For the love of libraries! 1

Inspired by a recent radio programme on a station I listen to all the time, and by the amount of books I read myself I decided to initiate another series.

It turns out there are such amazing, breathtaking, groundbraking, new and old, innovative and old-fashioned libraries around the world! Here in Poland the old libraries don’t really encourage you to spend time there – most of the times you cannot simply go between the endless rows of subject-grouped books, touching them, taking them off the shelves and flipping through the pages to see if what you are looking for is actually there. You have to file a note and wait for it to be proceeded (up to 3 days back at my uni), while the books rest somewhere, behind the walls, closed away from the public. The women who work there seem to be harsh and not at all friendly. How I loathe this! Sure, you have to silent there and almost excuse for at all being there.

All that considered – I just love libraries where you feel welcome, can browse though the books, touch them, smell them. And the archtectures that frequently comes as an additional factor for feeling enchanted – that is what actually moves me to the core. So here  they are – amazing libraries around the world.

Old World, old style – Europe

Cambridge University, England – Old Library, St. John’s College

Old Library, St. John’s College, Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK

Oxford Univerity – England

Duke Humfrey’s Library, Bodleian Library
Duke Humfrey’s Library, Bodleian Library, Oxford University, Oxford,duke-of-humphrey_s-library-bodleian-oxford-university-england1Queen’s College Library

Queen’s College Library, Oxford University, Oxford, UK

Codrington Library, All Soul’s College

Codrington Library, All Soul’s College, Oxford University, Oxford,

The Trinity College Library, aka “The Long Room,” Dublin, Ireland

The Trinity College Library, aka “The Long Room,” Dublin, Ireland

The University of Coimbra General Library, Coimbra, Portugal

The University of Coimbra General Library, Coimbra, Portugal

Angelica Library, Rome, Italy

Angelica Library, Rome, Italy

National Library, Site Richelieu, Paris, France

National Library, Site Richelieu, Paris, France

Rijksmuseum Research Library, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Rijksmuseum Research Library, Amsterdam

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8 Responses to For the love of libraries! 1

  1. So sad to think of all that knowledge, and pleasure, locked away from students and other citizens of your homeland, Layyla – lets hope those unsmiling guardians of the shelves have done just that, and one day soon those shelves, groaning with books, will be open to all again.

    Beautiful selection of some of the world’s great library buildings 🙂

    • layyla says:

      Thank you for a kind answer, I’m glad you like the selection. And as for our libraries – it is a strange thing they (the Polish administrators of libraries) are doing just the reverse of what the international trend is – instead of bringing the knowledge out to those willing to devour it, they shut it behind locked doors. My friend, a librarian working in a public library, thus one considered to be a “scientific library”, just recently told me: “Soon we will be receiving tours of visitors to see these peculiar beahaviour (with locking the books away) – we will be the only country in the world to do that!” This is very sad, but very true indeed.

  2. What a lovely theme 🙂

  3. Margaret says:

    Love these photos. The carved bookshelves are incredible. I’ve spent some time in Polish libraries, and I always wished I could wander the stacks instead of having to hand in the slip of paper, although some of the reading rooms are very nice!

  4. Pingback: For the love of libraries! 2 | Layyla over the rooftops of the world

  5. Pingback: For the love of libraries! 3 | Layyla over the rooftops of the world

  6. Pingback: For the love of libraries! 4 | Layyla over the rooftops of the world

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