Lambeth Palace Library

The National Library & Archive
of the Church of England

  • Library /Exhibition Closure
    Please note that both the Library and the exhibition are closed on Monday 29 May for the Bank Holiday and on Tuesday 30 May because of a National Church Institutions closure day.
A declaration of our hopes for the future’
Coronations from the middle ages to the present day

To mark the coronation of King Charles III, this exhibition will show material from the Lambeth Palace Library collections relating to previous coronations, from the coronation of Henry I in 1100 to that of Elizabeth II in 1953. Highlights include the Coronation Charter of Henry I, the manuscript coronation service prepared for William III and Mary II, Archbishop Wake’s notes for the coronation of George II, a letter from George VI thanking Archbishop Lang for his part in the coronation ceremony, and the Bible upon which Elizabeth II swore her coronation oath.

In conjunction with this exhibition, until 13 June, there will also be a display of artefacts associated with previous coronations, including the cope and mitre worn by Archbishop Fisher in 1953 and the large banners from the 1902 coronation from which Archbishop Frederick Temple had to read the service because of his failing eyesight.

This free exhibition will run from 12 April to 13 July 2023 at Lambeth Palace Library.

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Upcoming Events


Librarian carrying tottering pile of books in the Great Hall, Lambeth Palace Library

Our vision & mission, a brief history of the Library, and a tour of our new building.
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Using the Library

Saint John writing the Apocalypse on Patmos with an angel whispering in his ear over his shoulder.

How to obtain a ticket, book an appointment, and find us.
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Shepherds watch the sheep while angels above announce the birth of Jesus.

Catalogues, guides, and information about individual collections.
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Support our Work

Help make the work of the library possible. Your generosity is vital in helping us to care for nationally significant collections, manuscripts and rare books. With your support the conservation, cataloguing, and digitisation of this important collection can continue to be undertaken, preserving the treasures of the past for future generations and ensuring they remain free and accessible to all. 

The Friends of the Library

The Friends of Lambeth Palace Library (registered charity no. 313023) was founded in 1964 to support the Library. It provides invaluable assistance in the acquisition of rare books and manuscripts and in the conservation of the collections, helping the Library to develop and flourish. Friends receive regular invitations to lectures, behind the scenes tours, exhibitions and events in the Library and Palace.

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Guillaume de Deguileville seated with an open book on the desk before him which is kept open by strings and weights.

Imaging Services, Exhibition Loans and self-service photography for the public.

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Collections Care

Photo of men carrying straw into a church

The new Collections Care studio is at the heart of the Library’s design and is central to its mission.

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Services to the wider Church

The Operations team provide internal records storage and retrieval services for NCI staff and respond to diocesan enquiries.
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The Library Blog – A Monument of Fame

Our blog is so named because James I famously called Lambeth Palace Library “a monument of fame in my kingdom”. The blog contains posts about important books, manuscripts and archives from the collections and the stories behind them, as well as news about Library developments.

Detail of an illuminated letter B containing a Tree of Jesse. At the centre we see the Virgin and Child.