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Princeton University: East Asian Library

Research access guide for Princeton University.

General Information

Facility: Princeton University East Asian Library
Address: 33 Frist Campus Center
Room 317
Princeton, NJ 08544
Phone: (609) 258-3182
FAX: (609) 258-4573
Email: email
Hours: Hours of Operation

About the Library:

Originally based on the Gest Oriental Library, the East Asian Library is still held in the Gest Library. The original collection, compiled by Guion Moore Gest, is comprised almost entirely of rare books in Chinese, primarily from the Ming and Qing dynasties.

The Friends of the Princeton University Library offer short-term grants to promote scholarly research within the collections. More information on these grants can be found on the Library Research Grants webpage.

For more information about the Japanese collection, please contact Setsuko Noguchi at (609) 258-6159 or by email.

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For all comments and questions about the Guide, please e-mail us:

Summary of Collections

Collection size: as of September 2014 the East Asian Library contained 817,000 volumes of which 244,000 are Japanese. The East Asian Library's collections are focused on literature, history, philosophy, religion, geography, classics, and traditional Chinese medicine.


Online catalog:


Catalog of the approximately 2,000 shadow figures collected by Guion Moore Gest, the founder of the Gest Library.

Collection of online copies of the East Asian Library Journal and the Gest Library Journal dating back to the first volume in 1986.

A collection of rare books digitized by Princeton University and made available online.


How to Use the Facility

Rare Books Collections

The East Asian Library includes several rare book collections, which are primarily stored offsite. For information on these collections and how to use them, please visit the library's Using Rare Books webpage.

Borrowing Privileges

Visitors to the Princeton University Libraries are required to purchase an access card in order to use the collections on site. Those wishing to borrow circulating materials must also purchase borrowing privileges. Prices vary according to the individual and length of time; for more information, please visit their Visitors Privileges webpage.

Printing, Scanning, and Photocopying

Printing is limited to Princeton faculty, staff, and students, as well as those with access or borrower's cards. Printing is limited to 50 sheets a week, 200 sheets per month, and 2,100 sheets per year. Photocopiers are available in the library, and use TigerCards or prepaid photocopy cards, which can be purchased at the circulation desks of the Firestone, Engineering, Lewis, and Stokes libraries. Money can be added to these cards in the East Asian Library.

Scanners are available for use and capable of scanning in multiple file formats, which can be sent or saved to multiple locations. Princeton notes that these are primarily intended for students and faculty within the department, and others should make arrangements in advance with the department.

North American Coordinating Council on Japanese Library Resources
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