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African and Middle Eastern Reading Room (African and Middle Eastern Division)

Notice: Beginning April 4, 2022, the African and Middle Eastern Reading Room will welcome researchers between the hours of 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday. Appointments are optional, but encouraged to serve you best, ensure requested African and Middle Eastern collection items are accessible onsite during your visit, and optimize your time at the Library. Request a research appointment here.

About the Division

About the Collections:

Research and Reference:

Digital Resources:



Ask A Librarian
Want to ask our reference staff a question about the African and Middle Eastern collections?

AMED offers group briefings and research orientations onsite and online. We request that appointments be made at least 3 weeks in advance. Please contact AMED via Ask a Librarian.

From left: 18th century Middle East book binding; The Washington Haggadah; Kente Cloth
From left: 18th century Middle East book binding;The Washington Haggadah;
Kente Cloth

Of Special Interest:

  • Reading Room Collection Display: "Religious and Cultural Diversity in Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia" (More information)

African Section:

Hebraic Section:

Near East Section:

Friends Groups:

101 Independence Ave. SE
Thomas Jefferson Building, LJ 229
Washington, D.C. 20540-4820
2nd Floor Jefferson Building
View Directions

Monday - Friday: 8:30am - 5:00pm
Closed Saturdays, Sundays &
Federal Holidays External Link

Other Reader Services:

Overseas Offices:

The African & Middle Eastern Reading Room is the primary public access point for materials housed in the the African and Middle Eastern Division (AMED) which include a variety of vernacular scripts, such as Amharic, Arabic, Armenian, Georgian, Hebrew, Persian, Turkish, and Yiddish. Covering 77 countries from Morocco to Southern Africa to the Central Asian republics of the former Soviet Union, the division's three sections--African, Hebraic, and Near East--offer in-depth reference assistance, provide substantive briefings on a wide range of subjects relating to these languages and cultures, produce guides to the Library's vast resources and cooperate in developing and preserving the Division's unparalleled collections.
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  The Library of Congress >> Researchers
  April 2, 2024
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