Library and archives

Christ Church Library is an important resource and research centre, primarily intended to provide undergraduate readers with the books they need for their studies. There is also a separate Law Library with a valuable and increasing collection of legal works. The Library also contains what is probably the largest and richest collection of early printed books and manuscripts in Oxford after the Bodleian Library. Its holdings are of international importance and are particularly rich in music, theology, Classics, travel books, numismatics, early science, medicine and Hebrew studies.

Over all, there are well over 80,000 early printed books and 7,000 manuscripts in this extraordinary library. An impressive number of these are rare or unique texts, several are masterpieces of book design, and  many have illustrious provenance (King Edward III, Thomas Wolsey, King Henry VIII, Robert Burton, John Dee, Michel de Montaigne and Queen Elizabeth I).

Today the Library is a very busy place. Members of the college and researchers use the large modern collection downstairs and examine rare books and manuscripts. The Library's imaging studio is engaged in a comprehensive digitization project and deals with constant photographic requests. Recent research is published in Christ Church Library Newsletter, an academic journal largely documenting and interpreting aspects of the collections. The Library offers numerous exhibitions, talks and workshops. Visitors are always welcome.

Opening Times

11th and -2nd week (29 March – 10 April): 8am – 8pm

-1st week onwards (from 11th April): 8am – midnight

The library will be closed to ALL readers (internal and external) from 15 August to 11 September 2016.

Research News

Library and archives
Thursday, May 19, 2016 - 15:09
Richard Hakluyt’s The Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques, and Discoveries of the English...
Library and archives
Wednesday, May 4, 2016 - 15:42
Among the less known Special Collections material at Christ Church are the recently declassified...
Library and archives
Wednesday, April 13, 2016 - 12:54
Among the many treasures of Christ Church Library is a very little known, but extraordinarily...


Friday, June 3, 2016
Digital Restoration of Scores
Monday, June 13, 2016
Creating a Collaborative Reconstruction of John Sandler's Partbooks