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Primary sources and reference materials

Primary sources include works of literature, newspaper archives, images, and films. Reference materials include dictionaries and encyclopedias.

You have access to a wide range of digital sources, and also printed materials in the main collections and our Special Collections.

Digital primary sources


You have access to a wide range of online newspapers. A very handy overview of our newspaper content provides access to individual resources. See the list below for details of selected titles.


These resources are excellent for finding authoritative definitions of words and prhrases, and for researching the lives and contexts of writers and historical figures. 


Via these resources you have access to millions of freeview TV and radio programmes, newsreels and screened performances of threatrical works. 


These resources provide access to images of artworks, architecture, sculpture and related art forms.

Printed primary sources

Search for primary sources among the Library's collections of printed editions of literary works, letters, diaries and facsimiles.

Special Collections

Special Collections image

The University's Special Collections encompass a wide range of material from different time periods and on numerous subjects.

Some material can be viewed online and you can consult physical items by appointment in the Special Collections Reading Room on the first floor of the Arts and Social Sciences Library.