Boston Public Library

Boston Public Library

700 Boylston St (at Dartmouth St), Boston, MA 02116, United States
Hours:
Closed until 9:00am tomorrow (Show more)
  • Mon
    • 9:00 AM–9:00 PM
  • Tue, Thu
    • 9:00 AM–9:00 PM
  • Wed
    • 9:00 AM–9:00 PM
  • Fri–Sat
    • 9:00 AM–5:00 PM
  • Sun
    • 1:00 PM–5:00 PM
Wi-Fi:
Yes
Outdoor Seating:
Yes

Explore the Boston Public Library. Learn about exhibitions, author talks, and other special programs. Reserve your books online; download eBooks, audiobooks, and music; and enjoy our stunning collection of images on Flickr. Free to all. And, while you are here, be sure to leave tip... (See all)

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110 Tips

People talk about:

  • "The McKim Building courtyard and Bates Hall are two of my..." (6 tips)
  • "... the library -- try the Map Room Cafe for a quick bite or the Courtyard..." (4 tips)
  • "The Courtyard Restaurant does a delicious lunch." (4 tips)
  • HISTORY

    The library was founded in 1848 by an act of the Massachusetts legislature and first opened in 1854 in a former schoolhouse located on Mason Street. It moved here to its current building in 1895.

    HISTORY · April 23, 2010
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  • Boston Public Library

    If you live in the state of Massachusetts, you can have a Boston Public Library card. Why not stop in today to sign up? Read more

    Boston Public Library · July 12, 2011
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  • Boston Public Library

    Bates Hall is named for the Library’s first great benefactor - Joshua Bates (1788-1864). It is 218 long, 42 feet wide, and 50 feet high, to the crown of its barrel vaulted ceiling.

    Boston Public Library · August 16, 2011
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  • Boston Public Library

    Free art & architecture tours are offered at the Central Library in Copley Square four times each week. They last about an hour. Read more

    Boston Public Library · July 11, 2011
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  • Anna L.

    Go to the fountain open area in the library and check out the marble sculptures and the art galleries in the library.

    Anna Lam · May 13, 2010
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  • Frank T.

    Have coffee at the Map Room cafe and sit in the courtyard on one of these nice Spring days. You can even work there since they have pervasive wireless. Kinda like going to Florence, Italy. Read more

    Frank Thompson · March 10, 2010
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  • Boston Public Library

    Bates Hall is 218 long, 42 feet wide, and 50 feet high, to the crown of its barrel vaulted ceiling.

    Boston Public Library · October 11, 2011
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  • Boston Public Library

    There are two places to eat inside the library -- try the Map Room Cafe for a quick bite or the Courtyard Restaurant for a lovely lunch or afternoon tea. Read more

    Boston Public Library · July 22, 2011
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  • Fiat V.

    Take time and walk the halls of BPL. You'll observe the patrons sitting/reading/internetting inside the Bates Hall. Gander through the current exhibit in the lobby and enjoy the fine architecture.

    Fiat V · December 7, 2010
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  • Claude K.

    Check out the old section. It's some of the best architecture in the city.

    Claude Keswani · January 10, 2010
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  • Boston Public Library

    Check the Boylston Street side of the BPL for new food trucks starting in mid-July.

    Boston Public Library · July 12, 2011
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  • Boston Public Library

    Founded in 1848, by an act of the Great and General Court of Massachusetts, the Boston Public Library (BPL) was the first large free municipal library in the United States. Read more

    Boston Public Library · July 15, 2011
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  • Bruce C.

    6/2010 - Check out the cool vintage travel posters exhibit.

    Bruce C · June 10, 2010
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  • Boston Public Library

    This magnificent reading room is named for the Boston Public Library’s first great benefactor -- Joshua Bates (1788-1864).

    Boston Public Library · October 11, 2011
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  • Boston Public Library

    There are now four self check-out stations in the library -- three at the Boylston Street entrance and one at the Dartmouth Street entrance. Use self check-out for everything except DVDs and videotape

    Boston Public Library · July 19, 2011
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  • Beth G.

    Take a free tour - the building's architecture is beautiful Read more

    Beth Gallaway · January 14, 2010
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  • Boston Public Library

    Stop in for a free, 12:30pm concert in the BPL courtyard every Friday in June, July, and August 2013. Read more

    Boston Public Library · May 22, 2013
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  • Boston Public Library

    Stop in and see the stunning Sargent Murals on the third floor of the McKim Building, the one that faces Dartmouth Street.

    Boston Public Library · February 13, 2012
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  • Boston Public Library

    The BPL's Central Library in Copley Square is host to a Hubway station. You can borrow a book and a bike here in Copley Square.

    Boston Public Library · August 11, 2011
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  • Amelia S.

    because I just can't bring myself to buy a book when there are 1000s of free ones across the street from work.

    Amelia Sutton · March 22, 2010
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  • Jake S.

    Check out one of the rotating exhibits, they're very interesting and change often.

    Jake Smith · March 28, 2013
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  • CityRover M.

    The Boston Public Library (1854) was the first free public library established in the country. Read more

    CityRover Media · January 5, 2011
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  • Alex Z.

    Grab a seat anywhere and enjoy this oasis. Concerts during lunch hour on Fridays in the summer.

    Alex Zinn · August 2, 2012
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  • City of Boston

    The Boston Public Library was the first to have a children's room. Grab your kids and come check it out.

    City of Boston · April 10, 2012
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  • BU FYI Student Blog

    The courtyard at the BPL is a great place to get work done!

    BU FYI Student Blog · March 7, 2012
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  • Boston Public Library

    Did you know? All Boston Public Library locations are free, wireless hotspots.

    Boston Public Library · February 10, 2012
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  • Boston Public Library

    Talented authors are coming to Boston Public Library locations in the new year. Visit http://bpl.org/authors for details. Read more

    Boston Public Library · December 27, 2011
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  • Anthony V.

    The exquisite original McKim, Mead and White building received a modernist, referential extension by Phillip Johnson, architect of the famed Glass House and chippendale Sony Center in NYC.

    Anthony V · December 18, 2011
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  • Greg B.

    Be sure to finish up your food and drink before you enter the library or make sure you make it obvious to the security guard you're headed for the Courtyard...serious people them folk are.

    Greg Bodenlos · October 18, 2011
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  • Boston Public Library

    Kindle eBook users can now request and download titles from the Boston Public Library's OverDrive collection. Free to all. Read more

    Boston Public Library · September 22, 2011
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  • Boston Public Library

    Try out the library's new catalog. Read reviews, reserve books and DVDs, and have them sent to the BPL location of your choice. Read more

    Boston Public Library · August 1, 2011
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  • Tenley W.

    The courtyard is a hidden oasis in the middle of the city.

    Tenley Wilson · May 26, 2011
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  • Aiden C.

    Lots of homeless people. Nice study spot otherwise.

    Aiden Cwynar · October 18, 2010
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  • Boston Public Library

    Stop in to see the new printmaking exhibition "reThink INK" open through July 31, 2012. The exhibition is so large, it's installed in three spots around the building. Read more

    Boston Public Library · April 14, 2012
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  • Michael C.

    The Courtyard Restaurant does a delicious lunch.

    Michael Colford · February 9, 2012
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  • Boston Public Library

    Author, author! Check out the list of authors coming to the BPL for free author talks. Read more

    Boston Public Library · February 1, 2012
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  • Boston Public Library

    There are two free exhibitions in the BPL's Leventhal Map Center open thru March 12 -- "Treasures" and "Unconventional Maps." Stop in any time the library is open.

    Boston Public Library · January 17, 2012
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  • Boston Public Library

    Free, hour-long art & architecture tours of the library are offered 7 days a week. Read more

    Boston Public Library · November 14, 2011
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  • Alwyn V.

    A sanctuary in the heart of the city. Love this place! Read more

    Alwyn Velasquez · August 8, 2011
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  • The Feast

    Gorgeous courtyard. Not only do they have free events (including movie screenings) this is also an amazing spot to get hitched. Read more

    The Feast · June 8, 2011
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  • AllenGerritsen

    Take a picture of a book in the library and tweet it to us (@allengerritsen) to win a prize!

    AllenGerritsen · February 9, 2011
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  • Kenneth M.

    Amazing string player in the courtyard so peaceful. Beautiful day to do work.

    Kenneth Muti · June 18, 2010
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  • Boston Public Library

    Visit the exhibition "Made in Boston" in the library's Leventhal Map Center through March . Read more

    Boston Public Library · December 1, 2013
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  • Magda C.

    One of the most beautiful places in Boston!

    Magda Cunha · September 21, 2013
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  • Bethany L.

    A great spot for a date, beautiful courtyard

    Bethany Longoria · July 7, 2013
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  • Staci M.

    If you visit on a weekend when most schools are having finals, dont expect to find a seat to study/read anywhere in the McKim building.

    Staci Morrison · December 15, 2012
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  • Jamila W.

    Watch out for the mice!

    Jamila Wilson · September 19, 2012
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  • Boston Public Library

    Stop in to see the free exhibition "Forgotten Chapters of Boston's Literary History" through July 30. Read more

    Boston Public Library · March 31, 2012
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  • The Next Great Generation (Boston)

    If studying is your objective, grab a seat in the McKim Building and join the other students furiously typing papers on their laptops or reading woolly mammoth-sized test prep books. Read more

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  • Boston Public Library

    Stop in to see two new exhibitions: "From Pen to Print" in the Rare Books Lobby and "American Master Prints 1900-1960" in the Wiggin Gallery. Always free to all.

    Boston Public Library · December 6, 2011
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