Oxford University - Old library (Duke Humfrey’s). Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

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Old library (Duke Humfrey’s)

Humphrey of Lancaster, 1st Duke of Gloucester, founded the Duke Humfrey’s Library in 1447 after donating 281 books to the library after his death. It is the oldest reading room at the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford.

During the 16th and 17th centuries, sections of the libraries were restored and expanded, adding a second floor, east wing, and west wing. The library currently serves as a reading room for the Bodleian Library.

Where is the Old Library (Duke Humfrey’s)?

The library is located on Broad Street, Oxford OX1 3BG. 

Website: https://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/bodley

Can you Visit the Old Library?

While many areas of the Bodleian Library are only accessible to students and people with a valid library card, Duke Humfrey’s Library is accessible as part of a guided tour.

  • Guided tours £9 for a 30-minute tour, £12 for a 60-minute tour, £18 for a 90-minute tour.
  • Self-guided audio tour: £4.50

  • Admission to Divinity School: £2.50.

  • Admission to Blackwell Hall: Free.

  • Admission to the Old Schools Quadrangle: Free.

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