The Monumenta Serica Institute maintains its own editorial library. It houses a fair-sized collection of Sinological reference works mainly serving the editorial work on the publications of the Institute, i.e., the Monumenta Serica-Journal of Oriental Studies and the two book series Monumenta Serica Monograph Series and Collectanea Serica.
The collection comprises ca. 81,000 volumes of books and periodicals, more than two thirds of them in Chinese language. Among these, there are many traditionally bound works, i.e., stitched fascicles. The library also holds books in Japanese and in European languages, and a small number of works in other East and Central Asian languages. Currently, the library subscribes to ca. 350 titles of periodicals in Chinese, Japanese and Western languages.
The collection is primarily devoted to China. All aspects and periods of China and its civilization are represented, with a focus on the humanities, especially history, philosophy, religion, language, literature, and art. There is also a separate collection of S.V.D. publications printed in China, mainly of catechetical nature, as well as a collection of microfilms of important Chinese Christian writings from the China mission, mainly from the collections of the Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris), the Vatican Library (Rome) and the Library of Congress (Washington D.C.).
Part of the collection, mainly reference works such as encyclopaedias, dictionaries and bibliographies, are kept in the reading room of the Institute, directly accessible to editorial staff and visitors alike. The majority of books are shelved in the stacks.
An extension to the Institute was built in 2005, comprising spacious stacks as well as two offices for the editorial and library work.
The Institute maintains exchange relations with many libraries and Sinological research institutions around the world. The Institute and the library are open to students and scholars alike and render support to their research projects.
Visitors are kindly requested to make an appointment in advance.