Moscow University Library

Mail27 Lomonosovsky Prospect, Moscow, 119192
Telephone+7 (495) 939-42-42
Fax+7 (495) 939-34-61

Moscow University LibraryThe Moscow University Library, the oldest in Russia, was opened in 1755. Mikhail Lomonosov, the founder of the University, saw the Library as a secular institution open to the general public and free for all its patrons. In the XVIII and XIX centuries it was the only free library in Moscow, very popular among the readership. Its patrons enjoyed the wealth of its extensive collections and often donated or bequeathed some valuable books and their private collections to the University Library.

Today the role of the Moscow University Library System cannot be overestimated; it is invaluable for educating and training highly qualified specialists. The Library provides Interlibrary Loan service through its contacts with 352 institutions in 55 countries, the major university library systems among them. Being the member of the Russian Library Association, the Moscow University Library is a scientific and methodological center for libraries of other Russian educational institutions.

The Moscow University Library System includes about 10 million books, 2.5 million among them in foreign languages; every year the collections are added with about 130, 000 Russian and foreign books and periodicals. The Library is proud of its collection of rare books and manuscripts, including early printed books, early editions of books and periodicals, both Russian and foreign, from XVIII century to the present. The Library Archives hold materials by Russian outstanding scientists and scholars, writers and public figures.

The Moscow University Library System currently serves about 65,000 patrons. In 16 different campus buildings there are 20 branches of the circulating library, 63 reading rooms, and a number of reference libraries. The new MSU Main Library Building on Lomonosovsky Prospect was opened in January 2005.

In 1990 we started to add the Library’s traditional index card catalog with digitized catalogs. So far we have scanned the Author Catalog covering all the University Library sources acquired from 1755 to 2005. The electronic catalog covers books and theses from 1990 to date. See the Moscow University Library catalogs at