Reader Information

All books and manuscripts in the library are listed on our online catalogue.

We are a public library, and everyone who has a valid reason is welcome to carry out research on items in our collection.

The Reading Room is open from 9.30 am to 1.00 pm and from 2.00 pm to 5.00 pm on weekdays, and closed at weekends.

The historic 1st-floor library galleries are not wheelchair accessible. However, there is a ramp to our ground floor reading room. If you have any mobility difficulties, please let us know in advance.

The library reserves the right not to issue physical books and manuscripts to readers if digital surrogates are available, or if the item requested is in a fragile physical condition.

The number of spaces in the Reading Room is limited. Please contact the manager of the Reading Room by email for an appointment at least three days in advance of your proposed visit: We are happy to answer queries submitted to the same address.

Admission to conduct research in the Reading Room is free of charge. Please note that as a tourist attraction, the library charges an entry fee to those visiting the historic galleries on the first floor. This charge for non-academic visits helps us to keep the historic building open, undertake repairs, and preserve the books and manuscripts.

Access to collections

Some of our 19th and 20th-century material is currently in restricted storage. We regret that we will require additional notice to issue this material and apologise for any inconvenience. You will be advised of this should you include any of this material in a research request.

Material from the Benjamin Iveagh Library is housed in Farmleigh House in the Phoenix Park. These items are identified as ‘Benjamin Iveagh’ within the facets on the right-hand side of the online catalogue. The Benjamin Iveagh Library is sometimes closed at short notice when Farmleigh House is in use for official state business. Please contact for further details.

Use of the reading room

When contacting the Library for an appointment, readers are requested to outline their research purpose and indicate what material they wish to see, having consulted our catalogue in advance. We are happy to advise and guide readers in the use of the collections.

Readers will be asked for photographic identification and must read and sign our Regulations-for-consulting-manuscripts-and-rare-books.

The librarian supervising the reading room will assist with the support and handling of material being consulted. Readers will be requested to wash their hands before consulting the books.

Lockers are provided for bags. Readers may bring only pencils and notebooks, laptops and cameras/phones into the reading room.

Digital photography for personal study purposes is permitted and readers will be asked to sign a form acknowledging the regulations for the use of such images.

No food or drink is permitted in the reading room. Readers will have access to the staff kitchen if they wish.

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