Where to Read Classic Books for Free

There’s no such thing as free lunch, but luckily you can read many of the greatest books mankind has produced for free online. Here is a list with links to online resources for reading many of the classic works found in great books sets, like the Harvard Classics and the Great Books of the Western World.

  • Americanliterature.com: Though the name suggests only American works are included, that’s far from the case. This site includes classic literature from all over the world. Browse their free eBooks here.
  • Open Library: With a mission to provide reading free to everyone, the Open Library organization includes a great fraction of the St. John’s College Great Books Program. Browse their list of (mostly) scanned books here.
  • Project Gutenberg: With thousands of titles available, Project Gutenberg is one of the best resources for reading great books online. They have collected two “bookshelves” that are great resources for studying the classics.
  • GBWW eBook collection on reddit: Compiled meticulously by Detron Phillips, this resource contains the vast majority of works from the Great Books of the Western World set in an eBook-friendly format. This repository is found here.
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