Describes collections which are associated with a particular person (e.g. a previous owner). Most are not identified as 'part of a collection' in Explore the British Library.
This list is intended principally to give brief details of special collections that may be mentioned in secondary material. It can also be used in some cases to identify a significant body of material on a particular subject, or to ascertain the provenance of certain items. It is restricted to collections which are associated with a particular person (usually the collector or a previous owner) and which have been shelved together as a collection within the Library. The majority of these are not identified as such in Explore the British Library, although in many cases individual items within the collections are catalogued. Very occasionally, collections which do not quite meet these criteria have been included as being particularly interesting or useful (e.g. the Tieck collection of Spanish dramas and the Risorgimento collection). Material in the Map Library, Music Library (with the exception of the Hirsch collection), the Asia, Pacific and Africa Collections, and British Library Newspapers is not included in this list. A separate listing describes Named Manuscripts Collections and Archives.
Similar collections of printed material which are not associated with a named individual or institution can be found by consulting one of the Printed Catalogues of the British (Museum) Library under the heading COLLECTION. See also the guide to Provenance Research in the British Library.
A small number of collections are described as having restricted access. In these cases, please contact staff at the Reference Enquiry Desk in the Rare Books and Music Reading Room, or email the Early Printed Collections department to discuss your research needs.
Early Printed Collections
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7564
Fax: +44 (0)20 7412 7691