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Maps: Online maps

Images of maps from the Bodleian collections

Looking for a map image you can use? You can search through thousands of images from the Bodleian's collections on our image site, Digital Bodleian, including hundreds of maps, and download copies for your own use.

If you can't find the image you need there, maps from our collections can be photographed by our Imaging Services department. They also handle permissions if you want to publish the image. The process takes a few weeks.

 

Databases

These are some useful sources for maps and map data. Some of these are publicly available, and others require you to have a single sign on (SSO). 

Digimap (SSO required) is an excellent source of mapping data for Great Britain. It includes Ordnance Survey maps both historical and modern, geological maps, marine data, and the LIDAR digital elevation model. You can view maps online and download them to customise, annotate and print. You can also download spatial data to use in local GIS, CAD or image processing software. 

UKBORDERS is a useful site for UK administrative mapping including census and electoral districts. You can download data to use in a GIS.

Global base map data is available from: Natural EarthSRTMNASA Earth ObservatoryUSGS Land Cover Institute.

As well as sites with downloadable maps and data, there are some useful online databases that give access to geographical information, including:

Oxfordshire History Centre has online images of maps, pictures and historical records including census and military records relating to Oxfordshire.

Wiley Digital Archive (SSO required) gives access to collections of the Royal Geographical Society, including part of their map collection. The archive also contains manuscripts, correspondence, reports, conference papers, photographs, surveys, data and ephemera relating to geography and the history of exploration, all presented as fully searchable digital images.

The Climate Atlas of Canada combines maps showing climate change with Indigenous knowledges, community-based research including updates on recent action.

You can find map databases using the Databases link on SOLO front page, and searching by subject for maps.

Map image searching: where else to look

There are many map images freely available online, including historical maps. These are some of the most useful collections:

The David Rumsey Historical Map Collection has over 100,000 map images dating back to the mid-sixteenth century; it's international and is particularly strong in material relating to the Americas.

The Perry-Castañeda collection at the University of Texas at Austin is excellent for twentieth century topographical mapping as well as general maps showing a whole country. The site has been archived since 2021.

The National Library of Scotland has an exceptional range of British mapping online (including England and Wales as well as Scotland).

The British Library's Images Online site contains many maps from their collection.

The Gallica site hosted by the Bibliotheque Nationale de France holds millions of documents from the BNF and other institutions in France, freely available to view or download.

The National Library of Australia has a remarkable collection of digital images of maps (and other resources) available. 

The Royal Geographical Society's Picture Library contains hundreds of maps and related images.