Harleian Collection

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The Harleian or Harley Collection (Latin: Bibliotheca Harleiana) is one of main collections of the British Library in London, England.

The manuscript collection of more than 7,000 volumes; more than 14,000 original legal documents; and more than 500 rolls.[clarification needed] It was formed by Robert Harley (1661–1724) and his son Edward (1689-1741). In 1753, it was purchased for £10,000 by the British government and—together with the collections of R.B. Cotton and Hans Sloane—formed the basis of the British Museum's library, which became the British Library in 1973.[1]

The collection contains illuminated manuscripts spanning the early Middle Ages to the Renaissance. The manuscripts came from France, Germany, and Italy.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ British Library. "History of the Harley Library".

Further reading[edit]

  • British Library Journal vol. 15 (1989) is devoted to Robert Harley and his collections.
  • C. E. and C. R. Wright, eds. The Diary of Humfrey Wanley 1715–1726, 2 vols (London, 1966).

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°31′48″N 0°07′41″W / 51.530°N 0.128°W / 51.530; -0.128