Background: Several studies have suggested an association between occupational exposure to solvents and lymphoma risk. However, findings are inconsistent and the role of specific chemicals is not known. Objective: To investigate the role of occupational exposure to organic solvents in the aetiology of B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (B-NHL) and its major subtypes, as well as Hodgkin's lymphoma and T-cell lymphoma. Methods: 2348 lymphoma cases and 2462 controls participated in a case-control study in six European countries. A subset of cases were reviewed by a panel of pathologists to ensure diagnostic consistency. Exposure to solvents was assessed by industrial hygienists and occupational experts based on a detailed occupational questionnaire. Results: Risk of follicular lymphoma significantly increased with three independent metrics of exposure to benzene, toluene and xylene (BTX) (combined p=4×10-7) and to styrene (p=1×10-5), and chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) risk increased with exposure to solvents overall (p=4×10-6), BTX (p=5x10-5), gasoline (p=8×10-5) and other solvents (p=2×10-6). Risk of B-NHL for ever exposure to solvents was not elevated (OR=1.1, 95% CI 1.0 to 1.3), and that for CLL and follicular lymphoma was 1.3 (95% CI 1.1 to 1.6) and 1.3 (95% CI 1.0 to 1.7), respectively. Exposure to benzene accounted, at least partially, for the association observed with CLL risk. Hodgkin's lymphoma and T-cell lymphoma did not show an association with solvent exposure. Conclusion: This analysis of a large European dataset confirms a role of occupational exposure to solvents in the aetiology of B-NHL, and particularly, CLL. It is suggested that benzene is most likely to be implicated, but we cannot exclude the possibility of a role for other solvents in relation to other lymphoma subtypes, such as follicular lymphoma. No association with risk of T-cell lymphoma and Hodgkin's lymphoma was shown.