Culture is at home in Emilia Romagna, as evidenced (also) by its numerous historical libraries. From university libraries, to civic, scientific and ecclesiastical ones, with an estimated heritage of more than twenty-one million documents, libraries of Emilia Romagna are certainly among the most beautiful and rich in all the Italian territory.
One of the primates recognized to Emilia Romagna is also to have the largest number of libraries, if compared with the number of inhabitants. There are numerous librarian poles that are home to the immense cultural heritage of the region, including museums, libraries, archives, film libraries, today linked by rapid electronic networks.
Among these, we have chosen 5 different libraries to which to dedicate a visit and spend some time surrounded by the “great beauty”, to enjoy the smell of the printed paper of the ancient volumes, which are just waiting to be opened and rediscovered.
GAMBALUNGA LIBRARY, Rimini
Founded in 1619 thanks to the generous legacy of Alessandro Gambalunga from Rimini, the library that carries his name still stands in the center of the beautiful Rimini, with a collection of about 300,000 volumes, of which 60,000 are ancient. The walnut shelves positioned in the seventeenth-century rooms create a perfect study and consultation environment, which will make you fall in love with reading in all its expressions!
MALATESTIANA LIBRARY, Cesena
Built in mid-1400 in Cesena, the first civic library in Italy and also in Europe, it’s the only library of monastic origin that has survived to the present day with perfect preservation of the building, as well as its furnishings and ancient volumes. With its 250,000 tomes, the Malatestiana is the perfect legacy of the Franciscan friars, honored by the lord of Cesena Domenico Malatesta (known as Malatesta Novello) with funds for the construction of this stunning library.
Since 2005, the library has become part of UNESCO’s heritage, as recognized among the places that hold the Memory of the World.
SALABORSA LIBRARY, Bologna
More recent origins than the other selected libraries for the Salaborsa of Bologna.
Inaugurated in 2001 within Palazzo d’Accursio, the historic seat of the Municipality of Bologna, it enjoys a splendid view over Piazza del Nettuno.
It’s characterized by being a real covered square, always alive, under which it’s possible to admire the archaeological excavations that retrace the most ancient history of the city.
The excavations, always visible thanks to the transparent floor, can be accessed more closely through free or guided visits, according to the timetable.
Salaborsa is one of the most supplied multimedia libraries of the region, with an always updating catalog.
ESTENSE LIBRARY, Modena
The Este’s library collection was born with the ducal family, and has always followed its events. Originally located in Ferrara, in 1598 the library followed the Este dynasty in the transfer of the capital of the duchy from Ferrara to Modena.
After the unification of Italy, the Estense Library merged with the University Library, which brought an important collection of philosophical, juridical and scientific texts: this is how the current Estense University Library was born, housed today in the Palazzo dei Musei in Modena.
PALATINA LIBRARY, Parma
Inside the imposing Palazzo della Pilotta, right in the heart of Parma, going up the Imperial Stairway, you can access the majestic halls of the Palatina Library.
It was born in 1761 thanks to the Duke Filippo di Borbone, when with a decree he manifested his political will to equip the duchy with a library for public benefit.
The library still boasts a vast bibliographic heritage, divided between the Petitot Gallery, the Salone Maria Luigia, the Sala Dante and the Sala De Rossi.
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