East Asia


The majority of the holdings of the East Asia Department are recorded the Online Catalogue of the East Asia Department (EA-OPAC) and StaBiKat in original script. Collections are mostly catalogued with the titles of the individual works they contain.

Holdings up to 1945, bequests and private collections can be found in conventional card catalogues; these must be consulted in situ or via a catalogue enquiry with the East Asia Department.
For some materials only printed catalogues exist. They will successively also be integrated into the EA-OPAC.

Please note that, due to technical reasons, newly received materials will show up in the OPAC with a certain delay. In case of doubt, the East Asia Department holds more titles than those shown in the OPAC at a given moment.

Please contact us. We can help in many of these instances as well.


East Asia-OPAC

The main tool for searching the holdings of the East Asia Department is the EA-OPAC of the East Asian collection. The EA-OPAC documents all new acquisitions since 1951. Documentation for new accessions since 1986 is more or less complete; titles are analytically catalogued, i.e., collections are documented down to the level of single titles.

As another segment of the EA-OPAC, your search can include, via the "Titleset-selection" of the OPAC, the catalogue of the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin, StaBiKat, which contains publications on East, Southeast, and Central Asia in western languages, materials in Southeast Asian languages, part of the Central Asian collection, as well as periodicals in Asian languages (such as newspapers, journals, yearbooks). For up-to-date results for works in Western languages, we recommend a separate search in the main catalogue of the Staatsbibliothek, the StaBiKat.

The CrossAsia-segments in the EA-OPAC allow bibliographical searches in a number of important data bases of the CrossAsia portal. With regard to e-books, they include for example Chinamaxx, China Ancient Books (基本古籍庫), and the Apabi-reference works; with regard to electronical journals, the of China Academic Journals (CNKI-CAJ) are searchable on the article level.

The catalogue entries for print media provide shelf marks with direct links to the loan system, as well as to the online order form of the Blauer Leihverkehr (BL), the inter library loan service for materials in Asian languages. Catalogue entries of electronical media usually provide links for direct remote access (requires log-in).

Zeitschriftendatenbank - ZDB

Journals, newspapers, and other periodicals such as yearbooks, can also be searched in the periodicals database ZDB. Titles are recorded in original script and with romanisation. The ZDB is being produced and maintained cooperatively by some 4,300 libraries, documenting all holdings of periodical materials in German and Austrian libraries.

The holdings of materials in East Asian languages at the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin was kept in separate card catalogues, of which several were created in the course of time. They are in the process of being included into the OPAC and thus step by step become obsolete. The following catalogues are, however, still accessible; they are located in front of the entrance to the Joint Open Access Reading Room (OLS) of the Oriental and East Asia Departments.


Title and author catalogues for Chinese works (accession 1986 - ca. 2003). These were the basis for the electronical catalogue and are now in their entirety contained in the EA-OPAC.

Alphabetical Title and Author Catalogue of the East Asia Department

This catalogue registers East Asian materials of the accession years 1951 to about 1986 (with addenda). Wade-Giles romanisation was used for titles in Chinese and the modified Hepburn system for titles in Japanese. This catalogue (excluding the addenda) exists also in printed format.

Old House-1-Catalogue

Registers holdings up to 1945. Includes also the catalogued Chinese and Japanese materials from the Deutsche Staatsbibliothek (East Berlin); separate title and author catalogues.

The first printed catalogue of the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin's institutional predecessor's holdings was produced by provost Andreas Müller. It lists a small collection of 25 Chinese titles. It was attached as a single sheet of paper to Müller's scholarly piece on the question of the solar eclipse when Jesus Christ was crucified (copy of UFB Erfurt/Gotha) from 1685.

The "other part" (der „Andere Theil“) of this catalogue appeared in 1683, containing but 5 titles, including, however, an extensive list of contents of the Chinese historical work Zizhi tongjian 資治通鋻.

Other historical catalogues preserved are those authored by both Klaproth, and Schott who in turn also list just a selection of the actual inventory, Klaproth's work even wanting of the shelfmarks.

Postdating Schott’s catalogue is the East Asia Department's oldest handwritten catalogue in bookform. It was started in 1847 and continued until about 1913, listing all Libri sinici shelfmarks (Libri sin. 1 to 1603). These are followed by shelfmarks Libri sin. N.S. ("Neue Sammlung," i.e., new collection), with Libri sin. N.S. 2049 having been assigned to a title which was accessed in 1939.
In East Germany (former DDR), the Libri sin. N.S. shelfmarks were continued, partly by directly continuing (Libri sin. N.S. 2050 to 2417), partly starting anew with 10000 (Libri sin. 10001 to 12639), at which under nos. 12500 to 12639 are registered periodicals. With the exception of these periodicals shelfmarks, the Libri sin. and the Libri sin. N.S. shelfmarks are contained in the old House-1-Catalogue (cf. above) for user reference.
In West Germany, the Libri sin. N.S. shelfmarks where initially continued with nos. Libri sin. N.S. 9000. But after just 20 numbers had been assigned, they were changed to pure numerical shelfmarks. These are listed in the alphabetical title- und author catalogues, and are being successively integrated into the East Asia Department's OPAC. As for those segments of holdings that have not yet been catalogued, such as the Otto Franke library, the shelfmark Libri sin. N.S. will be continued in the 9000-range. These titles are listed in the EA-OPAC only.
The historical printed catalogues as well as the manuscript catalogue volumes of the historical holdings of the East Asia Department have been digitised and are linked below.
This list is complemented by two more historical catalogues or, respectively, library references, in bookform, to the Chinese- and Manchu-language holdings. The first of these is the "Register of Chinese Manuscripts and Printed Works in the Library of Dr. Friedrich Hirth („Verzeichniss chinesischer Manuskripte und Druckwerke aus der Bibliothek des Dr. Friedrich Hirth“) which was purchased by the Prussian State Library in 1890. The second is the catalogue of the Peking Collection („Pekinger Sammlung“) of 1911. Titles registered in these bookform catalogues are today, however, only partly preserved in Berlin.
Fragments of the Libri sin., Libri sin. N.S., of the Hirth Library and, the Peking Collection, are today in the Biblioteka Jagiellońska in Krakow, Poland. Many titles of the historical East Asia collection at Berlin and Krakow has been digitised in the projects SSG 6,25 digital and Berlin-Krakow. Digitasiation of further titles can be requested via CrossAsia DoD.


Bibliography of handwritten and printed Catalogues


Müller, Andreas: Anderer Theil Des Catalogi der Sinesischen Bücher / Bey der Churfürstl. Brandenburgischen Bibliothec, Zu Cölln an der Spree Anno 1683 / Auff Churfürstl. gnädigstem Special-Befehl in unterthänigsten Gehorsam Von Andrea Müllero Greiffenhagio. Churfürstl. Consitorial-Rahte und Probsten in Berlin auffgesetzt.

Mentzel, Christian: Kleiner Catalogus oder Kurtzer Bericht aller Chineesischen Bücher, welche auf Sr. Churfürstlichen Durchlaucht: zu Brandenb. Bibliotheca Anno 1685 20/10 Febr. seind befunden ... (Manuskript erhalten in Biblioteka Narodowa, Warschau)

List of Libri sinensis  from the Index of Oriental Manuscripts of the  Catalogus Manuscriptorum Bibliothecae Electoralis Brandenburgensis Coloniensis anno 1668 by Johann Raue, the first librarian of the "Churfürstliche Bibliothek zu Cölln an der Spree". The list was inserted later and corresponds to Müller's "Einblattkalalog" of 1685. The list was inserted later and corresponds to Müller's "Einblattkalalog" of 1685.

Klaproth, Heinrich Julius: Verzeichniss [Verzeichnis] der chinesischen und mandshuischen Bücher und Handschriften der Königlichen Bibliothek zu Berlin. Paris 1822.

Schott, Wilhelm: Verzeichniss der chinesischen und mandschu-tungusischen Bücher und Handschriften der Königlichen Bibliothek zu Berlin: Eine Fortsetzung des im Jahre 1822 erschienenen Klaproth'schen Verzeichnisses. Berlin 1840.

Codices manuscripti et Libri Sinici = Alte Sammlung (1847-1913; contains the shelf marks Libri sin. 1 up to Libri sin. 1603; only titles with a red tick are available in Berlin; in the left column references to entries in the catalogs Klaproth (K) and Schott (Sch) were noted).

Hirth, Friedrich: Verzeichniss chinesischer Manuskripte und Druckwerke aus der Bibliothek des Dr. Friedrich Hirth 

Hülle, Hermann: Katalog der Pekinger Sammlung (angefertigt 1911) 

Hülle, Hermann: Libri sinici. Neue Sammlung (begonnen 1913)  / [geführt von Hermann Hülle] (1913 to approx. 1933; contains the shelf marks Libri sin. NS 1 to Libri sin. NS 1650; titles with a red tick are available in Berlin, those with “K” in Krakow, Biblioteka Jagiellońska, the whereabouts of titles without a note is unclear ).

Fuchs, Walter: Chinesische und Mandjurische Handschriften und seltene Drucke. Nebst einer Standortliste der sonstigen Mandjurica. Reihe: VOHD, Bd. 12,1. Wiesbaden 1966. (enth. u.a. Bestand der Staatsbibliothek Berlin).

Kraft, Eva: Japanische Handschriften und traditionelle Drucke aus der Zeit vor 1868 im Besitz der Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz. Wiesbaden 1982.

Krempien, Rainer: Staatsbibliothek Preußischer Kulturbesitz. Zeitschriftenkatalog der Ostasienabteilung. Bd. 1-4. Berlin 1978-1983.

Krempien, Rainer: Staatsbibliothek Preußischer Kulturbesitz. Katalog der Ostasienabteilung. Hrsg. von . Bd. 1-19. Osnabrück 1983-1986.

Walravens, Hartmut (Bearb.): Libri Sinici. Neue Sammlung 1913–1945. Ein Bestandskatalog der Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin Preussischer Kulturbesitz. Reihe: VOHD, Bd. 12,6: Chinesische und manjurische Handschriften und seltene Drucke. Stuttgart 2009.

Unschuld, Paul Ulrich und Zheng Jinshen: Chinese Traditional Healing: The Berlin Collections of Manuscript Volumes from the 16th through the Early 20th Century. Sir Henry Wellcome Asian Series, Vol. 10. 3 Bde. Leiden 2012.

Search for titles in regional languages

We recommend to search for title in Chinese in simplified characters. For rare books and titles acquired since 2015 search in traditional characters is possibly as well. Hanyu-Pinyin is used for romanisation, please search syllable for syllable.

The retro-conversion of the card catalogue is almost completed. Thus Japanese titles are recorded in the Online Catalogue of the East Asia Department (EA-OPAC) in original script. Please use the normal Japanese writing system with kanji and kana (kanji kana majiribun) for searching. A search in Latin Romanisation (rōmaji) or katakana does not cover all records. In the case of collections (e.g. ○○資料集, ○○全集, ○○選集) in many, but not in all cases, the contents are catalogued on the level of single titles. About 95% of the titles in the pre-modern collection are registered. The cataloguing of several bequests and private collections is still in progress. In case of inquiries, please do not hesitate to contact us.

In addition the majority of the Japanese titles can also be searched in the database Cinii Books (https://ci.nii.ac.jp/books/) provided by the National Institute for Informatics (NII, Tōkyō). The Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin is appears there under her Japanese name ベルリン国立図書館. By using an ident number, the so called Library ID/図書館 ID, it is possible to narrow a search down to the collection of a single library. In case of the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin this ident number is: fa02157x.

The Central Asia collection covers titles in Mongolian, Tibetan, Uighur, Kyrgyz and Kazakh languages. A large part of the collection (more than 21,500 titles) consists of titles in Mongolian. Most of these titles were published after the Second World War, both in Mongolia and in China (Inner Mongolia). Some titles are in Cyrillic and Mongolian script. The romanisation of the Mongolian script follows the Balk-Janhunen romanisation.

More than 17,800 titles are recorded in Tibetan. These publications are from China as well as from Tibetan exile areas in India and Nepal.

More than 5,200 titles in the Uighur language have been documented in the catalogue up to now, and those in Cyrillic script will be added soon. More than 690 are in Kazakh, and Kyrgyz titles will also be added soon. Most of the titles in these three languages come from Xinjiang and are available in Arabic script.

Please note: For titles from Nepal and Bhutan as well as Central Asian titles in Turkic languages which are available in Cyrillic script, please contact the Oriental Department (Research areas: Ancient Oriental studies, Indian studies, General Oriental studies, South Asian studies, as well as Iranian studies, Turkology, Central Asian studies).

Titles are available via the East Asia OPAC as well as in the StaBiKat.

Romanisation and Transliteration


You may choose between two options: Staatsbibliothek Local Lending and the Blauer Leihverkehr (BL).

Furthermore you may use all other kinds of inter-library loan facilities like Subito or International inter-library loan services (cf. Access and Services).