Ebook Collections: Literature Online (LION)

This guide highlights a range of ebook collections, giving details on the content of the collections, and how to use them

Literature Online Link

If you are off-campus you will need to login.  

  • Click the link Login through your library or institution
  • When asked to select your region, select United Kingdon (UK Access Management Federation for Education and Research)
  • From the dropdown menu of Institutions, scroll down and select University of St Andrews, then click Login
  • This takes you to the University of St Andrews SSO page, enter your username and password

Literature Online (LION)


Literature Online (LION) is an online resource for the study and teaching of literature in English. It is a fully integrated service that combines the texts of over 355,000 literary works with a vast library of key criticism and reference resources. Literature Online’s collection of  poetry, prose,  drama, criticism and reference resources, including an ever-growing library of full-text journals and author biographies, which helps to keep you up to date on the latest research into every aspect of literary and linguistic study.

 The University of St Andrews Library subscribes to the Core Collection and MLA, more information about each of these can be found below.


NB: The information given in this guide is based on the Proquest Literature Online interface.

Literature Online (LION) - Core Collection

The Literature Online Core Collection includes:

  • More than 343,000 works of English, American, African American and Canadian poetry from the eighth century to the present day
  • More than 5,000 works of English and American drama from 1280 to 1915
  • More than 2,000 works of English and American prose from 1500 to 1914
  • The full text of over 350 literature journals
  • All 38 of Shakespeare's plays in dramatised audio recordings
  • Nearly 900 Poets on Screen filmed readings
  • More than 175 volumes from the Companions to Literature series from Cambridge University Press
  • Over 880,000 records of articles, monographs and dissertations in the Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature from 1920 onward
  • Seventeen leading literary reference work
  • The King James Bible
  • Literature Online biographies for 4,100 of the most widely studied authors.
  • Knowledge Notes - student guides
  • Penguin Classics Introductions

Literature Online (LION) - MLA International Bibliography

MLA International Bibliography:

(MLAIB) is a leading annual index of books and articles on modern languages and literatures, linguistics, and folklore, which has been published in print form since 1926. The electronic edition covers the Bibliography's entire print run, and comprises more than 2 million records, with more than 66,000 new records added each year. Accessing the MLAIB via the Literature Online interface allows users to cross-search the MLAIB with ABELL and Literature Online's entire full-text library.

Logging-in to Literature Online (LION)

If you are on-campus you won't need to login to access resources.


If you are off-campus you will need to login.  When you try to access Literature Online you will need to:

  • Click the link "Login through your library or institution;
  • When asked to select your region, select United Kingdom (UK Access Management Federation for Education and Research)
  • From the dropdown menu of Institutions, scroll down and select University of St Andrews, then click Login
  • This takes you to the University of St Andrews SSO page, enter your username and password.

Finding Resources on Literature Online (LION)

You can access Literature Online using this link.

Literature Online has a number of search options which are available from the homepage 

Picture of search screen

Author search - as well as providing biographical information in the Author search, Literature Online also highlights any full-text works by the author which are available in Literature Online with a book icon 

Texts search - use this to find works of poetry, prose or drama using the search functions, or browse by year.  Some texts will be available as full-text documents, others may just include an introduction to the text, this is often the case for 20th century works.  The Texts search also allows you to view video and audio files, including videos of 20th century poets reading their own and other poets' works, and audio recording of Shakespeare plays.

Criticism search - you can produce a list of material written about an author or their works, including references to articles, monographs and dissertations and related entries in major reference works and relevant websites.

When you search for criticism material, Literature Online lists information available in the MRHA's ABELL (Annual Bibliography of English Language Literature) and MLA International bibliography .

Not all the results in Criticism Search are full text.  Where full-text is available it will be indicated with a Full-text icon 

When there is a citation only this is indicated with a citation icon  if the University doesn't have access, you can request the item using the Inter-Library Loans Service

Reference search - allows you to search a range of reference sources including Dictionaries, Encyclopedias, Companions,Biographies and Bibliographies.  To aid you understanding of literary works you'll also find the Introduction from every title in the Penguin Classics collection, and a series of Knowledge Notes student guides.


Downloading, Printing and using Mobile devices

You can Download or Print resources from Literature Online for your own use.  Many files are available as PDF files and can easily be printed or saved.  

Where there is full-text, but no PDF, you can use the Print Icon  to print the file, but you can't save these.  Instead you can use the Save to My Archive option  more information on this feature can be found in the Literature Online Archive box below.

The Proquest platform for Literature Online is designed for use with mobile devices.  PDF files can be downloaded to your device, and you should be able to read all other files on a range of mobile devices.

Literature Online - My Archive

Picture of My Archive button

Creating an archive

If you use Literature Online frequently, or want to save files you can create your own Archive account.  Select the My Archive icon at the top of the Literature Online page.

You will need to choose the option to Create an account 

Picture of New User button

Complete the new profile form and click Submit.  NB: your username must be at least 5 characters long:

Picture of New Profile screen view

Saving items to the archive

When you find a resource on Literature Online (LION) which you would like to save to your archive, select the Save to My Archive option at the top of the page Picture of Save to My Archive button


Accessing your archive

To access items in your archive choose the My Archive option at the top right of the page on Literature Online (LION) 

Picture of Saved Citations screen


To open the a document in the archive click the title in blue.

Chat with us

Need help? Chat to Library Staff, Monday - Friday, 9.00-17.00 using the box below.  When "Chat with us" is unavailable email library@st-andrews.ac.uk with your question.