The second part involves libraries from Wales, England, Scotland, and Ireland
The first one is the Long Room from the The Library of Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland. I saw this library last summer and it knocked my socks off! The photo just does not do it justice! It’s the largest research library in Ireland and its biggest draw is the famous Book of Kells, which is well worth seeing if you make it there!
The Book of Kells, created by Monks in 800
The National Library of Ireland is also found in Dublin and is a reference library (i.e. no borrowing privileges)
The Theology Room at St. Deiniol’s library in Wales is seen below and is considered the largest residential library in the U.K. It has over 250,000 books.
The Glasgow School of Art has the Charles Rennie Macintosh Library in Scotland. Wish I’d seen it while I was there but only had time for a tattoo…ah me, priorities…anyway, the library carries the name of Charles Rennie Macintosh as he was the architect of the school and library. He’s famous for his art nouveau style in art and furniture design.
The Signet Library in Edinburgh, Scotland was visited by King George IV who described the upper library as “the finest drawing room in Europe”.
This is the Duke of Humphrey’s Library at Oxford University in England. It’s the main research library of the University of Oxford and is one of the oldest libraries in Europe (established in 1602, making it 408 years old!).
The Hereford Cathedral Chained Library is an interesting one! The practice of chaining books was the normal practice for reference libraries starting in the Middle Ages until the 18th century. The Chained Library has been around since the 1100’s (making it close to a 1000 years old!).
Next is the John Rylands Library in Manchester, England. It’s a Victorian Gothic building and holds many illuminated manuscripts including a copy of the Gutenberg Bible.
Lastly, we have the Old British Reading Room in the British Museum, London, England. The British Museum is the oldest museum in the world (1753) and features the Rosetta Stone. The Reading Room only opened to the general public for the first time in 2000. The Reading Room sits at the heart of the Great Court and has been used by the likes of Karl Marx, Rudyard Kipling, Virginia Woolf, Oscar Wilde, W. B. Yeats, Thomas Hardy, George Bernard Shaw, and Mahatma Gandhi.
That’s it for this part…next is Europe. That one will take me while!
Thanks again for reading. Please let me know if you’re enjoying this blog or if you know of other libraries you should like me to add!