Saturday, October 16, 2010

Roman public libraries

Roman public libraries

Introducing the concept:
Early Rome had a strong focus on learning and education so thus the upper class and middle class found that books were very precise assets. However only rich people had the money to buy books so the lower class didn’t have books and also had no way to assess the information providing in these books. Julius cesure the emperor at that time saw this problem and to ratify it asked his friend to create a collection of books for him and build a building to house these books which would be for the public however he was murder before this could happen so the first public libraries was not build until later.

Early history:
The first public library in Rome was built by Asinius Pollio soon after this Augustus opened the another two public libraries soon afterward.Asinius library collection had both Greek and Latin books and  then. The books in this library could not be borrowed and only looked at and the opening hours where in the evening each day for patrons. These days the library did not stand the test of times and lays in ruins which create a great historic landmark in rome and are a fantastic torist atraction.

All the popular libraries in Rome reflect the use of stones pillars and domes in the main structure of each building this is because they were all comissioned to be design by architects around the 18th century . Roman public libraries have two things in common they are very old and made of similar material such as stone, marble and wood. Each of the public libraries i studied also had the same large range of old books spaning from 20,000 to 30,000 books in total.The design and layout of the old public libraries also gave the public access to things long enjoyed by the wealthier classes such as gardens, sculpture, and, most prominently, bathhouses. Below are pictures of the different popular libraries.

Roman public libraries are also have similar
architecture to most public libraries around the world if you look at the pictures below you can see all the building from the diffrent libraries have a dome structure reading rooms and similar layout.

State library of Victoria.
The national British library.
The Casanatense Library.

                                                                 General information :
Angelica Library
If you look at the picture directly above that is of the Angelica Library this library consisted of very old works dated back to the end of the 15th century the library consist of over 20,000 items donated by Angelo Rocca. All the books in the library focus on religion in Rome.

The Casanatense Library
I spoke about this library briefly in my blog. The library was founded in 1701 by the Dominicans of the Monastery of Santa. Much of the libraries collection was donated by the Neapolitan cardinal Girolamo Casanate’s private library and focuses on a number of different subjects.

Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale Vittorio Emanuele II
The national library of Rome the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale Vittorio Emanuele II in Rome was founded in 1875.  The library contains 3,0000 books, 1,883 incunabula, 6,169 manuscripts and 30,000 autographs.

Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale Vittorio Emanuele II information:

PlanetWare Inc 2010, Rome - National Library, PlanetWare Inc, viewed 18 October 2010

The Casanatense Library and The Angelica Library
Ariane Varela Braga 2010, Rome's historic libraries, WordPress Entries (RSS), viewed 18 October 2010

Early history and design information :
Private Libraries in Ancient Rome,viewed 19 October 2010


Introducing the consept: Most information is from britanica online restricted assess to only swinburne students.

That concludes my blog on roman public libraries some areas and i hope everyone ejoyed reading.

Some suggestions for me for next time would be think very carefully before creating my topic plan. i think in area one i should have just researched old public libraries and public libraries in roman history and just got rid of the other area then focus mainly on history which i could find the most information on as i couldn't find a lot of information on areas two and three.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Post 6: area three and conclusion.

First before i explain what information i have gained out of this project i want to supply you with all the resources i used to gain this information in links that are not already given:

So in area one i focused mainly in public roman libraries in the past and found out about why they were created and when. I also found out the name of the first public library in Rome and who created it. For the second part of area one modern public roman libraries i found out the names of a large number of modern public libraries, then supplied the librarie websites as links and added picture to my blog i also found out about borrowing from the libraries and opening hours which are much the same as our making an exception for the SLV which does not allow borrowing. All information was found from websites I have supplied on my blog in post two and three.

Through looking at the pictures of the roman libraries and also in area two finding pictures of Australian, British and American libraries i realized they all have the similar building construction such as the reading rooms that are all dome structures i could then draw a connection to each public library in America, Australia and Britain to Roman libraries however after a couple weeks of  research that is one of the only similarities i could find not including each is a borrowing library except SLV in Australia that’s about it. All information was found from Google images and websites supplied on my blog in post four and five.

Area three in researching roman public I have found that the layout of the building is very good it allows for users of the roman public libraries to sit, relax and have their own space in comfortable chairs and provides desk to user to also do study and reading while providing another space for employees of the libraries to do work and walk around the library as this is the conclusion I have made from looking at numerous pictures however some negative qualities of  roman public libraries I have found is that although they may have a large collection a lot of it is not in English and needs to be translated to English for english speaking countries and people I see this as a very big problem as English is the one languges spoking by most people across the globe. Also the preservation and conservation is done well in each library as the books it each collection are mostly old texts. This is what I consider to be the positives and negatives of the roman public libraries in Italy and with that I conclude my blog on roman public libraries.       

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Post five: area 2 roman public libraries.

This week i worked on area two findind similarities between roman libraries to libraries in america, australia and britian. The main resourch i used was the search engine google. I wasn't sure where i would find similaries between the roman and other public libraries so i decided to strat off with appearance going into google and finding the top public libraries in all countries the three main libraries i found were the newyork public librarie in america, the british librarie in london and the state library of victoria in australia from there i borowsed throught google to find pictures of each library and also looked at the pictures of roman public libraries I had gained from area one research then noted how each librarie building had a special dome shaped reading room and all tables and desks in these reading rooms were made of wood also with the american roman libraries each had thier desks postioned horizontally in rows. I have posted the pictures of the libraries in the side of the blog so everyone can see the similarities i was talking about.

After i had finished with collecting information for area two i'm going to strat looking at area three reviewing my information i had gained in area two and one this will be in my next journal post.

Pictures of the reading rooms of the state library of victoria:

Pictures of the reading the british library:

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Post four: research area two on roman public libraries

Post four: research area two

This week I started my research into area 2 of my studies into public roman libraries also looking at public libraries in places such as Britain Australia and the united states however before I did this later in the week I needed to finish off collecting resources for the seconds half of area one which was modern public libraries I had to finish collecting resources from all the website I collected on modern public libraries that I put under my links on my blog there was not really a hole lot of information I found on modern public libraries as I had to search each individual website.

In area two I looked for information about American, British and Australian public library in databases on the Swinburne library website such as encyclopedia Britannica and i also looked through websites using goggle such engine as well as using my local libraries catalogue to perform title and advance searches to find book, periodicals and dvd on area 2. I will post at the bottom of this post pictures of the different libraries and more media on roman public libraries next week I’m going to put some screen shots of books I found up on my blog and start looking at similarities of the British, American and Australia websites against the roman public libraries however this week I just stated my research on American, Australian and British public libraries. I also need to go into my local library and ask the reference librarian if they can help me find more information on roman public libraries.

Britannica full version access through Swinburne library log in and it will take you to the home page:

Articles and other information found from Britannica on British public libraries you need to go throught the swinburne library database to access all britannica articles and pictures below and go to the search tab searching all titles of articles and pictures because the links will not work as you need to access the library’s full version of the database this is just for critiation:

British Library." Encyclopedia Britannica. Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, 2010. Web. 14 Sept. 2010

British Museum. Photograph. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Web. 14 Sept. 2010 -

British Museum." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, 2010. Web. 14 Sept. 2010

Articles and other information found from Britannica on America public libraries:

New York Public Library." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, 2010. Web. 14 Sept. 2010 <

New York Public Library. Photograph. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Web. 14 Sept. 2010 <>.

Here some link to australian amd british library websites:

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Post three:Library Casanatense, a cultural treasure hidden among the streets of Rome

This week for my research process i used the internet as a resource and still focused on area one which is modern and past public libraries. I found a small amount of information on modern libraries by searching with Google. A great website i found had all the names of some public libraries in Italy from this i selected the names of the libraries in Rome however their was not many and then after finding the names i wrote them down on a piece of paper and searched each one of them on Google to see if the libraries had a website most did however some could not be translated into English and i can't speak Italian so that was a major difficulty i had in assessing information. Some of the really informative website i will post in the link such as the national library of Italy and the cansantense library website.

The second topic i focused on also studying this week was past roman libraries and reviewing the information i have gained which i would like to share with you all.

Early Rome had a strong focus on learning and education so thus the upper class and middle class found that books were very precise assets. They tyred very hard to build a collection they could barge to other about, but with the accumulation of these books problem started to arise like where to keep the books so to solve this problem roman people build special areas to house the books these were the first private libraries, however the lower class had no way to assess the information providing in these books as the did not have the means or funds to purchase books. Julius cesure the emperor at that time saw this problem and to ratify it asked his friend to create a collection of books for him and archtics to build a building to house these books which would be for the public to view however he was murder before this could happen so the first public libraries was not build until later on by Asinius Pollio his library collection had both Greek and Latin books and that's how public libraries came to be in Rome.

Modern public library information:

Friday, August 27, 2010

Roman public library research: Post two

This week i used tools such as the internet/website, online library catalogues and databases to find information for my assignment on roman public library.

The websites i found on Google were all very informative however i had to be carefully to get information that was accurate and correct some of the more informative webpages i have supplied as links on the side of the blog.

Then next i utilize the databases on the Swinburne library website using encyclopedia Britannica to find article relating to my research area one roman library in the past however i only found a couple of articles which i will also put in my links for everyone to have a look at.

When i had finished sifting through databases i decided to looked at my local library's online catalogue for books using the option to search in all of the swift consortium which is a system that libraries join across Australia so they can share resources this search for information only provided me with one relevant resource next week i will go into the library and ask the reference librarian for information hopefully this method will provide me with more resources for my blog. Lastly i performed a search for different media such as video clips and audio on area one roman public libraries in the past but didn't find anything on YouTube nonetheless I’m intending to keep looking for video on different websites rethinking my search strategies for next week.

An interesting fact for everyone is the picture i have on my blog is of one of the early public library in Rome founded by G. Asinius Pollio if you click on the picture you will be taking to the website i sourced the picture from and you can read about it.

Mostly this week i have learned about roman public libraries in the past, who founded the first public libraries and what old roman public libraries looked like on the inside and outside by looking at different picture. Some facts i found that were really interesting is that there is no knowledge of the first and early public libraries allowing the public to borrow or read book in the libraries definitely not the lower class in Rome which is what was advertised however something we do know the public libraries were open in the morning and not the late afternoon or evening more research needs to be done to find out more.

All in all i found a lot of interesting information this week relating to my assignment and i'm looking forward to sharing next weeks discoveries with everyone.

The Casey Cardinia library website address:

The Casey Cardinia library catlogue address:

The website where i got information on one of the first public libraries:

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Roman public libraries: post one

This blog was designed by me for a research project I’m doing in my Libraries Studies class which asked me to choose a topic from a list of topics that i was interested in. So i choose roman public libraries as i have always been very interested in roman culture and history and my mother side of the family came from Italy.

This blog will contain information about roman public libraries which i have collected from research and study the information that i have collected will be broken down in three different area. The first area will be making comparisons and provided basic information on roman public libraries in the past and modern public roman libraries.

The second areas is looking at comparing different public libraries around the world to roman libraries i will do this by looking at aspects that are similar in each libraries to draw a connection between the different libraries.

Then finely in the third area i will review the main information i have gained in area one on modern public libraries and make an informed decision on negative qualities of the library such as poor inside layout of building , collection that does not meet clientele needs whether it be the libraries catering for the wrong clientele or maybe not enough of the collection is able to be assessed by clients those are just some of the aspect of the public libraries in Rome that could be negative while also looking at information gained on positive aspects of the public libraries such as advanced book technology like e-books in the library self check out, free computer services, a great collection of book to suit all clients and other positive thing about the roman public library system .