To acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life.

W. Somerset Maugham


Latest News


Substantial Set of Fortnight Magazine For Sale

05 August 2016

The Library is pleased to offer for sale a substantial but incomplete set of the political and cultural magazine Fortnight that was published in Belfast from 1970 – 2011. This is a rare opportunity to purchase this iconic publication that captured the highs and lows of some of Belfast’s most turbulent years. Nearly everyone who was anyone had their ‘spake’ in the magazine. Fortnight also featured illustrations by some of the legends of graphic art, including Martyn...

August Events at the Linen Hall

29 July 2016

Linen Hall Reaches for the Stars in Exclusive August Astronomical Exhibition Exclusive to the Linen Hall in August is the astonishing astronomical photographic exhibition Images of Starlight. This stunning display of astrophotography, launching on 2 August, captures the many phases and faces of the universe. Also in August, human rights campaigner and theatre pioneer Alice Milligan is remembered in the play Alice Milligan – A Girl of Genius. And we explore Sinn Féin’s...

Linen Hall Reaches for the Stars with Astonishing Astronomical Exhibition Images of Starlight

25 July 2016

On Tuesday 2 August at 12midday, the Linen Hall Library will exclusively launch Images of Starlight, an astonishing collection of astronomical pictures jointly produced by the Irish Astronomical Association (IAA), in conjunction with the Irish Astronomical Society (IAS) and the Irish Federation of Astronomical Societies (IFAS). Includes previously unseen pictures taken in Northern Ireland. From the sparkling curtain of the Milky Way to romantic moonscapes to the electric colour undulations...

July Events at the Linen Hall

01 July 2016

LINEN HALL GOES BACK TO BECKETT WITH WEEK OF EVENTS HONOURING THE GREAT IRISH WRITER Possibly the most influential writer of the 20th century, Samuel Beckett is centre stage in the Linen Hall events calendar for July. A series of events including a workshop, lecture and book launch illuminate the genius behind Beckett’s style. Also in July we cameo social reformer Mary Ann McCracken as well as examine the Ulster Protestant in Irish Literature. The schedule for July, in...

Linen Hall Charity Shop to Relocate

13 June 2016

The popular Linen Hall Charity Book Shop, currently located at 21 Fountain Street, will be closing on 30 June and moving to new premises. To mark the move, selected titles will be on sale for 50p. Details of the new location will be announced soon.

Do You Have Information on a 1955 Hanging?

13 June 2016

New Zealand novelist, poet and scriptwriter Dame Fiona Kidman DNZM, OBE has been in Belfast for the Belfast Book Festival talking about her novel The Infinite Air, and conducting research into a fascinating new book she is writing about the hanging of a Belfast man in New Zealand in 1955. Albert from Belfast was the second to last person hanged in New Zealand. He had become embroiled in a fight during which a man was killed. Many felt that Albert’s blame for the killing was unjust,...

Library Welcomes Battle of Jutland Artefact

09 June 2016

Most donations to the Library are books or magazines and occasionally letters, but one recent gift is somewhat more unusual. Last week Library visitor Mrs Myrtle Montgomery appeared at the Irish and Reference desk on level 4 with a miniature teak barrel made from H.M.S. Iron Duke, the flagship at the Battle of Jutland. She has kindly donated this historical artefact to our archives. On the front of the barrel is a label which reads ‘From the teak of H.M.S. Iron Duke Admiral...

Staging 2016 Gets Standing Ovation

06 June 2016

Thanks to funding from the Department for Communities, the Library recently completed a 13-week, after-school programme of drama and creative writing for local children aged 5 – 15. The aims of the project were to encourage creativity, build confidence and remove barriers to participation. The project was led by Linen Hall Education and Outreach Officer Jenna Stevenson who has taught art education in the UK and internationally for eight years. Each child created his/her own book, and...

Linen Hall Library Recognises the Unsung Heroes of the Battlefield – The Stretcher Bearers

03 June 2016

The battlefields of WWI were brutal killing fields for soldiers with arms. But what about those without arms? The Linen Hall’s new and exclusive exhibition Stretcher Bearer! The Last Days of Mankind*, gives recognition to one of WWI’s most vital, but often overlooked heroes – the battlefield stretcher bearers. Produced by Northern Ireland artist Leslie Nicholl, the exhibition is free and runs from 3 June - 30 July. The exhibition is accompanied by poems by Sam Burnside,...