Collections and resources at the History of Medicine Library


The library holds around 7,500 monographs, serials and theses on diverse topics. You can search these collections on SOLO.  

The library’s collections are particularly strong in:

  • national and local public health administration within the UK
  • hospitals and hospital movements (especially within the UK)
  • infectious diseases (including malaria and anti-malarials)
  • tropical medicine
  • pharmacology
  • biography (medical and non-medical)

We purchase new resources to maintain diversity and to reflect the research interests of members, currently tropical, colonial (particularly Indian), military and naval medicine, and the history of nursing.

The library holds reports and other grey literature that is not indexed on SOLO. We are currently updating the handlist of this material. Contact us for more information about these collections.

View the collection development policy for History of Medicine (PDF).

New books

Our newly purchased books are also displayed on the New Books shelf in Library Room 1 before moving to the shelves, and on LibraryThing (subscribe via RSS). You can also find out about recent acquisitions by the History Faculty Library.  

Recommend a resource

Use the online form to recommend a book or other library material for purchase. If you would like to discuss the purchase of a new e-resource for history, please first contact the Bodleian History Librarian, Isabel Holowaty (


In general donations are welcome, although we may dispose of donated books if they are no longer required. If you consider your donation of books to be appropriate for the History of Medicine Library collection, please contact us.


History of Science, Medicine and Technology collections

A guide to the different collections and online resources for History of Medicine, including e-books, e-journals and databases.

History collections

An overview of guides to History collections in Oxford.

History of Science, Medicine and Technology on Canvas

Annotated reading lists and digitized material for MSc/MPhil HSMT students via Canvas (Single Sign On required).  

Finding aids for special collections

A hub for the Bodleian Library's special collections subject guides.

Useful links