Royal Librarian (United Kingdom)

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The office of Royal Librarian, in the Royal Collection Department of the Royal Household of the Sovereign of the United Kingdom, is responsible for the care and maintenance of the royal collection of books and manuscripts owned by the Sovereign in an official capacity, as distinct from those owned privately and displayed at Sandringham House and Balmoral Castle and elsewhere.[citation needed]


Although a Librarian was always required for any sizeable royal collection of books, the present office dates from 1836, when the then existing collections of books at Windsor Castle were consolidated. The office was only admitted to the Royal Household late in the 19th century. John Glover, appointed in 1836, held office until 1860. Two Librarians dominated much of the twentieth century. They were Sir Owen Morshead GCVO (1926–1958) and Sir Robin Mackworth-Young[1] GCVO (1958–1985). [2]

The Librarian now has oversight of the Royal Library, Windsor,[3] and the Print Room. The latter contains the royal collections of drawings and engravings. The Librarian organises exhibitions and loans, recommends purchases, and advises on publications on the royal library, print room and on the history of Windsor Castle.

Oliver Everett CVO was Librarian, Royal Library, 1985–2002 (he was deputy librarian 1984–1985). During his tenure, a significant collection of contemporary Canadian Watercolours (Royal Collection Project - CSPWC) entered the Windsor Castle holdings.[4] He is now Librarian Emeritus, Windsor Castle.[citation needed]

The current Librarian is The Honourable Dame Jane, Lady Roberts,[5] DCVO (Curator of the Print Room), appointed 2002. Previously since 1975 she had been only curator of the print room. Before the appointment of Lady Roberts the recent Librarians were not professional librarians, and relied upon the support of the Curator of the Print Room, and the Bibliographer of the Royal Library, for professional advice with respect to their respective collections.


  1. ^ "The History and Treasures of Windsor Castle" by Sir Robin Mackworth-Young, London, 1982. ISBN 0-85372-338-9
  2. ^ "Sir Robin Mackworth-Young". Daily Telegraph. 
  3. ^ Treasures from the Royal Library, Windsor Castle, Royal Collection, UK.
  4. ^ THE ROYAL COLLECTION TRUST'S ANNUAL REPORT 2001-2002. Acquisitions, page 25 records the "gift of fifteen watercolours by the CSPWC/SCPA on the occasion of the Society's seventy-fifth anniversary".
  5. ^ ROYAL TREASURES, A Golden Jubilee Celebration" edited by Jane, The Lady Roberts, Published by Royal Collection Enterprises Ltd, St James' Palace, London, 2002. ISBN 1-902163-49-4

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Coordinates: 51°29′03″N 0°36′06″W / 51.4841°N 0.6018°W / 51.4841; -0.6018