About the National Library of Scotland’s collections

More than 24 million items make up the National Library of Scotland’s collections – and we are not just about books. For instance, we also look after:

  • Seven million manuscripts
  • 700 years of maps
  • 400,000 music items
  • Over 32,000 films.

Every week we take in 5,000 new items, so if you are inspired to learn about Scotland and the Scots we are sure to have something for you.

Digitised from the collections

Each year we digitise more and more from the collections, providing free access for everyone via the web.

For photos, letters, books, maps, films and more, visit the Digital gallery.

Schools can also use resources in the Learning zone that we have created to tie-in with the Scottish curriculum.

Licensed digital collections

Hundreds of thousands of online research resources are available free when you become a registered reader.

Our eResources (formerly called licensed digital collections) include books, newspapers, ejournals and databases which you can use in the reading rooms once you have a library card.

If your main address is in Scotland, you can register to use some of this electronic material without visiting the Library in person.

Read more about registration and using the Library.