Main Library

This is the National Library of Ireland’s main public building where you will find the Main Reading Room, microfilm reading room facilities, and our Genealogy Service.

The Library’s main exhibition area, seminar room and café are also located in the main building.

Main Reading Room

The Main Reading Room is located on the first floor and is the first area that you should visit if you intend using the Library’s printed or microfilm collections. You can apply for your reader’s ticket here, and the staff on duty will assist you in searching for information.

Services and facilities provided in the Main Reading Room include:

  • Seating for 75 readers, all with facilities for laptop use
  • Reference assistance
  • Online access to the Library’s catalogues and databases, and to online resources
  • Access to manual catalogues
  • A collection of open access reference works
  • Self-service photocopiers and microfilm reader-printers
  • Copying Services

There are two Microfilm Reading Rooms in the Main Library building. One is located adjacent to the Main Reading Room and provides microfilm reading facilities for 20 readers. The second room, the Genealogy Microfilm Reading Room is located on the first landing off the main staircase, opposite the Genealogy Service Room. This room has 20 microfilm readers, and four microfilm reader printers. The Genealogy Service Room has ten computer terminals providing access to online services, and a number of subscription only websites.

Note: in cases where a surrogate copy of an item in the collection exists the original items will not be issued. There are also situations where original material will not be issued even if there are no surrogates, for example in the case of items which are particularly fragile or vulnerable (and are therefore withdrawn for conservation purposes).

The Main Reading Room is a working area for researchers, therefore general access for non users is limited. A short guided visit of the Reading Room takes place at 2.30pm each Saturday and no booking is required.

Main Building, front gate
Main Building, front gate
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