Regulations for use of the Research Reading Room

The Research Reading Room is a joint reading room shared by the Royal Danish Library and the Danish National Archives in Copenhagen. The Research Reading Room is open to researchers and other library users with a documented need to consult the Royal Danish Library’s special reading room collections and/or the collection of reference materials available for on-site use, as well as for all users of the Danish National Archives’ records.

What are you allowed to take with you into the Research Reading Room?

  • You can take your computer and tablet, but no bags or covers or sleeves.
  • You can take pencils, but not pens or the like.
  • You can take your telephone, but it must be set to silent. It is not permitted to hold a conversation or answer your telephone inside the reading room.
  • You can bring a camera, but not a bag or case. (For further information please refer to “Photographing and scanning”, below)
  • You can take books and a pad of paper, along with up to 20 loose sheets of paper.
  • You can bring a glasses case and any lifesaving medicine that you may require.
  • You can take the permitted items in with you provided that they can all fit into a transparent carrier bag.

However, you may not:

  • take outdoor clothing, umbrellas, bags, pencil cases, computer cases or sleeves, or the like.
  • take a scanner.
  • take food, drink, sweets, skin creams or the like.

Borrowing and returning items

  • The Royal Danish Library’s books and other materials reserved for use in the reading room will be issued to you at one of the counters upon presentation of a library card or Danish national insurance card, and must be returned to the same place once you are finished using the reading room for the day.
  • Danish National Archives records reserved for use in the reading room will be issued to you at the library service desk upon presentation of a completed slip stating your name, reservation number and seat number. After you have consulted the records they must be returned to a specific desk once you are finished using the reading room for the day.
  • You are not permitted to take borrowed materials out of the reading room.
  • After 10 days any unused Royal Danish Library materials will no longer be reserved and will be returned to the reading room collection. Loans may be renewed upon request in person. You can borrow up to 10 items at a time.
  • Danish National Archives records are to be returned upon conclusion or expiry of the loan period. Loans can be renewed via Daisy. You can borrow up to 15 items at a time.

Handling of materials

  • In the event that you damage loaned materials you may be liable to pay compensation.
  • You must at all times handle the loaned material with care and with clean, dry hands.
  • It is not permitted to have more than one packet/record on the table at any given time.
  • Do not wet your fingers while consulting the materials.
  • Never write on, underline or mark the loaned materials/records.
  • The pages of the loaned materials must not be folded.
  • You must not affix labels, stickers or the like to the loaned materials.
  • Never use the loaned materials/records as an underlay for writing on top of.
  • You must not alter the sequence of the documents in the packet. The documents must always be put back into the same packet they were issued in.
  • In exceptional cases use of materials/records may be subject to special conditions stipulated by the loaning institution.

Photographing and scanning

  • You are permitted to photograph and scan materials with your own camera – without flash – and to make use of the reading room’s scanners provided a ban on using scanners is not in place. You will be notified of any such ban either when you are given authorisation to access the reading room or when you loan the material.
  • Use of portable scanners is not permitted.
  • The reading room staff can at any given time stop or forbid photographing and scanning in order to ensure that library users have peace in which to work, in order to preserve the condition of the materials, for safety reasons or on other grounds.
  • You must familiarise yourself with all relevant current legislation, including the Danish Archives Act, the Danish Copyright Act and the Data Protection Act (please note, that the wording of the Acts is in Danish).
  • It is your responsibility to correctly and clearly cite the material/records and to indicate that the materials are held in the collections of the Royal Danish Library or the Danish National Archives.

Using the reading room

  • The reading room is a workplace for a large number of people. Therefore users are kindly asked to show consideration at all times and to speak in a low voice when talking to the staff and to one another.
  • It is a requirement that Danish National Archives users be electronically registered by the guard at the security desk prior to entering the reading room. Registration is done using your national insurance card (formerly medical card). You should therefore always bring your national insurance card with you when visiting the reading room. When registering as a reading room user you will also require, besides your national insurance card, a valid photo ID such as your passport, driving licence or the like. Non-Danish users will be issued with a special card by the guard upon presentation of valid photo ID.
  • All users are given a seat number by the guard at the security desk and must use the assigned seat. This seat can be changed by the staff, for example, if there is a need to use particular materials or for security reasons.
  • If you intend to leave your seat for longer than half an hour you must first tidy the table so that another user can make use of it. You must hand in your table number to the guard when you leave the reading room.
  • The reference books in the reading room may only be used on location and may not be removed. However, they can be brought down to the reading room. The books must be returned to the service desk after they have been used.
  • It is not permitted to bring your own or borrowed books or archival records to the floor with the handbook/reference libraries.
  • The guard will monitor users to ensure that materials and records are not removed from the reading room. This is done by inspecting any books, papers etc. you have brought with you pursuant to the Danish Act on carrying out inspection at particular state and state-recognised cultural heritage institutions where the public is granted access to the collections (in Danish).
  • All users are obliged to follow the instructions of staff, along with any applicable regulations.
  • Contravention of these regulations may result in you being excluded and your user rights being revoked.
  • Complaints may be directed via email to the Danish National Archives at, or to the Royal Danish Library at