From Magna Carta and Shakespeare to Ada Lovelace and The Beatles. Explore some of the world’s most exciting, beautiful and significant books, manuscripts and sound recordings.
Telling the remarkable stories of over 2,000 years of human experience, our Treasures of the British Library Gallery gives you a peek into the wonders of our vast collection:
- Enter the minds of literature’s greatest writers: view the desk where Jane Austen penned her novels, original writings from Charles Dickens and Shakespeare’s First Folio.
- See the Lindisfarne Gospels and the oldest surviving examples of printed text in Japan.
- Get a whistle-stop tour around the world with religious texts from across the globe, including one of the earliest Qur’ans and a Hindu manuscript written on a palm leaf.
- Explore science and innovation through the ages from Michelangelo’s anatomical illustrations to Anne McLaren’s early experiments into in vitro fertilisation (IVF).
- Meet Gandhi, the Suffragettes and other courageous figures who have inspired change.
Get a taste of what’s inside the Gallery in our accompanying Treasures website.
We also have temporary displays throughout the year. The D’Oyly Carte Opera Company: Staging Gilbert and Sullivan is open from 3 September until 8 December 2019.
Notes about the gallery space
You may find the Sir John Ritblat Gallery cooler and darker than other areas of the Library. This controlled environment protects any items that may fade, discolour, or be damaged in bright light or humid conditions. We recommend bringing an extra layer for your comfort.
Items are taken off display on a regular basis for conservation reasons and may also be lent to other institutions for exhibition. If you wish to be sure that a particular item is on display, please check in advance. Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7332