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Rare Books & Special Collections

Supporting teaching and research at the University and beyond

How to view items

Request to view items in the reading room

You can view items from Rare Books and Special Collections in the reading room at Fisher Library. Make a request to view an item via Library Search, under "more options".

Requests need to be made at least two business days before you wish to visit. You will be notified by email once your selected items are available to view in the reading room, and they will be kept on hold for you for the next 7 days. Please do not come in until you have received your notification email.
If you do not view your requested item within the 7-day period, the hold will automatically expire, and you will need to place a new request.

View items online in the Virtual reading room

Use our Virtual reading room service to view items from Rare Books and Special Collections remotely, via Zoom.
Find out more and make a booking

External clients

If you do not hold a University of Sydney card or current Library membership, please register for a free Rare Books and Special Collections Community ID. Details on how to log in to Library Search with your new RBSC Community ID are available here.
Please read the Reading Room Terms of Use before submitting a hold request.

Request digital copies of materials

For digital copies of Rare Books & Special Collections material, please email

About our collections
  • Rare Books & Special Collections includes early printed books from Europe, Australia, America, and Asia. We also collect high-quality facsimiles, examples of fine printing and binding and modern limited editions. Included in our holdings are pre-2013 University of Sydney higher degree theses and University of Sydney publications. There are more than 170,000 items in our collections.

Request materials, make an appointment, or register for a class
Reproduction, display and publication of images
  • If you wish to reproduce any images of Rare Books & Special Collections material in publications or on the internet please contact Rare Books & Special Collections for permission. A reproduction fee may be charged.
    In all circumstances, any reproductions must be credited to "Rare Books and Special Collections, the University of Sydney Library".

Rare Books & Special Collections
Level 1, Fisher Library
Eastern Avenue (F03)
Camperdown Campus
University of Sydney NSW 2006
Mon - Fri   11am - 3pm
Advance collection hold requests required
+61 2 9351 2992
Contact the Library
Live Chat, call or send us a question

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The University of Sydney Library acknowledges that its facilities sit on the ancestral lands of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, who have for thousands of generations exchanged knowledge for the benefit of all. Learn more