Finding Books and Journals

BJL Collections

Collection overview

The Bodleian Japanese Library houses the principal collection of the Oxford University relating to Japan and covers the history and culture of Japan from the dawn of her civilization to the present day, offering one of the best research collections for Japanese Studies in Europe.

The collection comprises manuscripts and antiquarian printed books as well as modern publications covering both general humanities and the social sciences. The fields of literature, history, politics, sociology and social anthropology are particularly represented, while the collection of Japanese local histories is probably the most important such collection outside Japan.  Collection Policy for Japan.

More information is available on Special collections relating to Japan.

Libraries and Reading Rooms

The Bodleian Japanese Library was opened to readers in April 1993 in the newly constructed building of the Nissan Institute of Japanese Studies in the precincts of St. Antony's College.

It is an open-access library, with seating space for forty-two users at any one time. It consists of the Main Reading Room and offices on the ground floor, the Bookstack, and the Rare Book Room in the basement.

The main collection is either in the open-access Bookstack in the basement, or stored in the remote book storage facility in Swindon (request via SOLO, please see Materials offsite below). The reference works are arranged by subject in the Main Reading Room. The Japanese video collection of over 170 DVDs, including Japanese films and television programmes are also available.

The Bodleian Japanese Library houses the main research and teaching collection for Japanese studies. Materials on the natural and applied sciences and law (except constitutional law) about Japan are held at the Radcliffe Science Library and the Bodleian Law Library respectively.
Works in Japanese relating to the study of China or Korea are in the remote book storage facility (request via SOLO).
Japanese art and archaeology materials are housed in the Eastern Art collection at the Sackler Library.

Finding Books and Journals

Western language books and journals - listed on SOLO, the University’s online library catalogue.

Japanese language books and journals - listed on SOLO catalogue (both in original Japanese scripts and in Roma-ji, transliterated forms).  How to search Japanese books in SOLO.

            SOLO/allegro location code: BJL
For general guides to SOLO (Searching, Signing On, Holds, Requests and reservations, Renewals, Your accout, e-shelf, Journal articles), see Userguides for SOLO

Materials offsite

Some of our collections are stored offsite in the remote book storage facility in Swindon.  For the materials offsite, (indicated by the status "Closed Stack" in SOLO record), please request via SOLO.

How to: Request books/journals from Closed Stack on SOLO 

Please e-mail us at or call us 01865-(2)84506 beforehand, if you have queries or need assistance.

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