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Special Collections

Rare Books and Incunabula

In the spirit of the University’s aspiration to “contribute to the welfare of the human being, all human beings, throughout education, research and publication in all fields of knowledge”, the Library has acquired notable collections of rare books and incunabula. These exceptional texts which are difficult to locate and replace, have fundamental research value.

There are several factors that play a major role in deciding what is categorized as a rare book (printed before 1880) or an incunabulum (printed before 1501): provenance, age, scarcity, significance in content, research value, and unique characteristics. Because these materials are fragile and/or have a unique nature, they are not placed for loan and circulation; they can only be consulted in the reading rooms.

It has taken years of consistent researching and collecting, making the Library strong in the areas of humanities, literature, history, art, theology, and philosophy. Our literary Rare Books and Incunabula hold works in Arabic, English, French, German, Italian, Latin, Ancient Greek, Syriac and Garshuni.

Search Rare Books and Incunabula
Please note only part of our collection is currently available online.
We are working to add hard-copy catalogs to the online version.
If you cannot find what you are looking for, Ask a Librarian.

Availability and orders
Available to be read on-site, in one of the Library reading rooms. To order a print or digital copy of material from this collection, please visit the Digital Development Center.

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