Reading Room

Students and Staff of the UvA and external visitors are most welcome in the Reading Room. The opening hours are Monday through Friday from 9:30 am - 5:00 pm.

Please note! Tuesday afternoon, June 4, the Reading Room will be closed from 12:30 p.m. onwards.

There are 40 workplaces in the Reading Room, available exclusively for consulting heritage material and the books from the reference libraries. In addition, there are two viewing PCs for consulting the catalogue and two login PCs for UvA students and staff. There is also a microfiche reader. The tables are equipped with power points and there is open WIFI.

UvA student or staff member

Not affiliated to the UvA

Library card

UvA staff and students must bring their employee or college card, external visitors must be in possession of a library card. An external library card can be arranged via: library card.

You can use the search portal on our website to request material from CataloguePlus, from the catalogue of the theatre collection and from the music collection, you can go to the image bank and to the collection descriptions of collections and archives. However, not all materials from the Allard Pierson can yet be found and requested online.

If you are unable to request materials or you have another question or would like to make a reservation for a workplace in the Reading Room, please use the contact form.




Photographs may be taken of the material handed over in the Reading Room, provided the condition of the material allows it. No flash or tripod may be used.
Please observe copyright law when scanning.

Using the ScanTent, you take high-quality images with your mobile phone of both loose and bound material up to A3 size. The ScanTent has a phone mount that keeps your phone stable while shooting and LED lighting that ensures optimal exposure.
You can use the ScanTent with and without a special app. Via Play Store (DocScan – Apps on Google Play) or Apple Store (Doc Scan PDF Scanner) or via the QR code on the tent, you can download this special app. This has the advantage that you can save and edit your photos more easily and upload them to Transkribus, (, a platform for digitization, AI-driven text recognition and transcription. There are two ScanTents in the Reading Room of the Allard Pierson, especially for making images from printed and handwritten material.
There are also two ScanTents available for loan, max seven days (for UvA students and staff). Would you like to borrow a ScanTent?  Send a request to the Reading Room desk via the contact form.

Uva student or staff member

For professional images intended for publication, submit a request via the Request digitization button in CataloguePlus. You will find this request option for material older than 1900. If this request option is missing, please contact the Reading Room staff via the contact form, see Reproductions

House rules

Items from the heritage collections of the Allard Pierson are often rare and valuable. That is why we have drawn up some house rules.