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Library Services




A subject guide for the Department of Philosophy

Special Collections

UCL Special Collections is one of the foremost university collections of manuscripts, archives and rare books in the UK. It includes fine collections of medieval manuscripts and early printed books, as well as significant holdings of 18th century works, and highly important 19th and 20th century collections of personal papers, archival material, and literature.

You can find further information below about the collections most relevant for Philosophy.

Special Collections for Philosophy

The Bentham Book Collection contains first editions of the published writings of the English philosopher and social theorist Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) as well as books and articles about his work. It also includes presentation copies of Bentham’s works inscribed by the author and a small number of items from Bentham’s own library.

The Bentham Manuscripts are a vast collection of manuscripts written by Jeremy Bentham. The originals are stored in UCL Archives and many are available online. 

A collection of 180 works printed before 1501. Further information from the Special Collections Incunabula page.

Visiting Special Collections

UCL Special Collections is reference only. In order to use the collections, you need to book an appointment: at least two weeks prior to the date of your proposed visit. Please do not make any travel or accommodation arrangements until we have confirmed your appointment. We are not able to accommodate drop-in visits. See the Visiting Us Special Collection page for more information.