The German Historical Institute library is an academic reference library
serving those undertaking research, teaching, studying or looking for specialized
The library is open to anyone who has an interest in German history,
British-German relations or comparative historiography. There are no formalities
such as letters of reference or written applications. Readers receive a
pass on their first visit, once they have filled in their personal details
and produced a passport photo, plus proof of address.
General rules and conditions for using the library
Please read and comply with the following:
Use of the library is free of charge.
Visitors enter the building via reception where they sign in by name and
Reader's pass number, but leave via the ground floor glass door without
During library hours coats, bags and umbrellas can be left in the cloakroom
and personal belongings in cloakroom lockers. The locker key is to be handed
in at reception if a reader leaves the building for any length of time.
All lockers are emptied each day when the library closes.
Library staff can insist on being shown the contents of files, bags and
Readers should behave in such a way that does not disturb the work of others
in the library. Please do not have loud discussions, play radios, cassettes
or CDs, or use mobile phones.
The use of laptops is allowed.
Smoking is forbidden in all library rooms. Eating and drinking is allowed,
but only in the Common Room.
The GHIL library is on open-access shelving, so readers have unrestricted
access to all books, and also newspapers in the basement rolling stacks.
Books cannot be taken out on loan, they can only be used in the library.
In the event of a reader damaging a book e.g., by scribbling or other means,
then the reader must pay for a new replacement of the book, or in the case
of unavailable books, pay for a bound copy. In such a case the library
retains the right to ban the reader from further use of the library. This
also applies to any reader who attempts to remove a book from the library.
It is not possible to arrange inter-library loans.
Photocopying facilities are available and the necessary cards for this
can be purchased at reception. Please refer to German copyright laws (dated
9.9.1965 and alterations 6.3.79) in respect of copying conditions and restrictions.
A reader printer is available for reading and copying microfiche and films.
Copies are to be shown and paid for at reception.
The GHIL cannot be held liable for any loss or damage of money or valuables
caused by the unauthorised action of a third party.