skip to content

Using the MMLL Library

A long row of desks and chairs in the MMLL Library, next to the Spanish Section, looking out over the grass in the middle of the Raised Faculty Building.

Who can use the library?

All current members of the University are automatically registered to borrow, including staff, affiliated staff, undergraduates, postgraduates and affiliated students.  

Academic visitors attached to a College or to another University department may register to borrow. They will need a letter of introduction from the department or the College that is hosting them.

Members of the public, Cambridge alumni and students from other universities can use the MMLL Library for reference throughout the year.

Find out more about borrowing.


Navigating the library

On the first floor of the library you will find French, Latin American, Portuguese, Catalan, Spanish, Italian, German, our general books (classified under Z) and the Student Room. The second floor is home to medieval European languages, bound periodicals, Dutch, our Film collection, Cinema, Art, Linguistics, Greek, Romanian, Polish, Ukrainian and Russian. The third floor – the Beit Library – houses a German research collection which is particularly strong on literature of the classical period and of the nineteenth century.

You can get to know the library better by taking a virtual tour on our YouTube channel.


How are the collections organised?

The MMLL Library has a unique classification scheme. The collection is largely arranged by language, and classmarks for each section begin with a different letter or letters. All language sections follow the basic pattern below:

G German

G1 Bibliography

G3 Grammar and language

G4 Thought

G5 Literary criticism

G6 Anthologies

G7 Individual literary authors

G8 History

G9 Social history, culture, media, communications


Other sections, such as linguistics (L), art (A) and cinema (CINE), are arranged differently. If you need more information on the details of the classification scheme, just ask a member of staff.


Electronic Legal Deposit

There is an Electronic Legal Deposit (ELD) terminal on the second floor of the library, near the Russian section, however Electronic Legal Deposit material is currently unavailable due to a cyber attack at the British Library. If you are looking for a title which is only available via ELD, you should contact the Library team so that we can try and source it for you as a regular ebook.



You will also find a printer in the stairwell just beyond the library entrance. To use it you can either install DS-Print software on your laptop, or you can print directly from a web browser by signing into Web Print with your CRSid and password.


Other services

We host Tea & Biscuits at 3pm in the library foyer every Wednesday in term time – all staff and students are welcome to join us for a well-deserved break. In the foyer you’ll also find a regularly updated book exhibition and a selection of foreign-language magazines and literary journals available for reference. We give away old magazine issues and unwanted books for you to take home for free.

In the foyer we have a range of accessibility material which you can use in the library, including wrist rests, coloured overlays and an ergonomic mouse. You can also ask at the desk for laptop stands, book stands and writing slopes.

We can provide DVD/Blu-ray drives and laptops for loan, as well as headphones and chargers to be used in the library. There are also four PCs in the library containing built-in DVD drives.

Library news

Easter closure

28 March 2024

The MMLL Library will be closing briefly for the Easter bank holiday weekend, from Friday 29th March to Monday 1st April inclusive. Our normal vacation opening hours of 9:30am - 5pm will then resume on Tuesday 2nd April. We hope you have a restful bank holiday weekend!

Keep in touch