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Libraries


In Merton, we enjoy some of the best college-based library facilities in Oxford. Alongside your faculty library, and the central libraries of the Bodleian, you will have access to Merton’s two college libraries, affectionately known as ‘MOB’ (for its location in Mob Quad – a part of college) and ‘OWL’ (Old Warden’s Lodgings – because it occupies the building where the Warden once resided). The college libraries have a Facebook group which is worth joining to get the latest news and announcements from the library staff.

Although as a graduate (especially in the Arts) you will find you have to use the more specialised libraries around Oxford, both Merton libraries are great resources. OWL caters largely for books for the undergraduate courses, but you will find amongst the shelves many items of use to graduates too. MOB holds a wealth of reference material, including dictionaries, encyclopaedia, atlases, and a surprisingly large section on English place names, alongside the ‘Mertonensia’ section – several shelves of works on Mertonians, by Mertonians and on Merton. Both of these places are quiet and spacious places to work, conveniently located within college.

All Merton books are registered in the central Oxford catalogues – SOLO, which you can browse here. Search for any book, and then choose ‘Merton College Library’ from the list on the right to see if Merton has it. In addition, if you come across a book which the library doesn’t hold, but which you feel it should, you can recommend it to one of the team of librarians.

MOB is also worthy of note for being housed in the oldest continuously functioning library building for academics and students in the world. Above the main library is the old library, where Merton students have studied since 1373. There are tours of this beautiful library several times throughout the year, and many scholars from around the world visit Merton to use its resources. Have a look at the main library website for more information.