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Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution

exterior stone building with columns

BRLSI founded 1824

  1. Membership open to 500 subscribing members (new members welcome, rates available on request)


The Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution (BRLSI) was founded in 1824 and was opened to members in 1825, providing a museum, library and reading room, lecture hall and botanical garden. The BRLSI moved to its present building in 1932, but fell into rapid decline with a dwindling membership following requisition of its building by the Admiralty during World War II. The BRLSI was successfully relaunched in 1993 and is currently establishing itself as an educational resource in the area.


One important area of activity for the relaunched BRLSI is the establishment of a library and research facility. The BRLSI's antiquarian library contains over 7,000 volumes, notably the Jenyns and Broome natural history libraries. Smaller collections cover local history, theology, travel and government. The Institution's archives contain bound volumes of letters from eminent naturalists and scientists, including Charles Darwin, Sir Joseph Hooker and Professor J.S. Henslow.


Grade I listed Greek Revival building designed by John Pinch the Younger in 1830 located in Queen Square, the finest Georgian square in Bath, originally designed by John Wood the Elder and built between 1728 and 1735.



Registered charity no 304477