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About The European Library datasets

As an aggregator of both digital collections and bibliographic data, The European Library offers a unique set of data from Europe’s libraries. We aim to promote the wider use and exposure of the collections of our member libraries and we have developed a suite of services to access and search the data. 

The European Library Open Search API  provides access to raw data describing the collections and catalogues of national and research libraries as presented in The European Library portal. The functionality of the API will continue to be developed.

The European Library Open Dataset offers access to a vast set of bibliographic data, comprising nearly 60 million bibliographical records made available by our partner libraries. The data is made available under the licensing terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0, which allows the unrestricted use of the data for any purpose at all by anyone, including commercial use.

The European Library also makes available a subset of the  RLUK  (Research Libraries UK) database comprising nearly 20 million bibliographic records from 34 UK libraries. 


How to access the datasets

Sign up for an API Key now and explore data from Europe’s libraries through our Open Search API!

To access the Open Search API, follow the access link to The European Library API V 2.0, below, and then follow Get Access/Login. You will be redirected to a registration page that will guide you to apply to an API key, which will allow you to access the data.  Once registered your API key can be found in Your details, and used for any data service of The European Library that requires it.

To access The European Library Open Dataset, follow the link to the Open Dataset section below. 

To access the RLUK Linked Open dataset, follow link to the RLUK Linked Open Data section below. You may then select from several versions of data from the dataset.  

Available APIs and Datasets

The European Library API v2.0

The European Library API v2.0

The European Library API v2.0 offers access to the bibliographic and digital collections from Europe's national and research libraries as presented in the portal. The API returns results as raw data in machine-friendly formats, such as JSON, XML ( Dublin Core2), and RDF.

The European Library Open Dataset

The European Library Open Dataset

The European Library Open Dataset offers access to a vast set of bibliographic data made available by its partner libraries. The data is made available under the licensing terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0, which allows the unrestricted use of the data for any purpose at all by anyone, including commercial use.

Metadata Harvesting - OAI-PMH Repository

Metadata Harvesting - OAI-PMH Repository

The European Library provides access to its datasets metadata harvesting applications via an OAI-PMH v2.0 compliant repository.

RLUK Linked Open Data

Research Libraries UK Linked Open Data

The RLUK Database is an established Union Catalogue provided by Research Libraries UK. This is a subset of the RLUK database comprising nearly 20 million bibliographic records from 34 libraries that describe and point to some of the richest collections in the UK, covering subjects from anthropology to zoology.