Antiquarian & MSS Collections

Woodcutter from manuscript

New College Library holds c. 30,000 pre-1850 volumes, including c. 340 incunabula (fifteenth-century European imprints) and c. 560 STC books (British Isles imprints and English books printed abroad up to 1640), and the cataloguing of these onto SOLO is now complete.  The catalogue entries on SOLO for our antiquarian material also have copy-specific notes (i.e. information about provenance, binding, imperfections, and other details) and these are continually updated as more information comes to light.  The Library’s printed books purchased or given since the early days of printing have survived in large numbers, particularly in law, theology, the classics, early medicine, and science.

There are also c. 400 medieval manuscripts, most of which are listed in: H.O. Coxe, Catalogus codicum MSS. qui in collegiis aulisque Oxoniensibus hodie adservantur (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1852).  In addition a new catalogue of our manuscripts is currently being compiled, and sample entries are available to be viewed from this work in progress.  It should be noted that manuscripts cannot be listed on SOLO.

All enquiries about pre-1850 books and manuscripts should be made to the Librarian and access to these volumes is by appointment only.  As none of this material is stored in the main library, unfortunately "same-day" service is not possible.