The collection comprises approximately 100 000 portraits from the 16th to the 20th century, particularly photographs, lithographs and copper engravings. Basel and Switzerland are the focus points of the collection.


Approximately 10 000 portraits of Basel personalities are recorded in the portrait search portal or swisscovery with an image (copyright permitting).

Additional finding aids

The portrait collection of the University Library Basel is recorded in full in two local catalogues:

Die Porträtsammlung der UB Basel ist durch zwei lokale Kataloge vollständig erschlossen:

  • Alphabetical portrait catalogue (card catalogue)
  • Artist catalogue (card catalogue)

In order to make use of these, please contact
✆ +41 (0)61 207 29 93.

[Translate to English:] Benedikt Meyer-Kraus (1813-1889)

Benedikt Meyer-Kraus (1813-1889)

Benedikt Meyer-Kraus (1813-1889) donated approximately 50 000 portraits to the University Library in 1878 after collecting portraits for 50 years. They form the foundation of the current portrait collection.