Finding items in languages other than English

How to find books in languages other then English

Your Librarian

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Penny Chan
Contact me via our online reference service citing my name and the title of this guide.


Our Library has resources in a range of languages. Some of these can be found on the shelf, however most are in storage and need to be ordered through the catalogue.

As we are a research and reference library you will find our collection is set up a bit differently to your local library in that:

  • you cannot borrow books from our collection. They are just for use within the library.
  • our books are organised by subject rather than language
  • our collection is mainly non-fiction. We have some fiction but a larger range is likely to be held by your local library. See the Other libraries box on the right side of this page for a list of languages held by different public libraries.

This guide will show you how to:

  • find books and newspapers on our shelves in languages other than English
  • search our collection more broadly to find books, newspapers and journals in languages other than English
  • find resources to help you in learning a language other than English, including language dictionaries. 

State Library Victoria membership

You will need a State Library Victoria membership to order collection items from storage and access many of the online resources listed in this guide. This is free and you can join online. There is no membership card. You will receive a member number.

Accessing full-text from links on this guide

Many links on this guide are to the online resources our Library subscribes to. When you click on such links you will be asked to enter your member number or email address, and your password. 

If you have not yet made a password for your account, you can follow the links to create one now. If you are not a member yet you can follow the link to sign up.

Sign In page

Quick searches

Here are some quick searches for books in other languages.

Find on shelf means those items are in our open access reading rooms:

You can change the language from the search to find other languages.


Choose your preferred language from the dropdown ↓ to translate this guide:

  • Alternatively, you can go to Google translate, click on 'websites', paste in this guide's address and choose your preferred language
  • The State Library of NSW also offers a helpful glossary which translates words used by libraries into many different languages.

Other libraries

Sourced from: State of Victoria Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions. (2021). Directory of public library services in Victoria 2021 (PDF)

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