Information Services


Edinburgh University Library collections for English literature.

Main collections

Books in the current lending collections that are classified in the Library of Congress scheme are located on the 2nd floor (shelfmark A to PB) and the 3rd floor (shelfmark PC to Z). Books relating to English Literature are mostly classified under PR (e.g. PR5484 Ste.). Older lending collections that are classified in the Dewey decimal scheme (e.g. .82389 Ste.) are located on the 4th floor.

Journals are located on the 4th floor. Back runs of some journals are stored in the Library Annexe from where scanned articles can be requested online.

Reference works such as dictionaries, encyclopaedias and bibliographies are classified in the LC scheme and interfiled with the general LC lending stock on the 2nd and 3rd floors. The Research Support Collection on the 6th floor also contains major reference works. (See Centre for Research Collections below).

Manuscripts are held in Special Collections

Printed exam papers Bound volumes of printed exam papers up to 2004/5 are stored in the Library Annexe and can be retrieved upon request. For further information, see Request Material Stored in the Library Annexe. Exam papers from 2004 onwards are available online.

HUB Collection

The High Use Books (HUB) collection, located on the ground floor of the Main Library, consists of HUB Reserve (3 hour loan) and HUB Short Loan (7 day loan) books as well as offprints and videos.

Undergraduate course books on Reserve for English Literature are located in this collection.

Centre for Research Collections

The Centre for Research Collections (CRC) contains the University Library’s Special Collections which include historical books, manuscripts, archives and microfilms that English Literature researchers and students may find useful. The main CRC facilities are on the 6th floor of the Main Library. There is also a Research Support Collection there for reference use only.

Some named collections in the CRC are:

Corson Walter Scott Archive

The Corson Collection of Walter Scot material contains over 6,000 printed items comprising editions of Scott in English and translation, biographical and critical material as well as some original manuscript material. All the printed items in this collection are listed in the online catalogue. To browse this collection, do the shelfmark search for Corson. This collection has now also been digitised and is accessible via Walter Scot Digital Archive.

Lewis Grassic Gibbon Collection

The Lewis Grassic Gibbon Collection of the Scottish writer (1901-1935) contains about 300 volumes, mainly of English and Scottish literature, a few with presentation or ownership inscriptions. The collection reflects the author’s literary interest. All the items are listed in the online Catalogue, with the shelfmark sequence SC 3469-3681, SC 8901-9000, JA 3843-46, JA 3868-99.

C.M. Grieve (Hugh MacDiarmid) Collection

The library of the Scottish poet and nationalist C. M. Grieve, better known under his pseudonym Hugh MacDiarmid (1892-1978), consists of some 1,700 books and 50 boxes of verse pamphlets and periodical issues. Though the collection is mainly literary, it also reflects MacDiarmid's interest in Scottish and international (especially communist) politics. The collection is only partially catalogued online. There are shelf slips and an author list of the catalogued part of the collection (JA 3952-4000, JA 5000-6217) available in the Centre for Research Collections, where a brief listing of the otherwise uncatalogued verse pamphlets and periodical issues is also kept.