Students who wants to Study Literature can agree that Europe as a continent holds great historical, socio-political significance. Some of the earliest, most influential literature was written in the continent of Europe, by writers of European origin. Some of the greatest minds in literature (yes, including Shakespeare!) were born in Europe. The continent is also home to the best and oldest universities in the world.

Some of these universities have a legacy of centuries and continue to serve the best education to academically bright and relevant students from around the world. For an aspiring student of literature, Europe would be a dream location to pursue a higher degree.

Here are some Top European Universities to Study Literature:

1. University of Oxford, United Kingdom 

Being the second oldest world university that operates to this day, University of Oxford is quite a marvel. It was established in the 11th century and has been home to some of the most prominent names in literature, including Lewis Carroll, Oscar Wilde, J.R.R. Tolkien, Samuel Johnson, P.B. Shelley, John Donne, T.S. Eliot, W.H. Auden, among many other well-known personalities. University of Oxford ranks #1 in Europe’s top universities for Literature. As it is the most prestigious university for literature, admission is insanely competitive here. The university offers programs in undergraduate, graduate, and distance learning for students from around the world.

2. Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

Trinity College is the 28th best college in the world for studying English Language and Literature according to QS World University Rankings. Located in Dublin, the capital city of the Republic of Ireland, this is a prestigious research university. The focus of this university is offering education in small groups to give much-deserved personal attention to students. The goal is to broaden the scope of development of subject-based and specific skills in students.

The courses in literature offered by this university are planned to help students trace and understand the development of literature’s in English over different periods in history. Students from this university learn to develop independent critical thought and articulation skills. The university also hosts extra activities like meetings, symposium, guest lectures for students to participate in.

3. Leiden University, Netherlands

Located in the beautiful European country, Netherlands, Leiden University offers Literary Studies program at Bachelor’s and master’s level for native and non-native students. The course design is such that students follow a comparative perspective on literature and cultures. The programs at Leiden University are taught by international scholars who encourage students to follow interactive, investigative, and critical approaches towards all topics. This university is the 71st best location to study literature in the world. This university also offers relative flexibility to students when it comes to choosing electives and minor subjects. As a student, you can choose subjects from disciplines other than Literature to go with your major.

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4. University of Glasgow, United Kingdom

Standing at world rank 86 for the most sought-after university to Study literature, the University of Glasgow is a prestigious five-and-a-half-century-old educational institution based in the UK, offering commendable education in diverse fields, including literature.  This institution has consistently been in the world’s top 100 higher education institutions. Along with quality education, students get exposure to a diverse culture at the university and a host of career-related as well as academic opportunities.

Students get many amazing internship opportunities with some of the best institutions in the world. It currently has 28,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students enrolled from over 140 countries in the world. The university also has an excellent international student support team, helping international students every step of the way.

5. University of St. Andrews, Scotland

With a world ranking of 201 for the best university for studying literature, this university has some amazing facilities to offer to its students. University of St. Andrews was founded in 1413 in the town of St. Andrews in Scotland. It was the first official university in the country.

It offers an intellectually-stimulating environment for scholars from around the world and currently enrolls more than 7,200 students. The curriculum here covers a wide range of literature to broaden historical perspectives, cultural awareness, and critical skills in students. It then prepares the students to come up with original ideas of meaningful research in the subject. As a student, you will be studying a lot of fiction, poetry, and drama to understand and analyze cultures. With a 10:1 student-teacher ratio, every student gets attention at a personal level. The university also opens up a lot of internship and research opportunities for students.


While these are the current top names of the best European universities to study Literature in, there are also plenty of more academic institutions in Europe that also offer amazing courses to Study Literature. As an aspiring student, regard the world rankings but do your research in finding out what university will best suit you personally. Having said that, the mentioned names are of the greatest universities in the world that will surely provide you with the best intellectually-pushing environment that you need to pursue your degree in Literature.