Conducting Research


Use the HOLLIS Catalogs to search for more than 16 million books and other materials available at Harvard libraries, including the Berenson Library. Two search interfaces are available: HOLLIS, the newer discovery tool, and HOLLIS Classic, the older public catalog. Learn about the differences between the two versions here. Note that only searches in HOLLIS incorporate images from VIA and archival finding aids from OASIS. 

LibX, Harvard Library edition

Use the LibX browser toolbar add-on to quickly search the HOLLIS Catalog and other search tools from within your browser. LibX allows you to select text on a web page and right-click for a menu of search otions.

E-Research @ Harvard Libraries

This site provides access to a wide variety of online information sources, including research databases and collections, journal indexes, the full text of many scholarly journals, and much more. You must be on the Berenson Library or I Tatti network or have an active Harvard ID and PIN to access most licensed resources.

For e-resources of specific interest to Renaissance studies, use Rinascimento, a cross-disciplinary selection compiled by Berenson Library staff of the most relevant and important e-resources and e-journals available through Harvard Library and elsewhere on the web. 


Use VIA, a growing online union catalog documenting the arts, material culture, and social history, to find images at the Berenson Library, I Tatti, and other Harvard repositories and museums. VIA contains descriptive records and images representing paintings, sculpture, photography, drawings, prints, architecture, decorative arts, trade cards, rubbings, theater designs, maps and plans.

See more on what's available in VIA from the Berenson Library under Fototeca / Photograph Archive.


OASIS provides centralized access to a growing percentage of finding aids for archival and manuscript collections at Harvard. These finding aids are detailed descriptions of collections that contain a wide variety of materials, including letters, diaries, photographs, drawings, printed material, and objects.

See more on what's available in OASIS from the Berenson Library under Manuscripts and Archives.

IRIS Consortium of Florentine Area Art History and Humanities Libraries

In addition to HOLLIS and other Harvard Library catalogs, many of the Biblioteca Berenson’s holdings appear in the Florentine union catalog of IRIS, of which I Tatti was a founding member in 1993. Researchers interested in the holdings of the local member repositories are encouraged to search this catalog. The Berenson Library’s bibliographic records only are updated in the IRIS catalog through exports from the Harvard Library system on a monthly schedule. For the most up-to-date information on new accessions, specific holdings data, and items’ availability, as well as for information on most non-print materials like images and manuscripts, users are advised to begin with HOLLIS