Dublin City Public Libraries: Dublin and Irish Collections

Dublin City Library and Archive at Pearse Street houses the Dublin and Irish Collections (Special Collections and Early Printed Books) of Dublin City Public Libraries and Dublin City Archives. The Special Collections are made up of approximately twelve major collections. The best known of these are the Gilbert Library, the Dix Collection, the Yeats Collection and the Swift Collection. The emphasis of the collections is on all aspects of Dublin: art, architecture, history, archaeology, biography, literature, music, education, sport, theatre, etc. The library also has an excellent general collection of Irish history, literature, biography, and family history. History of the Irish book, in print and in manuscript, is another important strand of the collection, therefore Irish printings and bookbindings, and books and periodicals about the topic, are important elements.


The collection is strong on materials relating to Dublin, in particular books and periodicals printed in the 17th and 18th centuries. Music materials form a small, but significant, segment of the holdings. The Dublin and Irish Collections hold the older printed works. John Gilbert and E. R. McClintock Dix were both collectors of early printed music and ballad sheets, and the modern research collection reflects this interest also.

Physical characteristics

The early printed collections comprise nearly 10,000 items within the research collection of approximately 200,000 items.

Description or Catalogue

Details of the Early Printed Book Collection can be found on the Dublin City Public Libraries online catalogue: http://www.dublincitypubliclibraries.ie


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Added by Dublin City Public Libraries | Last updated on: 08 February 2018