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Russian and Eastern European material

Do you or anyone in your organisation ever need access to material from any of the following countries?

Russia; former Soviet Republics such as Latvia, Lithuania, etc.; Bulgaria; Poland; Czech Republic; Slovakia; Bosnia; Serbia; Croatia; Slovenia; Macedonia.

Then we should be your first choice for document supply or interlibrary loans. Although material added to our collection since 1989 is recorded in our online catalogues, a considerable part of our Slavonic and East European monograph collection is only recorded in our card catalogues.

"We are always amazed that you find the most obscure titles with the minimum of information” - Smithkline Beecham Pharmaceuticals

Our collection comprises:

Cyrillic books and serials

  • Possibly the largest collection of Cyrillic scientific monographs outside Russia itself - over 220,000 titles - dating from the late 1950s to the present. Records for publications from 1989 onwards are available on Explore the British Library.
  • Around 10,000 Arts and Humanities monographs.
  • Cyrillic serials covering both the Humanities and Sciences, of which about 2,000 titles are on current subscription. Many of those with English language contents pages are included on British Library Inside.
  • Conference proceedings.
  • Report literature from research establishments in the former Soviet Union.
  • Archives of the Communist Party and Soviet State available on microfiche.

Non-Cyrillic Eastern European language material (but not Albanian, Hungarian or Romanian)

  • Books and serials covering both Humanities and Sciences. Details of our books, conference and serial holdings are available on Explore the British Library; current serial holdings - some 1,600 titles - can be be found in Current Serials Received. Pre-1980 monographic material is not listed in our online catalogues.


  • Full English language cover-to-cover translations of many of our Russian scientific serials
  • Access to thousands of translations of individual articles, available via our Translations Section.

"The British Library's Document Supply collections of Cyrillic serials has proved invaluable to a group of visiting Russian researchers - I don’t know what we would have done without it” - 
University of Central Lancashire