Access and Library Policies

Rules and Regulations

The Gennadius Library is a privately supported Research and Rare Book library. Its Special Collections include manuscripts, archives, rare books and works of art. Many of its holdings are invaluable and irreplaceable. Please respect the privilege of handling these items and help us preserve the material in the best possible way by following the rules and regulations of the Reading Room.

The Gennadius Library is non-circulating; no book or document may leave the library.

All readers must follow the instructions of the desk attendants and abide by the rules and regulations of the Reading Room [link to Regulation]. Please consult the regulation prior to visiting the library. The Main Reading Room is reserved for the use of the library’s collections by registered researchers. All library materials must be handled with great care to ensure their safety and preservation.


Regular Academic year hours (September-June)

Open Stacks Research Collection                Rare Books & Special Collections

Monday           9:00 to 16:45                           Monday           10:00 to 15:30

Tuesday          9:00 to 16:45                           Tuesday          10:00 to 15:30

Wednesday     9:00 to 16:45                           Wednesday     10:00 to 15:30

Thursday         9:00 to 19:45                           Thursday         12:00 to 19:00

Friday             9:00 to 16:45                           Friday              10:00 to 15:30

Saturday         9:00 to 13:45                           Saturday          10:00 to 12:00

Summer Hours (July 1 - August 31, 2024)

Monday - Thursday: 9.00-16.30

Friday: 9.00-15.00

Saturday: closed

The Gennadius Library will be closed: July 4 & August 12-17, 2024.


Readers must clear their desks and proceed to the exit 15 minutes prior to closing time.

Please note that access and use of the Archives is subject to a separate set of rules and regulations.


Using the Library

First-time readers must apply for a library card. Please click on the "Apply Now" button below. 

If you have any questions contact the desk attendant at:


Library privileges are personal and individual. They may not be transferred to or used on behalf of other individuals.

Please show your library card at the guard on 54 Souidias street (across the street from the Gennadius Library) in order to gain access into the Gennadeion gardens.

Due to the restricted space in the reading room and the special nature of the collections, high school students, as well as students of Technical Schools and College students enrolled in the first three years of their studies are not normally allowed to use the Library in groups.

Undergraduates who are interested in studying in the Library or to work with rare materials, manuscripts or archival collections should present a letter of introduction from their academic supervisor. An interview with the librarian may be necessary for access to some materials.

Sign-in:  Readers are required to present their library card and register in the readers’ book on the desk upon entry and exit.

Do not bring any of the following items into the library:  handbags, briefcases, bookbags, plastic bags, computer cases, food or drink of any kind. Please note that mobile phones should be switched off if brought into the library. Violators may have their library cards revoked.

Lockers: Lockers are available for temporary storage of these items in the cloakroom to the right of the entrance of the Library. Keys may be obtained from the desk attendant inside the Reading Room.  Please use a locker only during the time you are actually in the building, and return the key when you leave. Coats must be left in the cloakroom, either locked in the closets or on hangers.

Smoking is not allowed anywhere in the library.

Please show respect to other users and avoid talking in the library.

All areas of the Library are monitored by security cameras.


Open Stacks Research Collection

The research collection is open to registered users. Books from the Open Stacks have to be checked-out and checked-in in the designated kiosks (Levels 0 and -2). Each reader is allowed to check-out 20 books per day. Readers should not reshelve the books, nor should they leave one open book stacked upon another.

Two Reading Rooms are available in -2 and a consultation area in -1. Upon arrival, the Desk Attendant will assign a numbered reading seat to each user. Reference books can be consulted in the Main Reading Room.

Before using the Open Stacks, you have to join a tour.

In the summer, tours are offered daily at 10.00, 12.00 and 14.00.

During the regular academic year tours are scheduled on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday at 10.00, 12.00 and 14.00, Thursday at 12.00, 14.00 and 15.00, and Saturday at 10.00 and 12.00.

The electronic catalogue of the Library AMBROSIA and other electronic resources are accessible at work stations in the Reading Rooms and via WI-FI.

Research workstations are provided for library-related research and educational purposes only. No e-mail browsing is allowed. The use of library research workstations is subject to applicable laws, copyright restrictions, and license agreements.

Available online resources: From the workstations or via Wi-Fi readers have access to the Library’s public websites, including the online catalog, and networked online resources covering numerous subject areas. Access to some resources may be limited to one or more locations; some resources may require additional authorization. Generally, these restrictions on access reflect licensing requirements to which the Library is bound.

Material may be reproduced for study purposes by the readers using their smart phones and cameras or the small A3 scanners located in the Main Reading Room and in the Costa Constantine Digital Reference Area provided that the condition of the material allows it.

The same applies for photocopying. Limited xerographic services are offered by the Library. A limited number of photocopies can be ordered (50 per day) at € 0,20 per copy. It is against the law to copy whole books. Photocopies are one-sided and usually single sheet. Two-page photocopying may be done only if the book binding is in good condition.


Rare Books and Special Collections

Rare Books and Special Collections can be consulted only in the Main Reading Room after placing a request with the Desk Attendant, who assigns a seat to each reader.

Under no circumstances may a rare book, manuscript or other Special Collections material leave the Main Reading Room, nor may a reader transfer any of these to anyone but a staff member of the Library and s/he will be responsible for all material signed out to by him/her until this is returned to the Desk Attendant.


Paging Rare Books

A limited number of rare books can be consulted per day, after filling a special call slip and handing it to the Desk Attendant. Please allow thirty minutes for the retrieval of rare books.

While you are consulting a rare book, the call slip must be returned to the Desk Attendant; it should not be kept by the reader.  In order to discharge material make sure that you return them to the Desk Attendant and you do not leave books on the reading tables.

A rare book can be put on reserve for up to three days by returning it to the Desk Attendant.

Readers must notify the desk attendants in case they carry their own books, cameras, or scanners.


Manuscripts and Special Collections

To consult manuscripts, please contact the Librarian, Irini Solomonidi, to set up an interview. Each reader can consult only one manuscript at a time. You also need to contact the Librarian in advance for the study of brittle material, maps, engravings and works of art. Depending on the condition and type of material there may be limited access to the material or an appointment may need to be scheduled. Brittle material that exists in reproduction may not be consulted in the original.

Readers are expected to use more than ordinary care in the handling of materials from the collections, bearing in mind that the majority of them are irreplaceable.

  • The pages of manuscripts and printed books must be turned carefully.
  • Readers must use the provided book rests and “weighted snakes” following the instructions of the librarians.
  • They must not use fountain pens and they must refrain from touching any portion of the text or decoration.
  • Tracing from any book, manuscript, map or other material is not permitted. For no reason should readers make notes, underline, use a highlighter or adhesive post-it notes on the books.
  • Theft or vandalism of library books is a serious crime and will be dealt with accordingly.


No photocopying from manuscripts, rare books as well as books published before 1900 is permitted. When the condition of the material allows it, readers may use their own smart phones, cameras or the scanner located in the Main Reading Room for reproduction of material for study purposes.

No professional photography services are provided by the Library. Official authorization is required for Publication of Library material; for further information please click here.