A library is a storehouse for sources of information as well as other related sources, systematically organized and maintained for communal reference or borrowing. A library may provide digital or physical material access while it can be a built room, a virtual space, or even both. The collections in a library may be of different formats such as books, newspapers, prints, maps, periodicals, manuscripts, films, microforms, videotapes, CDs, e-books, databases, and audiobooks among others. With the growing importance of access to information, libraries have become of great significance. The most famous libraries in the world include the following:
Library of Congress, Washington D.C
It is the United States’ national Library as well as the oldest cultural institution within the U.S. It is as well the world’s largest library and comprise of 3 different buildings. Even though open for the public, only important government officials like members of congress may check out information sources. The collection includes more than 32 million books, over 61 million manuscripts, the only vellum copy of the Gutenberg Bible, declaration of independence’s rough draft among others.
The British Library
Set up in the year 1973, the British Library is one among the world’s greatest. It has a PACCAR Gallery for living as well as a words’ workshop. At the theme exhibitions, images and sounds provide different programs and displays. These sounds and images have a huge collection of the world’s stamps that are displayed for visitors. The library offers events such as discussions and music as well.
The Bodleian Library
It is Oxford University’s research library. One of the reasons as to why it is very famous is that it is a copyright library (has a right to all books published within the U.K. Over 11 million items are present within the library including 4 copies of the Magna Carta, Shakespeare’s First Folio, and a Gutenberg Bible. It is among European’s oldest libraries and consists of two buildings including the Radcliffe Camera.
Boston Public Library
It was established in 1848 funded by the public and has developed to hold 22 million items today becoming United States’ 2nd largest library. Its McKim building built in 1895 contains several beautiful murals. The Bates Hall, which has a grand coffered ceiling, is the McKim building’s main room. It holds more than 1.7 million rotaries with numerous medieval manuscripts, colonial Boston records, early Shakespeare including a First Folio, colonial Boston records, among other collections.
Library of Alexandria, Egypt
It was among the world’s seven wonders as well as the largest in antiquity. The library was rebuilt in 2002 costing $220 million. It is a cultural center while it has a planetarium, art galleries, a manuscript restoration, a conference center, museum, and libraries for adults, the blind and children.
Jay Walker’s Private Library
An American entrepreneur, as well as an inventor, Jay Walker, utilized his funds to come up with a famous private library. The library is in his home and has over 50,000 books, which include most early titles as well as books that are worthy to place it at the most premier level of the world’s greatest museums. The library is not open for the public.