Painting of our founder, Henry Sotheran

A Long History

Founded in York in 1761, established in London in 1815, Henry Sotheran Limited has a long and distinguished history.

For over 250 years we have been offering unsurpassed opportunities to collectors and enthusiasts, from the purchase of the libraries of Laurence Sterne in 1768, and Charles Dickens in 1870; the complete stock and copyright of the ornithologist and publisher John Gould; to the successful bid in 1980 for the final draft manuscript of Gilbert White's Natural History of Selbourne, bought on behalf of the Gilbert White Museum.

The great American collector of Shakespeare, H.C. Folger, acquired much of his collection, including the Halliwell-Phillipps library, through Sotheran's, and we were agents in the purchase of the world-famous Althorp Library from Earl Spencer for the John Rylands Library in 1892.

Eye-catching Sotheran's by night Throughout our history, we have prided ourselves on the quality and condition of our books, and our friendly service.

Our premises just off Piccadilly in the heart of London's West End are spacious and elegantly appointed, and we welcome regular clients and passers-by alike to wander in and browse our stock in a relaxing and convivial atmosphere.

Over 250 Years in business

In 2011, Henry Sotheran Ltd. celebrated 250 years in business with the publication of our own history — Bookmen: London. 250 Years of Sotheran Bookselling by Victor Gray. 

2016 saw us celebrate 200 years of bookselling in London.

Up to date

You can find our most recent news on our blog site, and on Facebook or Twitter. Look out for fascinating photos on Instagram. And you can subscribe to our monthly email Newsletters for news of our latest catalogues, events and exhibitions.

Please follow this link for a Virtual Tour of the shop, or click on the arrow below.

(it's a little out of date since our recent refurbishment but will be updated soon…)