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Do you need documents in languages unfamiliar to you? If so, we may be able to help you.

Our collections include:

  • More than half a million journal articles translated into English from a wide variety of languages, particularly Japanese, Russian, German and French, ranging in date from the 1800s to the present day.
  • Cover-to-cover translations of selected Russian scientific serials, many available through British Library Inside.
  • Patents, standards, conference papers and books translated into English.

When you request an item from us, at no extra cost we can:

  • Check for an existing English version of the document you require, saving you the time, money and trouble of getting it translated
  • Tell you if an English abstract appears with the original language article and offer you this as an alternative
  • If required, check for a translation and if none exists, supply the document in its original language instead

Remember, you are not charged for any requests we cannot satisfy.

The Translations section does not:

  • Carry out any translation work itself
  • Collect or index translations from English into other languages.

Points to remember when requesting translations

  • If you require an English translation, make this clear when you make a request
    • Registered customers - consult your Handbook for details
    • Non-registered customers customers - state clearly your requirements on your request.
  • Please do not ask for translations of items obviously in English e.g. British Medical Journal, because this causes unnecessary delay in processing your request.
  • A journal title or article title quoted in English does not necessarily mean the document you get will be in English - this is especially the case with Japanese journals.

Since the majority of our translation records are not available online, you should send your requests to us whenever you require an English translation.