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REL 121: From the Word to the World

A Guide to Library Resources

Visual representations of a Biblical text can provide fresh insights, bringing its message into new perspective.

Try an Advanced Search in WorldCat  like the following:

Useful Subject headings:

  • Art and religion
  • Biblical figures In art
  • Bible and art
  • Illumination of books & manuscripts
  • Book illustration
  • Glass painting and staining
  • Christian art and symbolism
  • Jesus Christ in art


For example, in the following article, Gustave Dore's "Jesus and the Woman of Samaria" is compared with Dore's "Eliezer and Rebekah at the Well."

Fewell, Danna Nolan, and Gary A Phillips. "Drawn to Excess, or Reading Beyond Betrothal." Semeia 77, (1997): 23-58. ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials, EBSCOhost.

Useful Subject Headings related to the Bible and Art:

  • The Bible in art
  • Samaritan woman (Biblical figure) in art
  • Jesus Christ in art
  • Icons (Religious art)
  • Iconoclasm
  • Christian art & symbolism
  • Christian saints in art
  • Christianity & art
  • Church decoration & ornament
  • Church architecture
  • Churches
  • Stained glass windows
  • Painting
  • Mural painting & decoration
  • Painting exhibitions
  • Sculpture

Go to  EBSCO Services on the library Databases page and try the following search. Limit by Image Quick View.

Go to JSTOR and try the following search after selecting Advanced Search.  For additional help with JSTOR, look under the Databases tab on the library website.

You could start with a Simple Search in WorldCat, our library catalogue:

Go to the Description of relevant books and scroll down to the Subjects field. Take note of relevant subject headings.

Then try an Advanced Search in WorldCat  using keywords from the Subject headings found in the Descriptions of relevant books:

Useful Subject Headings:

  • Bible stories
  • Bible. Old Testament
  • Bible. New Testament
  • Juvenile literature
  • Juvenile works
  • Noah (Biblical character) Juvenile literature
  • Jonah (Biblical prophet)

AND finds all terms

OR finds either term

mt: juv finds juvenile/children's books (mt: main target audience)

Search Google Images and restrict results to public domain images in the size of your choice:

Search for a Bible topic in the Wikimedia Category: Bible in art

Peter Turkstra Library,  Redeemer University , 777 Garner Road East, Ancaster, ON, L9K 1J4, Canada
Circulation Desk Telephone: 905.648.2139 ext. 4266, Email: