Special Reading Room

The historic Münstergasse Library is home to important rare books and prints before 1900. They are cared for by the Historical Collections Center  ZHB which is financed by the Burgergemeinde Bern, the civic community of Bern. We are happy to answer questions concerning the collections, research, access, digitizing, copying and borrowing requests.

Rare books and prints before 1900 can be viewed in the Special Reading Room at Münstergasse Library:

Opening times

Open Tue – Fri, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
The special reading room is closed on public holidays and during the last week of the year. The special reading room closes at 4 p.m. on the eve of Good Friday, Ascension Day and 1 August.

Search and order

  • Please use swisscovery for your library transactions.
  • swisscovery may at times display titles only, not specific copies. Please specify the copy of the work you order by indicating its shelfmark in the additional field.
  • When ordering books to be read on the premises, select «BMü, Lesesaal» for our Special Reading Room.
  • Your orders will be at your disposal for a month's time. Please ignore the automatic message saying that the order has to be claimed within seven days. For research questions feel free to contact us by mail (zhb.ub@unibe.ch).
  • An ID, passport, or drivers license is reqired if you use the special reading room for the first time or haven't used it for two years.
  • Customers form abroad may register as well, but the number of orders ist limited to 5 documents. Should your order exceed 5 documents to be consulted in the Special Reading Room write to zhb.ub@unibe.ch well ahead of time.
  • In case of any questions concerning rare books please contact the reading room staff or write to zhb.ub@unibe.ch .