Our library has outstanding research collections to support the study of the 18th century. We have numerous contemporary printed sources, with particular strengths in history, politics, economics, English literature, science and medicine. Many of these early materials are housed in our library's Special Collections and are supplemented by extensive microfilm and online sources.
Eighteenth Century Collections Online (for material published in England or in English from 1701-1800) and Making of the Modern World (for material published between 1450 and 1850) are key online sources for books, and some journal material, augmenting our extensive print collections. The Making of the Modern World comprises the Goldsmith-Kress Library of Economic Literature 1450-1850, which combines important specialist collections from Harvard University and the Goldsmiths' Library, London.
For printed ephemera, such as posters, handbills and broadsides you can access online The John Johnson Collection (which originates from the Bodleian Library, Oxford). We also have strong collections of newspapers and journals covering the 18th century. In addition to our collections of regional papers in print and on microfilm we give online access to wide-ranging local and national sources. These include:
- Times Digital Archive (in full text from 1785)
- Eighteenth Century Journals Online (covering rare journals printed between 1685 and 1815 from the Hope collection at the Bodleian Library, and also 17th and 18th century newspapers from the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center)
- 17th and 18th Century Burney Collection Newspapers (with access to the free press and pamphlet material)
- British Periodicals Online, which covers key journals from the 18th century.
- English Literary Periodicals and Women Advising Women, both on microfilm give additional access to titles from the 18th century, whilst the London Gazette is also available in print and online.
Eighteenth century House of Commons parliamentary papers are available in full text through the online database: House of Commons Parliamentary Papers. We also have in print many of the 18th century command papers, as well as the full series of the calendar of state papers and related series, Home Office correspondence, 1782-1820, the Lords and Commons journals, and Voting Records of the British House of Commons. You can also access, on microfilm, Divisions in the House of Lords: an analytical list.
Our library gives you access to a wealth of archival and manuscript material from the 18th century, primarily through its Special Collections, including an extensive collection of papers relating to the Chevalier D'Eon. You will also find collections relating to Yorkshire families, estates and businesses, as well as to the Quaker movement. We have a rich collection of manuscript commonplace books and miscellanies, and travel and cookery writing. Within our large microfilm collection are resources such as English cartoons and satirical prints in the British Museum as well sets of personal correspondence and papers relating to this period. Documents relating to the British Empire, and to the United States, are available online through Empire Online and Women and Social Movements in the United States, 1600-2000, as well as through microfilm sets such as Proceedings and debates of the British parliaments respecting North America, 1542-1776.