The first libraries in the world were collections of texts written on clay tablets. Some of these archives discovered in Sumer (modern-day southern Iraq) date back as far as 2600 BC.
In the classical period the Library of Alexandria, in Egypt, functioned as a major center for academia. It existed from the 3rd century BC until the Roman conquest of Egypt in 30 BC.
Throughout the centuries since, libraries have played an important role in many cities not only as places of places for books but as meeting and study centers. They were and still are often designed to show off the architecture of the time and as a cultural centre-point.
Even though e-books and digital archives have taken over in many places, libraries themselves are still important places for quiet research and reflection.
Read on for a list of beautiful libraries across the globe. If you have some other suggestions, let us know in the comments.
1. Bibliothèque Nationale De France, Paris, France
2.The City Libary, Stuttgart, Germany
3. George Peabody Library, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
4. The National Library Of Prague, Prague, Czech Republic
5. Biblioteca Real Gabinete Portugues De Leitura
6. The National Library Of China, Beijing, China
7. Budapest University Of Technology And Economics (bme), Hungary
8. Trinity College Library - Dublin - Ireland
9. Royal Site Of San Lorenzo De El Escorial Library, S. Lorenzo De El Escorial, Spain
10. Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Alexandria, Egypt
11. New York Public Library, New York
12. Phillips Exeter Academy Library, New Hampshire, U.S
13. Kanazawa Umimirai Library, Kanazawa City, Japan
14. Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale University, Connecticut, USA
15. Stormen Public Library in Bodø, Norway
16. Stockholm Public Library, Stockholm, Sweden