The State Library digital: numerous online services for users

In the light of the current situation, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek is directing its focus more strongly at its digital contents and optimizes its services for users. These services range from a simplified registration process to virtual exhibitions.

The library building of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek currently remains closed for visitors. In order to support its users, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek offers numerous digital contents and search possibilities on its web pages. In addition, its services and procedures are being optimized for users.

Dr. Klaus Ceynowa, Director General of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek: "We are aware of the difficulties that students and researchers in particular are currently facing with respect to the procurement of materials. For this reason, we are pleased that we can support our users with numerous digital contents and the associated search tools and can simplify access to these sources."

With 2.5 million copyright-free works digitized in their entirety, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek holds the largest digital data stock of all German libraries. The digital collections are freely accessible on the Internet; the digital copies can be downloaded as PDF files.
In addition, registered users can access around 24,000 electronic specialist journals, almost 700 specialist databases and around 800,000 e-books, for which licenses are acquired continuously from academic publishing houses. The spectrum ranges from subject-related bibliographies to digitized source collections, up to extensive newspaper archives.
→  →  Overview of services

For scholarship in particular, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, partly in cooperation with partner institutions, operates four subject-centred portals for fields of specialisation within the framework of the Specialised Information Services (Fachinformationsdienste, FID) funded by the German Research Foundation:  (Specialised Information Service for Historical Studies)  (Specialised Information Service for Musicology)  (Research portal on East, Eastern-Central and South-Eastern Europe)  (Specialised Information Service for Classical Studies)

The adaptation of the conditions of use and of the workflows to the current situation is of particular importance to our users. The simplified registration process thus permits obtaining a user ID without having to come to the library in person. In addition, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek offers pragmatic support in the form of the document delivery services at a charge "subito", "eBooks on Demand" and the document delivery service "Altes Buch".

The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek launches a further service today: As of now, users can have book orders delivered to their home within Germany by using a book delivery service at a sensibly priced fee. This creates a temporary replacement for the traditional book loan which is not possible at present.

Last but not least, we currently offer webinars on a variety of topics every Tuesday and Thursday.

Further freely accessible portals of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek on special subjects:

  • The newspaper portal digiPress is a freely accessible research portal for digitized historical newspapers from the 17th century up to the early 20th century. With around 8 million newspaper pages from over 1,000 newspapers, digiPress constitutes the only service of this kind currently offered by a library in Germany.
  • The Historisches Lexikon Bayerns (historical encyclopaedia of Bavaria) presents topics from the regional history of Bavaria, Franconia and Swabia from the current state of research. The articles are written by experts and are partly complemented by audio and video files.
  • With the online portal bavarikon, the Free State of Bavaria presents over 300,000 treasures of art and culture from almost 90 Bavarian institutions on the Internet. It contains a broad variety of high-resolution digital copies of paintings and photographs, historical maps, coins, manuscripts, archive materials, archaeological finds, etc.
  • The Literaturportal Bayern offers numerous services for everybody interested in literature: Portraits of writers, personal papers, theme essays – the placement into context and interconnection of authors, institutions and events offers a common harbour to the literary life in the cities and regions.
  • The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek currently offers 16 virtual exhibitions – among them also the photography exhibition "MUNICH. LOOK here!" – on a broad variety of topics, from the art of book illumination from the Middle Ages up to modern times, the collection of artists’ books of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, to the search for Nazi loot, up to insights into the construction history of the library building or musical topics.

All services are also accessible via the website of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek:

Press release for download
Press release  (PDF, 107 KB)  (in German)

Contact persons

Peter Schnitzlein
Bayerische Staatsbibliothek
Press and Public Relations
Ludwigstr. 16, 80539 Munich
Phone  +49 89 28638-2429


About the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek:
Founded in 1558 by Duke Albrecht V, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek is an international research library of world renown. Holding around 33 million media, the library forms part of the most important heritage institutions worldwide. With more than 2.5 million digitized works, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek holds the largest digital data stock of all German libraries. The library offers a broad variety of services in the field of innovative digital use scenarios.