Friday, July 15, 2011

Christ Church College Library

Christ Church College is a college of the University of Oxford. The library was established in the current building in 1772. Users of the library are often outside researchers. Music is the strong aspect of the collection. It contains 100,000 titles from the establishment of the printing press until the 1800s. One of the interesting things about the library is that the collection is arranged by individual’s collections. One of the largest is by William Wake who was associated with Oxford and later became the Arch Bishop of Canterbury. The books line one complete large wall with the manuscripts in a separate location. Also in the books are annotations written by Wake along with correspondence with various authors. Other collections contain artifacts that were associated with the individual collection. The physical materials are can only be used on an appointment basis. Other materials can be accessed online through the online catalog and some items are digitized.

The library also has a strong special collections area with about 700 manuscripts. Most manuscripts are Roman script manuscripts but the library does have other types of manuscripts. The collection has a variety of old manuscripts with one being dated 1163. Other manuscripts are for Royalty with one being entitled “How to be a King” written for Edward III. An interesting piece of information we received was that Lewis Carrol, the author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, was a sub librarian at the library.

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