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The city of Udine has a great literary tradition and many public and private libraries whose beginnings date back for the most part to the first half of the 1800s when the first “reading cabinets” were introduced. In 1864 the Biblioteca Comunale (Public Library) was founded, and some decades later was given the name “Vincenzo Joppi” in memory of its first great librarian. It is located in one of the most prestigious buildings in the city centre, Palazzo Bartolini, its home since 1866.

Today the “Joppi” library is the centre of a complex inter-library network that works closely with other libraries to “form - as they say - a system” that coordinates priorities, acquisitions, and specialization of collections, even outside territorial municipal boundaries, and which will, in the future, come to serve a much larger public of at least 150,000 citizens.

The “Joppi” has in recent years developed and honed its functions, specializing in services and identifying not only its single readers but a variety of audiences, each with its own needs and preferences. And so various sections have been created over the years: Children’s, Music, Friulian, Manuscripts and rarities, Cinema, Periodicals, as well as a municipal network of eight neighbourhood libraries to better serve the public, especially the older generations.

The “Bancolib(e)ro” service is also worthy of mention: for the enjoyment of readers everywhere, used books are put back into circulation by a group of volunteers (organized by the Casa dell’Immacolata di don Emilio De Roja). 

True to its name, the Library is truly “civic”, that is, belonging to everyone in the city, and it will soon become the centre of an even larger system. The number of books and other materials (including multimedia) that it lends annually is twice that of the population it serves. A number that leads one to reflect that, while it is a decidedly high number, why stop there? Why not grow even more? Together with the people that browse the stacks, sections and services to rediscover the great wealth and variey of its extraordinary resources.


Last update : 25/11/14 - Print page Print page

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