Samuel Beckett
Digital Manuscript Project
Beckett Digital Library: Demo

Welcome to the Beckett Digital Library Demo


This demo of the BDL consists of a small selection of 25 book volumes, one per author for every letter of the alphabet except X. The demo fully functions as the subscription version does, but all links to pages outside the demo that are subscription only are redirected to the BDMP homepage. The 'Student Library' section of the BDL is only available in the subscription version.


The BDL is a digital reconstruction of Samuel Beckett's personal library, based on the volumes preserved at his apartment in Paris, in archives (Beckett International Foundation) and private collections (James and Elizabeth Knowlson Collection, Anne Atik, Noga Arikha, Terrence Killeen,...). It currently houses 761 extant volumes, as well as 248 virtual entries for which no physical copy has been retrieved.

The BDL module is a part of the Beckett Digital Manuscript Project and contains scans of book covers, title pages, all pages with reading traces, flyleaves, colophons, tables of contents, indexes and inserts of various kinds. In addition to facsimiles, the BDL also offers transcriptions of readings traces and links to Beckett's manuscripts.

The BDL is accompanied by a monograph (Dirk Van Hulle and Mark Nixon, Samuel Beckett's Library, Cambridge UP, 2013)

Explore the BDL Demo

Reading Traces

The volumes in Beckett's library show different forms of reading traces, ranging from underlined or marked passages and dog-eared pages to 'marginalia' (annotations in the margins of a book). Here is a list of all books in the selection of 25 with marginalia, while reading traces in general may be explored here.

Links to the manuscripts

Beckett often used the books that he read in his own writing. Whenever a passage is alluded to in the drafts of his works, this is highlighted by a 'Manuscript Link' in the bibliographic description of the volume in question. Here is a list of library books in the demo referred to in Beckett’s manuscripts.

Guide to users

A manual for the BDL is available at all times by clicking on the icon in the navigation bar.

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