Ordering manuscripts

Who can order manuscripts?

Access to special collections (manuscript and archival material; rare printed books) is granted on the basis of a readerís research need. Readers from outside Oxford University should complete the statement of research need, indicating specific material they wish to consult, when applying for a readerís card. Oxford University undergraduates and taught postgraduates should always make prior application to consult special collections by emailing us.

How to order manuscripts

You canít order manuscripts online! Youíll need to:

1.    Fill in a green slip in a reading room or
2.    Contact reading room staff by phone or email and ask them to order on your behalf prior to a visit

Ordering manuscripts: green slips

You fill in a green slip with the following information:

 Ordering manuscripts

In the Reading Room box enter:

RR1 for the Mackerras reading room
RR2 for the Rare Books and Manuscripts reading room
RR3 for the David reading room

Ordering manuscripts: delivery times and storage

For everything you need to know about the special collections reading rooms, please see the reading room guides.

Please be aware a maximum of 10 manuscripts or books only may be ordered at one time.

Last orders need to be submitted by 3.45pm for same day delivery. Orders placed after this time will arrive by 11am the following day, Monday-Friday.

If your material is in the Weston there is a 2 hour maximum fetch time.

There is limited fetching on Saturdays.

If your material is stored offsite, it will take 24 hours to arrive.

To find out if the material you are interested in is stored offsite, please contact us!

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