The Library is one of Worcester College's finest assets. The modern reading rooms contain 65,000 volumes, while the magnificent Old Library houses collections of European importance.
The collections of Worcester College Library are intended to support students, Fellows and staff of the College in all subjects; please see Information for College Members. Researchers may be interested in the special collections of prints, drawings, manuscripts and early printed books.
A library was established in 1421 in what was then Gloucester College, but unfortunately it did not survive the Reformation. Gloucester Hall succeeded this college in 1560, and several hundred books which once belonged to the Hall remain in the library today. The current library building was begun a few years after the foundation of Worcester College in 1714. It was completed in or shortly after 1736 to house Dr George Clarke's great bequest of books, manuscripts, prints and drawings. Successive generations have added to the collections and in the twentieth century the library was extended to accommodate the modern holdings.