About the Library

The Hellenic and Roman Societies, in collaboration with the University of London’s Institute of Classical Studies (ICS), own and operate one of the world’s great libraries for the study of Greco-Roman Antiquity.  This extraordinary collection of materials has been built up over more than a century starting with the foundation of the Hellenic Society (1879) and the Roman Society (1910) who formed the ‘Joint Library’. In 1953, the Societies collaborated with the newly-established ICS to create the ‘Combined Library’.   Run by a staff of specialised librarians, it has over 150,000 books including an important rare book collection, and 22,000 bound volumes of periodicals.  The annual growth rate for books and periodicals combined is approximately 3,000 volumes. The Library subscribes to almost 700 current periodical titles, and it also benefits from an influx of material via the exchange of titles with other libraries and the donation of books acquired for review in the Societies’ prestigious journals, the Journal of Hellenic Studies, the Journal of Roman Studies and Britannia.  Almost the whole collection is available on open access. With a growing corpus of electronic resources and a rapidly developing programme of digitization, collection development and accessibility of resources remains at the heart of the Library’s mission.

All members of the Societies have borrowing rights and both Societies have a wide membership of scholars, students, teachers, authors, and many with a general interest in the Classical world. Scholars, teachers and students may also enjoy reading rights as members of the Institute of Classical Studies.

More information about the Library is available from its website: http://library.icls.sas.ac.uk/