Libraries: From History to Future Perspectives

Libraries: From History to Future Perspectives

The invention of Johann Gutenberg that is known as the book printing machine changed the world in 1455. Information began to spread in the form of printed books. A new technological leap has taken place relatively recently and e-books are now available for purchase. Not only the books themselves, but also the ways in which they are read and stored are changing now. Therefore, it is important to understand and anticipate how the libraries should evolve.

Ancient Times

In ancient Egypt, rolls of papyrus with religious and political content were originally kept in temples. It is believed that there were also storages near the Pharaoh’s palace and near the schools. Nearly 30 thousand clay tablets with dental Notes from 7thcentury BC were found in the capital of Assyria, Nineveh. It was called the Ashurbanipal Library. The written parchment was used in the ancient Greece and they were easier to store. Therefore, in the 7th century BC, the establishment of public and private libraries began. In ancient Rome, there were 28 public libraries, they allowed the manuscripts to be borrowed and read at home.

The most famous library of the ancient time was in Alexandria. It was one of the seven wonders of the world, and it was built in the 3rd century BC. Over 700 thousand books and texts have been collected in this library. For the first time in the history a catalog of protected manuscripts was invented, the papers of prose and poetry were grouped separately. The library burned down in 47 years BC.

The Middle Ages

The books that were handwritten by monks were so rare and expensive that in the Middle Ages they were chained to special consoles in libraries of monasteries or churches. At that time, many scientific and fictional books were stored in Arabic libraries, while many of the monastic libraries in Europe were burned down or otherwise destroyed. However, the situation began to change during the Renaissance. Libraries at Bologna, Sorbonne, Prague, and other universities began to be established quite rapidly. Libraries of cities and individual feudal lords also emerged. In Italy, the first public libraries have been established in the 15th century.

New Ages

The digital technologies and the internet of the 21st century are changing the way libraries work and the tasks of architects in designing them. In many of new libraries, card catalogs are no longer filled in, even if the design must provide space for computers that are used for searching, and publications can also be ordered online. In addition, for many readers, simple libraries are not enough: they need to be equipped with the internet in order to use special publication search engines. Also, modern libraries often have a cafe, bookstore, exhibition hall, and similar facilities for various events or even concerts.

Newly built libraries have more functions, as a result, they are no longer called libraries but media libraries in many parts of the world. They have audio and video collections, cinema, theater, conference halls, discussion panels. The number of seats in libraries is reduced as prose and poetry lovers usually carry books at home. It is considered worthwhile to build smaller libraries with the most popular and necessary information for the average reader.