Google is offering people the chance to download classic books in PDF format to print for free.

For several years, volunteers have been hard at work transcribing out-of-copyright books as text files so that they can be accessed online in a project known as Gutenberg.

Google has been offering people the chance to search and read these books for a while, but this new service puts the text in PDF format, which is ready for printing.

The Books Library project that Google has undertaken has partners including Oxford University, Harvard, Stanford, and the New York Public Library.

Literary material is generally copyrighted for 70 years after an author’s death, so the project means that hundreds of classic books can be made available free of charge.