Encyclopaedistics or encyclopaedics as a discipline, is the academic scholarship of encyclopedias as sources of encyclopedic knowledge and cultural objects as well; in this sense, this discipline is also known as "encyclopaedia studies" and can be termed as "theoretical encyclopaediography" by analogy with theoretical lexicography. Encyclopaedistics as a practical activity (profession or business) also called "encyclopaedic practice" is the process of assembling encyclopaedias available to the public for sale or for free (encyclopaedia publishing or practical encyclopediography). In this sense, it is the art or craft of writing, compiling, and editing the paper or online encyclopedias. As a practical activity, encyclopaedistics originated in the Middle Ages in connection with the development of compendiums based on alphabetical structuring (e.g. first edition of Polyanthea by Dominicus Nanus Mirabellius).

That's why encyclopaedistics is often defined as "the art and science of selecting and disseminating the information most significant to mankind".[1]

Field of study

Encyclopaedistics is a specialized aspect of information science and communication science.[2] At the same time, encyclopaedistics is also considered as one of scholarly disciplines which are seen as auxiliary for historical research (auxiliary sciences of history) .[3] Third, encyclopaedics is a domain of philosophy (Romanticism). This term associated with German philosophers of the 18th century, such as Novalis, Friedrich Schlegel, who sought to create a "Scientific Bible" - both real and ideal book as the quintessence of human education (enlightenment).[4]

In any case, the most popular topics in encyclopaedia studies refferd the history of organization of encyclopaedic knowledge, encyclopaedic knowledge determination and selection, glossary composition, current state of development of encyclopaedic activity, features of making encyclopaedias and encyclopaedic articles, usage, role and significance of encyclopaedias, typology of encyclopaedic literature, encyclopaedists and encyclopaedic schools, opposition of classical encyclopaedias and Wikipedia as well as paper encyclopaedias and online encyclopaedias, case experience in building encyclopedias etc.

In general, scholarly studies contribute to appearance of successful well-crafted encyclopaedias with high-quality articles.

Contemporary encyclopaedic practice

Today, academic institutions, universities, and publishing companies worldwide are engaged in encyclopaedic activity building national, multinational (universal), regional and subject-specific encyclopaedias, or doing studies related encyclopaedias. The development of national encyclopaedias is one of the prerogatives of the European Parliament in the policy of protection of accurate and verified information and in the fight against mis- and disinformation[5] as well as in the policy of protecting, promoting and projecting Europe's values and interests in the world.[6] The International Encyclopedia Conference serves a platform for professional and scientific communication between publishers of national and multinational encyclopaedias.


  1. ^ Shores, Louis (1976). Reference as the Promotion of Free Inquiry. Libraries Unlimited. ISBN 9780872871564.
  2. ^ Jermen, Nataša; Kraus, Cvijeta; Starčević Stančić, Irina (2015). "Lexicography and Encyclopaedistics in the Digital Environment" (PDF). Department of Information and Communication Sciences, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Zagreb, Croatia. doi:10.17234/infuture.2015.9 . Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ Bereziuk, Tetiana; Ishchenko, Oleksandr; Ocheretianko, Svitlana; Pylypchuk, Ruslan; Savchenko, Oleh; Feshchenko, Nataliia; Shushkivskyi, Anatolii (2018-12-22). Zhelezniak, Mykola (ed.). "Materials to Glossary for Encyclopedia Science" . The Encyclopedia Herald of Ukraine (in Ukrainian). 10: 50–82. doi:10.37068/evu.10.5 . ISSN 2707-000X .
  4. ^ Novalis, 1772-1801. (2007). Notes for a romantic encyclopaedia : Das Allgemeine Brouillon . Wood, David W., 1968-. Albany: State University of New York Press. ISBN 978-1-4294-7128-2. OCLC 137659435 .
  5. ^ Union, Publications Office of the European (2019-01-15). "Europe's online encyclopaedias : equal access to knowledge of general interest in a post-truth era?" . op.europa.eu. doi:10.2861/002977 . Retrieved 2020-12-08.
  6. ^ "Protecting, promoting and projecting Europe's values and interests in the world - Think Tank" . www.europarl.europa.eu. Retrieved 2020-12-09.

Categories: Encyclopedias | Online encyclopedias | Information science | History | Lexicography | Publishing | Humanities

Information as of: 11.07.2021 10:43:06 CEST

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