St Paul's Cathedral Collection

St Paul's, with its world-famous dome, is an iconic feature of the London skyline. Step inside and you can enjoy the cathedral's awe-inspiring interior, and uncover fascinating stories about its history.

The Cathedral Collections form a unique record of the spiritual, liturgical, architectural, administrative and social life of one of the world’s outstanding buildings and its imposing predecessor, the Pre-fire Cathedral. They are maintained as an asset for current use and as a legacy for future generations.

The Library

The books and manuscripts are housed in one of London’s best-preserved  18th century interiors, the cathedral library. The Dean and Chapter of  St Paul’s have retained a working library in the present building since  1720. Today it houses approximately 21,500 volumes, including printed  books, manuscripts and separate pamphlets. These works accrued through  purchase, bequest and donation, largely from 1690 onwards, form a  collection still used today by academics, students and researchers of  all kinds. Dean and Chapter, Minor Canons, and Cathedral School archives once held in the Library are now on long-term deposit at London Metropolitan Archives.

Object Collection

The Object Collection denotes a great variety of objects  associated with the history of the construction and decoration of St  Paul’s Cathedral and objects which have been or still are used or  presented within the building. Within the Object Collection there are  some very remarkable and important artefacts that are significant to the history of St Paul’s Cathedral, including models, paintings and  archaeological stones. Many famous artists, architects and designers  have contributed works to the decoration of the Cathedral including  William Holman Hunt, William Burges, Alfred Stevens and G.F. Watts,  Auguste Rodin and Henry Moore.

Architectural Archive

The Architectural Archive contains the papers and drawings created by  the Surveyor to the Fabric and related drawings by consultants,  contractors, artists and designers. The drawings and records chart the original design and construction of the Cathedral by Christopher Wren and the architectural history of the building to the present day.


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