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Below are selected examples of general architectural and urban histories and surveys which provide good overviews, bibliographies and starting points for more detailed research.
- Architecture source book, by Vernon Gibberd. Secaucus, NJ: Wellfleet, 1988.
- Architecture, the worlds greatest buildings explored and explained, Neil Stevenson. New York: DK Pub., 1997. Annotated guides. Concise text and colorful illustrations.
- Atlas of world art, ed. by John Onians. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.
- Buildings that changed the world, Klaus Richold and Bernhard Graf. New York: Prestel, 1999.
- Cities of tomorrow, an intellectual history of urban planning and design in the twentieth century, Peter Hall. 3rd. ed. Oxford, UK; Malden, Mass: Blackwell Publishers, 2002.
- dtv-Atlas Baukunst, by Werner Muller; Tafeln, Entwurf, Gunther Vogel; Ausfuhrung, Inge und Istvan Szasz. Originalausg., 11 Aufl. Munchen: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag; 1997. 2 vols.
- History of architecture: settings and rituals, Spiro Kostof. 2nd ed New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.
United States and the western world
- America preserved, a checklist of historic buildings, structures, and sites, recorded by The Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record ; introduction by Marilyn Ibach and Georgette R. Wilson. 60th anniversity ed. Washington, D.C. : Library of Congress, Cataloging Distribution Service, 1995.
- American architecture since 1780, a guide to the styles, Marcus Whiffen. Rev. ed. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1992.
- American building, the environmental forces that shape it, James Marston Fitch with William Bobenhausen. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.
- American buildings and their architects, William H. Pierson, Jr. Garden City, N.Y., Doubleday, 1970-
- Architecture, from prehistory to post-modernism: the western tradition, by Marvin Trachtenberg, Isabelle Hyman. New York: H.N. Abrams, 1986.
- Architecture in the United States, Dell Upton. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 1998. Oxford history of art.
- Architecture, the critics' choice: 150 masterpieces of western architecture, edited by Dan Cruickshank. New York: Watson-Guptill Publications, 2000.
- A chronology of western architecture, by Doreen Yarwood. New York: Facts on File Publications, 1987.
- A field guide to contemporary American architecture, Carol Rifkind. New York:New American Library, 1980.
- A history of building types, Nikolaus Pevsner. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1976.
- A history of western architecture, by David Watkin. 4th ed.New York: Watson-Guptill Publications, 2005.
- Meaning in western architecture, by Christian Norberg-Schulz. Rev. ed. New York : Rizzoli, 1980.
- Styles and types of North American architecture : social function and cultural expression, Alan Gowans. New York, N.Y.: Icon Editions, 1992.