Mobile menu
Watercolour of Buckingham House's East Library

George III amassed an extensive collection of books and manuscripts

The King's Libraries

In 1761, George purchased Buckingham House, now Buckingham Palace. Here, the king furnished a sequence of rooms as a working library. These came to be known as the King’s Library. The Library formed the bulk of George III’s book collection. From the 1770s, other residences frequented by George III and his family included his childhood home of Kew Palace and the seaside residence at Weymouth of his brother Prince William Henry, Duke of Gloucester. Both residences had small pre-existing libraries to which the king continued to add books.

In addition to his working library in London and the collections at Kew and Weymouth, George III also maintained a substantial library at Windsor Castle. The Windsor library reflected the king’s personal interests. Strengths of this collection related to his interests in science and agriculture. Other subjects included religion, history, politics, European and British literature, the classics and architecture.

James Stephanoff (1789–1874)

Buckingham House: the Octagon Library

Lucius Annaeus Seneca (c.4 BC–AD 65)


?After John Baverstock Knight (1785–1859)

Frederick Augusta Barnard