading Orientalists, including Gibb, under the auspices of the International Association of Academies, with JH Kramers and E. Levi-Provençal).
  • The Encyclopaedia of Islam . New ed. . Brill, Leiden [u. a.] 1997, ISBN 90-04-08118-6 .


  • Peri Bearman: A History of the Encyclopaedia of Islam. Lockwood Press, Atlanta [GA] 2018, ISBN 978-1-948488-04-4 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. See: Hatem Elliesie: The second volume of the Encyclopaedia Aethiopica in comparison . In: Orientalist literary newspaper . tape 102 , no. 4-5 . Berlin 2007, p. 397-407 .
  2. Overview: Online editions of the Encyclopaedia of Islam
  3. ^ Encyclopaedia Islamica , online version
  4. See the publisher's flyer (PDF) with the heading Encyclopaedia of Islam New Edition Online (EI-2 English) and the note “also called Second Edition ”; Online access to the Second Edition with the standard specification Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition .
  5. The title of the volume is “W – Z”, section “V” only takes up the first one and a half pages.
  6. ^ Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE , accessed November 29, 2019.