HOLLIS is the library's main search interface. It includes the Harvard library catalog as well as a huge (and more heterogeneous) collection of citations for a variety of materials, including articles and book chapters. HOLLIS does not search the full-text of books and articles, though you find occasional exceptions.
This User Guide describes HOLLIS's system features. If you can't find the feature you're looking for, use the "search this guide" box at the top of the page.
If you would like search advice specific to your research topic, please Ask A Librarian.
Do this first. Why? Because you need to be signed in to:
Alums: alumni access to online resources happens via the links on library.harvard.edu's page for alums. Alums can still use their HOLLIS accounts to manage requests, save favorites, and personalize results, but HOLLIS's "online access" links will only work if the item is publicly accessible, as is the case with Harvard-digitized or HathiTrust items.
Guest Users: you do not need to sign in to HOLLIS to search the Library Catalog. You will still be able to access all of the bibliographic information about items in our collections. To request items for on-site consultation in a special collections reading room, use the "View in Library" link. For items from our circulating collections, please inquire with your local library's Interlibrary Loan service, or make arrangements with our Privileges Office to consult materials on-site. We also offer fee-based imaging services where copyright allows. For more information, see I'm not a Harvard student. Can I get access to Harvard materials?
To renew items you have checked out as view well current requests, saved items, and other details, use the drop-down menu that appears next to your name once you have signed in.
For more detailed information, see our FAQ on Renewal (Library Materials).
*Items on Harvard’s shelves includes books, journals, newspapers, maps, DVDs, manuscripts, images, archives, and much more. The Library Catalog also searches the full text of Harvard’s archival finding aids, as well as the tables of contents for some books (i.e. individual chapter titles).
Note: the Catalog’s descriptions are maintained by Harvard staff and follow well-established rules for author names, subjects, and other descriptive components. This is why you'll find more reliable filters when you limit your search to Library Catalog.
**"Everything" is NOT actually everything. It searches the Library Catalog as well as a huge index of citations. This index of citations pulls information from a wide variety of data sources. The descriptions are not under the control of Harvard staff, and they follow a huge variety of conventions for description and naming.
Even if Harvard doesn’t currently own an item, we can usually get a copy for you. “How to Get It” will take you through the steps.