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Images and permissions

The Folger’s Imaging team creates high-quality digital images of books, manuscripts, and art in the Library’s collections. As we photograph items, we make the images available in our digital collections.

Contact us

Folger Shakespeare Library
201 East Capitol Street, SE
Washington, DC 20003-1004

Requesting new images

Please check our digital collections to see if what you want has already been digitized. For new photography, please use these instructions and our order form.

If you have further questions or need assistance, please contact us at and we can discuss options with you.

Image attribution

We do not require image attribution, but we kindly request that you provide, at minimum, the “Source Call Number” with the signature, folio, or page number, and/or the “Digital Image File Name” for the image, along with the name of the institution. This helps your audience identify the source of the image.

Example of attribution with Source Call Number, page number, and Digital Image File Name:

STC 4863.5, page 254, image 063906, Folger Shakespeare Library.

Depending on your preferred citation style, you may also wish to use an expanded citation with attribution, as in this example:

Speed, John. Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine (London: [T. Snodham], 1616), plate after page 141: Map of Dublin.  Call #: STC 23044. Image: 31091. Folger Shakespeare Library.

Permission to use images

Every item in our digital collections has a Rights section with copyright information. We do not charge permission or publication fees for images released under public domain or a CC0 license.

If a copyright holder other than “Folger Shakespeare Library” is listed in the Rights section with an image, then we cannot grant permission for that image’s reuse. You will need to contact the copyright holder directly to request permission for reuse.

For permission to reuse any event photography where the Folger Shakespeare Library is the copyright holder, please contact This includes any theatre photography.

If your publisher requires a formal letter of permission, please contact us at

If you photographed items in our collection that are not under copyright, you are free to reuse those images. See our Reading Room Camera Policy.

Permission to quote text

To request permission to publish text beyond the scope of the Creative Commons license (explained in our Copyright Policy), please contact us at

No permission is required to quote excerpts or publish transcriptions from items in the collection that are not under copyright.

Permission to use website content

The Folger licenses most content on under a Creative Commons license. For information on this license, please see our Copyright policy.

Permission for on-site filming

Please contact Garland Scott, Head of External Relations, at (202) 675-0342 or

About our imaging equipment

For books and bound manuscripts, we use a conservation copy stand, made for us by Manfred Mayer in Graz, Austria, and a Kaiser RSP 2motion copy stand, each with a Digital Transitions RCam reprographic camera and a P65+ camera back controlled by Phase One’s Capture One software.