1. Who can use the Ossolineum’s collections?

The collections of 19th to 20th century books and periodicals and the microform collections are open to all persons over 18 years of age who have joined the library and have received a library card.

The special collections (manuscripts, old books, prints, cartography, numismatics) can only be used by persons who can document such a need (e.g. through a letter of recommendation from their supervisor, identification as an academic worker, permission from the Ossolineum’s director, or who are retired academic staff). The decision to grant the right to use the special collections is taken by the head of the appropriate department or room.

2. What documents should you have in order to become a member of the library?

Anyone who wants to use the Ossolineum’s collections must present:

  • an ID card
  • an ID card + a student’s card (in the case of students).

3. Where should you go to join the library?

a) After entering the building (from Grodzka Street) you should go to the Readers’ Registration Centre. The on-duty librarians there register new members and issue them library cards. You should have the card with you each time you go to the Ossolineum library. The card costs 10 zlotys.

b) After obtaining the card you should go the cloakroom and deposit your overcoat as well as bags, packs, etc. there. Remember to take your library card, ID card, and something to write with to the Main Reading Room with you.

Please note: The use of the cloakroom at the Ossolineum is obligatory and free of charge.

c) Then you can go to the Main Catalogue Room and the Main Reading Room (2nd floor).

4. What does the library card authorise you to?

A valid library card authorises you to:

a) enter the Ossolineum without having to be issued a pass; it is enough to show the guards a current library card and a document with a photograph. However, if you go to the special departments, you will get a pass and a badge with the inscription GOŚĆ (GUEST)

b) order books to the Main Reading Room and periodicals to the Serials Reading Room, use the Microforms Reading Room and reference libraries of the special departments.

The library card should be prolonged once a year. The prolongation is free of charge.

5. Are all the Ossolineum’s departments located in one building?

The Ossolineum has three buildings:

a) the building at 37 Szewska Street houses the Main Reading Room, the Main Catalogue Room, The Microforms Reading Room, and the reading rooms of the special departments (Manuscripts, Old Books, Cartography).

b) the building at 24 Sołtysowicka Street (in the vicinity of Koszarowa Street and the Faculty of Social Sciences of the Wrocław University) houses the Serials Department and the Documents of Social Life Department. The rules of access to the collections in the building on Sołtysowicka Street are the same as those in the building at 37 Szewska Street

c) Pan Tadeusz Museum, Under the Golden Sun Tenement, Rynek 6, 50-126 Wrocław

6. How do you order books and periodicals to the reading rooms?

Information regarding Ossolineum books and periodicals collection can be found in on-line catalogues:

Orders can be sent via electronic order form from the terminals in the Main Catalogue Room on Szewska Street and the Serials Catalogue on Sołtysowicka Street, or from any computer connected to the Internet. Order forms are available at webpage:

Składanie zamównień (Making orders)

Orders can also be made on traditional paper call slips available in the Main Catalogue Room as well as in the Serials Reading Room and the Serials Catalogue Room.

The library card number should always be placed on the call slip, both electronic and paper. Slips without the library card number will not be processed. You should also remember that orders for the current day are realised until 3 p.m. only. Orders made later will be processed the next day.

7. Who can you ask for help and information?

The employee of the Information Department on duty in the Main Catalogue Room and the on-duty librarian in the Main Reading Room will help you in solving problems concerning the way in which the Ossolineum’s collections should be used and will provide you with all the necessary information about the Ossolineum’s holdings.

You may also use: Ask a librarian form

8. Is it true that the Ossolineum has a lending service?

The Ossolineum lends its collections only to authorised persons, i.e. faculty members and retired faculty members of the academic institutions of Wrocław.

9. Can you make copies of the ordered materials?

There is a Xerox copier in the Main Reading Room with which you may copy selected materials. Copies can only be made if the condition of the work allows it. This decision is taken by the on-duty librarian. No copies of entire works are made in the Reading Room – such service (copyright allowing) can only be realised in the Copy and Photo Wor­kroom after placing a proper order and obtaining the approval of the Ossolineum’s management.

Besides black-and-white and colour Xerox copies, you can also order microfilms (negative, positive, or diazo), black-and-white photocopies, Xerox copies from microfilms, and scans of selected materials in the Reprographic Workshop. Moreover, you can also copy microfilms and materials recorded earlier in digital form onto CD-ROMs.