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Special Collections: Welcome

Special Collections is located in the basement of the Boole Library, UCC. It holds rare books and older printed books as well as manuscripts.

About Special Collections in UCC Library

Special Collections is home to UCC's unique collections of literary manuscripts, early printed books pre-1850, books from presses, collections donated from individuals, 18th - 20th century newspapers, theses, maps, pamphlets and microfilm.

Special Collections are “elements of distinction that serve to differentiate an academic or research library from its peers” (Dooley & Luce).

We, in Special Collections, have a dual role, not only to facilitate current research but also to care and conserve these unique and distinctive materials for future users. 

Special Collections staff members work with students and faculty to support learning and teaching at UCC offering access to unique primary sources through instruction sessions and exhibitions. Special Collections also serves the research needs of external scholars, hosting researchers from around the globe interested in using the collections. Special Collections has achieved international recognition in several specific areas of research, most notably: Irish studies; Celtic studies, and Frank O'Connor. Check the Special Collections' website to learn more about specific holdings at Special Collections, UCC Library. 

Treasures of Special Collections

On the left is anIrish Gaelic manuscript Trí bior-ghaoithe an Bháis (Three Shafts of Death) produced 1723. ( Lss. 23). The scribe is Lábhras Mac Domhnaill from Ath na nGallóglach (Annagally, Co. Monaghan). Trí bior-ghaoithe an Bháis completes Geoffrey Keating's (1569 - 1664) series of moral reflections on death and the conduct of human life. 

In the middle is a manuscript of recipes, cures and household hints produced 1829-45 (Mss. 59). This page gives a recipe for lemon cream and it's very good!

On the right is John Sibthorp's Flora Graeca. (London, printed by Richard Taylor, 1806-184).] It was a publication of plants from Greece in the late 18th century. The botanical descriptions and illustrations were both of scientific and horticultural interest. 

Monthly Spotlight

John K'Eogh's Botanalogia Universalis Hibernica is listed in the Queen's College Cork catalogue of 1860. John K'Eogh (c.1681–1754) was a clergyman and naturalist, and was born in Strokestown and educated by his father prior to attending Trinity in 1705. He was chaplain to the 4th Baron Kingston at Mitchelstown Castle.

The Botanalogia is an alphabetical list of plants growing in Ireland, with their names given in English, Latin, and Irish. It describes the plants' medicinal properties and was based mainly on the plants grown in Kingston's garden. The work is of historical value as evidence of the plants which were cultivated at that time, which include orange and lemon trees grown in what was a very early greenhouse. The Botanalogia remained for many years as one of the standard reference works on the flora of this island. K'Eogh also wrote Zoologia Medicinalis Hibernica (Dublin, 1739); and A Vindication of the Antiquities of Ireland (Dublin, 1748).

Further information relating to various plants may also be found in a herbal. An example of this is Salmon's English Herbal. Salmon's English Herbal gives a detailed entry on "Bears Breech."






Special Collections

Elaine Harrington
Special Collections, UCC Library, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland
+353 (21) 490-3484
Website / Blog Page
Social:Twitter Page

Address of Special Collections

Special Collections, Q-1,
Boole Library
University College Cork
+353 (21) 490-2282

Map to Special Collections

The reference desk and reading rooms for Special Collections are located on the basement floor of the Boole Library.

Special Collections can be accessed via the central or the north staircases. On the map follow the red dots to the information point. For a bigger image right click on the map and open the image in a new tab.

Special Collections can be emailed or the website can be searched 24/7.

Opening Hours

We are open Monday - Friday and the website has semester and holiday opening hours.

Additional Guides

Copyright © 2013 Boole Library, University College Cork, College Road, Cork, Ireland. Tel. +353 21 4902292, Fax: +353 21 4273428. Email: