About Special Collections

The Utrecht University Library Special Collections contain many extensive collections of manuscripts, pre-1901 printed works, more recent rare and valuable printed works, and maps and nautical charts.

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The library, which was set up by order of the Utrecht city council in the choir of Saint John's Church in 1584, was open to all the citizens. That made the library one of the first public city libraries in The Netherlands. After the foundation of Utrecht University in 1636 the library became the University Library.


University Library Utrecht also disseminates its cultural heritage in a range of publications. See below for an overview of publications about or otherwise relating to the Special Collections.