There are a lot of Japanese primary sources on the Internet now, and the amount is increasing every day, but it can be difficult to find things, because the content is squirreled away in different nooks and crannies on the Web. I’ve been collecting some useful databases here as I come across them. It’s a work in progress that gets updated whenever I have time to spare for it.
Ideally, we could download digital copies of the sources onto our own hard drives, where a single search would enable us to look through everything at once in whatever way we like. However, very few sites provide this kind of access. As a consequence, you may have to spend some time overcoming the idiosyncrasies of each search engine, and you will rarely be able to conduct complex searches. Nevertheless, these are invaluable resources, and compared to what we had available even just a few years ago, it is a huge step forward to have them online at all.
Sometimes, I single out sources that I think are especially significant, well-annotated, or somehow more useful to view on their own — these are categorized and tagged as Primary Sources 一次史料. A table of contents for these posts is here.
Databases / Source Collections
- Kōgakkan University’s Engishiki Kensaku Shisutemu 延喜式検索システム [Kōgakkan University Engishiki Search System]
- Kokubungaku Kenkyū Shiryōkan 国文学研究資料館 [National Institute of Japanese Literature]. “Denshi shiryōkan” 電子史料館 [Electronic historical materials archive]. This has links to a number of full-text databases. I have included them below.
- —–. “Azuma kagami dētābēsu” 吾妻鏡データベース.
- —–. “Eiri Genji monogatari dētābēsu” 絵入源氏物語データベース.
- —–. “Jige kaden Haga jinmei jiten dētabēsu” 地下家伝・芳賀人名辞典データベース. Haga Yaichi, Nihon jinmei jiten (1914) and Mikami Kagefumi and Masamune Atsuo, Jige kaden (1937). A digital copy of the latter can be downloaded at http://archive.org/details/jigekaden038800uoft.
- —–. “Koji ruien dētābēsu” 古事類苑データベース.
- —–. “Koten senshū dētābēsu” 古典選集本文データベース [Anthology of Japanese classics full-text database].
- —–. “Nijūichi-dai shū dētābēsu” 二十一代集データベース.
- —–. “Rekishi monogatari dētābēsu” 歴史物語データベース. Contains 栄花物語, 大鏡, 今鏡, 水鏡, and 増鏡.
- —–. “Renga, ennō, gagaku dētābēsu” 連歌・演能・雅楽データベース [Renga, ennō, gagaku database].
- —–. “Shin Nara ehon dētābēsu” 新奈良絵本データベース [New Nara ehon database].
- —–. “Shozō kikan to no renkei ni yoru Nihon kotenseki dejitaru gazō dētābēsu” 所蔵機関との連携による日本古典籍デジタル画像データベース.
- —–. “Zōshoin dētābēsu” 蔵書印データベース [Collectors’ seals database].