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Knights of Columbus Vatican Film Library

COVID-19 Response: Special Collections reading rooms are open by appointment only to students, faculty, and staff of Saint Louis University. We are sorry that visiting researchers are not permitted until further notice. Please email us (vfl@slu.edu) at least one day in advance for arrangements to use the collections. All patrons must wear face masks and observe social distancing at all times.

The Knights of Columbus Vatican Film Library is a research collection for the study of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts. Established in 1953 with funding from the Knights of Columbus, it holds a unique collection of more than 37,000 microfilmed manuscripts from the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, in addition to another approximately 3,000 microfilmed manuscripts from numerous other libraries. It also holds more than 12,000 microfilmed Jesuit historical manuscripts relating to activities of the Society of Jesus in the Western Hemisphere from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries. Its collections of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts leaves and limited-edition facsimiles are frequently used for teaching and exhibition.


The library possesses a manuscript studies reference collection of more than 7,500 volumes. This collection is rich in manuscript catalogues and works on paleography, codicology, illumination, text editing, library history, and other topics to support the study of manuscripts and the texts and images they contain.

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Vatican Film Library Research Guide