Pliny the Elder
Encyclopedias have been in this land since 2000 years. The oldest is the Naturalis Historia, written by Pliny the Elder in Roman times. It spans 37 sections, covering art and structural design, natural history, medicine, geography, geology and all other facets present near it. The facts were compiled from 2000 different works by 200 authors, but he was unable to review the entries. It was published in 77-79 AD. Before, the works of Marcus Terentius Varro were already there, but were lost in time.
The Etymologiae (around 630) became known as the first encyclopedia of the Middle Ages compiled by St. Isidore of Seville, a great scholar of the Middle Ages. This encyclopedia spans 448 chapters in 20 volumes, with quotes and excerpts from the work of other authors.
The High Middle Ages saw reference mainly to Bartholomeus Anglicus’s De proprietatibus rerum (1240).
The Majus speculum of Vincent de Beauvais (1260) was quite progressive, with over 3 million words in the late medieval period.
The Suda is a huge encyclopedia of Byzantine times in the ancient Mediterranean world. It is written in the Greek lexical style, containing 30,000 entries.
The modern idea of a print encyclopedia, which could be widely circulated for general use, came with Chambers’s Cyclopaedia (1728) and Encyclopedie of Diderot and D’Alembert (1751 onwards), as well as Encyclopedia and Conversations-Lexikon. . This included comprehensive topics that had a broad scope and were detailed and organized. The House dictionary might follow John Harris’s example of Lexicon Technicum.
Sir Thomas Browne, a renowned English scholar and physician, used the word encyclopedia in 1646 in his vulgar errors, where common errors of his time were refuted. This encyclopedia was structured on the proven Renaissance scheme or “scale of creation.” It goes up the hierarchical tree, starting from the mineral, plant, animal, human and planetary worlds, to the cosmological worlds.
John Harris now receives credibility for the alphabetic format he introduced in 1704 with his Lexicon Technicum: A Universal Dictionary of Arts and Sciences in English: Explaining Not Just the Art Terms, but the Arts themselves. “He emphasized science as understanding In the eighteenth century, its topics still extended beyond science, including the humanities and fine arts, such as law, commerce, music, and heraldry.
In the early 1920s, the Harmsworth Universal Encyclopedia and the Children’s Encyclopedia became popular and accessible resources. In the US, the 1950s and 1960s saw several major editions being introduced and gaining popularity. They were sold through installments. WorldBook, Funk and Wagnalls were the best.
In the second half, several encyclopedias were published. His work was remarkable in synthesizing important topics from specific fields obtained through new research. Elsevier’s Encyclopedia of Philosophy and Economics Manuals were two such books. Most academic subjects are covered in a dedicated volume, including narrow topics such as bioethics and African American history.