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Dictionaries - Language

Oxford English Dictionary This 20-volume work (2nd ed) can be searched online together with revisions being made for the 3rd ed. (Subscription)

Cambridge Dictionaries
A selection of dictionaries published by Cambridges University Press can be searched; also provides links to sites for language teachers and researchers.

Collins Word Exchange
An online dictionary and discussion forum for words (many of them slang) used in everyday speech but not yet in dictionaries; includes a dictionary of abbreviations used in mobile phone text messages and other word tools.

OneLook Dictionaries
Can be used to find definitions or translations of words.

Oxford dictionary of National biography
National record of men and women who have shaped history and culture, worldwide, from the Romans to the 21st century.

Visual Dictionary Online
An all-in-one reference which provides images, words and definitions. Search the themes to quickly locate words, or find the meaning of a word by viewing the image it represents. This dictionary from Merriam-Webster helps you learn English in a visual and accessible way.

Provides access to more than 1 800 dictionaries with more than 250 languages; its predecessor (A Web of Online Dictionaries), was launched in 1995 by Dr. Robert Beard at Bucknell University as a research tool for the world's linguistic community but it is now a commercial venture.

Webster's Online Dictionary
Contains at least 3,000,000 words and expressions from 90 modern and 10 ancient languages
Translates words in French, Spanish and Italian. Beware of pop-ups!

Dictionaries - Subject 

Dictionary of computing with over 13000 definitions and acronyms; and anything else to do with computing. Begun in 1985, it is edited by Denis Howe.

Online Dictionary for Library and Information Science (ODLIS)
Alphabetical browsing supported in this dictionary compiled by Joan M. Reitz.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
Biographies of people who shaped the history of the British Isles from the earliest times to the year 2002. (Subscription)

Describes itself as "an online dictionary and search engine for Internet technology definitions".


Blackwell encyclopedia of sociology

Catholic Encyclopedia
Volunteers throughout the world are building an online version of the 1913 Catholic Encyclopedia; they contribute by locating a copy of the work, transcribing an article, and sending it via e-mail for publication on this website.

Contemporary Women's Issues
Contemporary Women's Issues (CWI) is a multidisciplinary, full-text database that brings together relevant content from mainstream periodicals, "gray" literature, and the alternative press, with a focus on the critical issues and events that influence women's lives in more than 190 countries. CWI includes English-language titles from East and West Africa, Asia, and South and Central America, the Caribbean, North America and Europe

Encyclopaedia Britannica
Articles on different subjects, Britannica's World Atlas, Timelines and Year-in-Review as well as Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary and Thesaurus.
Encyclopedia offering over 57,000 articles from the the Columbia Encyclopedia's 6th edition; frequently updated by HighBeam Research. Beware of pop-ups!

Encyclopedia of Case Study research
An encyclopedia encompassing breadth and depth—breadth of disciplines, philosophical paradigms, and geographic situatedness of case studies, and depth of experience, knowledge, and insight into case study research—

Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science (ELIS) 3rd edition
Edited by Miriam Drake, the 3rd ed covers topics which include database design, intellectual property, user services, and the Internet. Entries also cover the activities of selected national and academic libraries, as well as library and information professional associations. (Subscription)

International Encyclopedia of Labour law
.English translations of the important labour and industrial relations laws of over 20 nations. Covers individual as well as collective labour relations (Subscription)

Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology
A search engine and interface which allows you to retrieve information covering the entire chemical industry and allied fields. (Subscription)

New Encyclopedia of Africa
A reworking of the classic Encyclopedia of Africa South of the Sahara (1997), this new version covers the entire continent and expands both the geographical range (by treating North Africa) and the chronological coverage (by addressing the twenty-first century). Anthropology, geography, history and cultural studies combine in this reference work to present Africa in a new light.
The print set in 5 vols is housed in the Cecil Renaud Main Library, Pietermaritzburg. (Subscription)

Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Covers Anglo-American, ethical and political, cross-cultural, interdisciplinary, continental and contemporary philosophy; over 25,000 hot-linked cross-references between articles and new links to other editorially reviewed websites. A useful resource for all levels of users. (Subscription)

Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry A state-of-the-art reference work detailing the science and technology in all areas of industrial chemistry. Subject areas include: inorganic and organic chemicals, advanced materials, pharmaceuticals, polymers and plastics, metals and alloys, biotechnology and biotechnological products, food chemistry, process engineering and unit operations, analytical methods and environmental protection. (Subscription)

Wiley Blackwell encyclopedia of literature

Wiley Encyclopedia of Computer science and engineering

The free encyclopedia you can edit.

Free e-Book Collections

African Digital Library
Provides a range of information resources. Registration is necessary and the username and password e-mailed to those who register must be used in order to access the digital library resources. The content of the African Digital Library is available at the Netlibrary.

African Writers Series
Heinemann's African Writers Series publishes texts of modern African literature. This electronic edition provides 181 volumes of fiction, poetry, drama and non-fictional prose, including works by Chinua Achebe, Ama Ata Aidoo, Steve Biko, Buchi Emecheta, Nadine Gordimer, Bessie Head, Doris Lessing, Dambudzo Marechera, Christopher Okigbo, Okot p'Bitek and Tayeb Salih.

Digital Books
Maintained by Matthew McClintock, this site provides many e-books from Project Gutenberg

Gender Mainstreaming in HIV-AIDS
This report contains the presentations delivered at the Satelite session on Gender Mainstreaming, 7th AIDS impact conference, Cape Town, April 2005

Knovel chemistry, mathematics and physics books
Full-text of the following titles is available in pdf format: Essential practices for managing chemical reactivity hazards; Handbook of mathematical functions with formulas, graphs and mathematical tables; International critical tables of numerical data, physics, chemistry and technology; Knovel critical tables; Smithsonian physical tables, 9th edition.


National Academies Press
Provides access to full-text e-books in a range of subjects including chemistry, physics, education, engineering and the sciences.

The site provides access to the full-text of nearly 5,000 reference works, scholarly monographs, literature and fiction as well as nearly 3,500 publicly accessible titles. Subscribed content is listed in the library OPAC. Results of searches in the SACat database via SABINET Online often give links to e-books available through NetLibrary. 


Project Gutenberg Includes the texts of books that are out of copyright, most of them published before 1923, chosen and formatted by








British Library Project  making rare books in its collection available online.



Maps and Route Planners

Shell Geostar journey planner
Local route planner with maps



United States Patent and Trademark Office
provides access to issued US Patents since 1790 and Patent Applications published since 15 March 2001. Patents issued from 1790-1975 are searchable only by patent number and current US classifications but from 1976 onwards the full-text of patents is fully searchable.

European Patent Office
provides access to Europe's network of patent databases with much of the data dating back to 1970. Search results display bibliographic data, an English-language abstract and if available, drawings and the full-text of the documents. Images of documents are available back to 1920 for the most important countries.


Reference Works

Africa Yearbook
The Africa Yearbook covers major domestic political developments, the foreign policy and socio-economic trends in sub-Sahara Africa all related to developments in one calendar year. The Yearbook contains articles on all sub-Saharan states, each of the four sub-regions (West, Central, Eastern, Southern Africa) focusing on major cross-border developments and sub-regional organizations as well as one article on continental developments and one on European-African relations.

ASM Handbooks Online
American Society for Metals handbook featuring the complete content of twenty ASM Handbook volumes plus two ASM Desk Editions. (Subscription limited to Durban campuses)

Bartleby Reference Works
Unlimited access to a range of reference works including encyclopedias, dictionaries, quotations and Roget's thesaurus
Contains over 25,000 biographies, at least some of which are very brief. Beware of pop-ups!

Digital History: a guide to gathering, preserving and presenting the past on the web
This book provides a plainspoken and thorough introduction to the web for historians, teachers.
students, archivists, museum curators, professors and amateur enthusiastswho wish to produce online historical work, or to build upon and improve the project


Encyclopedia of Case Study research
An encyclopedia encompassing breadth and depth—breadth of disciplines, philosophical paradigms, and geographic situatedness of case studies, and depth of experience, knowledge, and insight into case study research—

Europe in Figures: eurostat yearbook 2008
Presents a comprehensive selection of statistical data on the European Union, its Member States and candidate countries.

Grove Music Online
Comprises the full-text of The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, second edition, edited by Stanley Sadie and John Tyrrell (London, 2001), The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, edited by Stanley Sadie (London, 1992), and The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, second edition, edited by Barry Kernfeld (London, 2002). (Subscription)

International Who's Who
Provides basic biographical information about 23,000 influential people living now. (Subscription)

ISQua Accreditations Toolkit
PDF copy of "Some issues in the design and redesign of external health care assessment and improvement systems" by Charles D Shaw, 2004

Managing Digital Collections
compiled by the National Research Foundation (NRF) in collaboration with experts from stakeholder institutions examines opportunities for the production of data, digital content, digital collections, institutional and subject repositories, digital libraries and archives

South African Institute of Race Relations
The Institute is an independent think-tank producing research, policy critiques, and risk analysis on South Africa. Our fields of expertise include the economy, business, labour, education, demographics, living conditions, crime, security, healthcare, land reform, service delivery, politics, and government affairs.

World of Learning
Contact and other information about institutions of higher learning around the world including universities, colleges, libraries, archives, museums, research institutions and learned societies. (Subscription) The Universal Currency Converter
Performs currency conversions

Medical Works

Gray's Anatomy 20th edition
Anatomy text book, with explanatory diagrams.

Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine 16th edition
Edited by DL Kasper, et al, this edition is in 16 parts and includes appendices. (Subscription)

Merck Manual of Medical Information, 2nd home ed.
Explains disorders, who is likely to get them, their symptoms, how they're diagnosed, how they might be prevented, and how they can be treated; also provides information about prognosis.

Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy, 17th ed
Provides useful clinical information to practicing physicians, medical students, interns, residents, nurses, pharmacists, and other health care professionals in a concise, complete, and accurate manner. Covers all the subjects expected in a textbook of internal medicine as well as detailed information on pediatrics, psychiatry, obstetrics, gynecology, dermatology, pharmacology, ophthalmology, otolaryngology, and a number of special subjects.

Merck Manual of Geriatrics, 3rd ed
Comprehensive text book on geriatric care and disorders.

Pocket book of Hospital Care for Children: guidelines for the management of common illnesses with limited resources
This is a pocket-sized manual for use by doctors, senior nurses and other senior health workers who are responsible for the care of young children at the first referral level in developing countries.

MDConsult Full-text Textbooks
Subscribed content includes these titles :
Abeloff: Clinical Oncology
Adkinson: Middleton Allergy: Principles and Practice
Auerbach: Wilderness Medicine
Behrman: Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics
Braunwald: Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine
Brenner: Brenner & Rector's The Kidney
Browner: Skeletal Trauma: Basic Science, Management, and Reconstruction
Canale: Campbell's Operative Orthopaedics
Cheng-Zaas: The Osler Medical Handbook
Cohen and Powderly: Infectious Diseases
Cummings et al: Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
DeLee: DeLee and Drez's Orthopaedic Sports Medicine;
Duthie: Practice of Geriatrics
Feldman: Sleisenger & Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease
Ferri: Ferri Best Test: A Practical Guide to Clinical Laboratory Medicine and Diagnostic Imaging
Ferri: Ferri's Clinical Advisor: Instant Diagnosis and Treatment
Ferri: Practical Guide to the Care of the Medical Patient
Frontera: Essentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Ford: Clinical Toxicology
Gabbe: Obstetrics: Normal and Problem Pregnancies
Gershon: Klugman's Infectious Diseases of Children
Goetz: Textbook of Clinical Neurology
Goldberger: Clinical Electrocardiography
Goldman: Cecil Textbook of Medicine
Grainger: Grainger & Allison's Diagnostic Radiology
Green: Skeletal Trauma in Children
Habif: Clinical Dermatology: Color Guide to Diagnosis and Therapy
Harris: Kelley's Textbook of Rheumatology;
Hoffman: Hematology: Basic Principles and Practice
Jacobson: Psychiatric Secrets
Johns Hopkins: The Harriet Lane Handbook
Kumar: Robbins and Cotran: Pathologic Basis of Disease
Larsen: Williams Textbook of Endocrinology
Long: Principles and Practices of Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Mandell: Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases
Marx: Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice
Miller: Anesthesia
Moore & Jefferson: Handbook of Medical Psychiatry
Murray & Nadel: Textbook of Respiratory Medicine
Noble: Textbook of Primary Care Medicine
Park: Pediatric Cardiology for Practitioners
Rakel: Conn's Current Therapy
Rakel: Textbook of Family Practice
Rakel: Integrative Medicine
Roberts: Clinical Procedures in Emergency Medicine
Stenchever: Comprehensive Gynecology
Townsend: Sabiston Textbook of Surgery
Yanoff: Ophthalmology
Walsh: Campbell's Urology

February 2015