University of Notre Dame


Hesburgh Libraries

Rare Books & Special Collections

Physical Exhibits in Special Collections

Opening Soon!

Printing the Nation: A Century of Irish Book Arts

January - July, 2023

What is an Irish book? Is it a book in the Irish language, printed in a Gaelic font? Is it a book by an Irish writer? Is it a book printed in Ireland on Irish-made paper?

We have selected books from the Hesburgh Libraries’ Special Collections to demonstrate the art and craft of the Irish book since 1900. The printing houses whose work is shown here have all been leaders in various aspects of book arts, from the press of the Yeats sisters in the early twentieth century to the Salvage Press of today.

The selection of font, illustrations, and decorative style were carefully considered by the printers and publishers, and this small variety of books display various aspects of the art of printing and book design as practiced in Ireland.

This exhibit is curated by Aedín Ní Bhróithe Clements (Irish Studies Librarian and Curator of Irish Studies Collections).

Spotlight Exhibits

November-December 2022 | Hesburgh Library Special Collections: A Focus on W. B. Yeats

The poet and playwright Willam Butler Yeats (1865-1939), a leader in the Irish Literary Revival, visited the University of Notre Dame on two occasions. This spotlight exhibit displays just a few examples from the extremely rich Yeats Collection in the Hesburgh Library Special Collections.

This exhibit is curated by Aedín Ní Bhróithe Clements (Irish Studies Librarian).



December 2022-January 2023 | The Ladies Flower-Garden of Ornamental Annuals

This exhibit presents the first volume from a series of books about ornamental flowers in British gardens written and illustrated by Jane Webb Loudon.

This exhibit is curated by Natasha Lyandres (Russian and East European Studies Librarian).



For information about previous spotlight exhibits, please refer to the History of Spotlight Exhibits page.

Upcoming Exhibits

Fall 2023

An exhibiton on Enslaved Peoples of the Western Hemisphere, early modern to modern period

Spring 2024

An exhibtion in conjunction with the Medieval Academy of America's Annual Meeting, which is to be hosted at Notre Dame.

Fall 2024


Spring 2025


Suggest an Exhibit

Many of the exhibits presented by the Department of Special Collections are produced in collaboration with members of the Notre Dame teaching and research faculty and are scheduled to coincide with significant academic conferences at the University. If you have a suggestion for a future exhibit and/or would like to assist in producing one, please contact Special Collections at 631-0290 or by e-mail.