The European Library

Monday, 19 August 2019 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: European Union, Opera Houses, Theaters, Libraries

© The European Library

© The European Library

The European Library is an Internet service that allows access to the resources of 49 European national libraries and an increasing number of research libraries. Searching is free and delivers metadata records as well as digital objects, mostly free of charge. The objects come from institutions located in countries which are members of the Council of Europe and range from catalogue records to full-text books, magazines, journals and audio recordings. Over 200 million records are searchable, including 24 million pages of full-text content and more than 7 million digital objects. Thirty five different languages are represented among the searchable objects. The content of the European Library was frozen on 31 December 2016, with no new updates after that date.

The European Library provided much of the organization and support required to launch Europeana – a European Commission initiative that makes millions of digital objects from libraries, museums and archives accessible to the public via the Europeana website. When the European Parliament called for Europeana to be established, the Conference of European National Librarians (CENL), under the auspices of the National Library of the Netherlands and CENL’s service The European Library, were asked to submit for a project under the eContentplus programme. Work began on a prototype in 2007 and Europeana was launched in November 2008. Europeana now operates independently but The European Library continues to work closely with Europeana. The European Library is the aggregator of digital content from national libraries for Europeana and delivers digital content from national libraries on a monthly basis to Europeana. As of July 2012, The European Library was the second biggest content provider to Europeana, with 3.45 million items added to the Europeana database. Some human and technical resources are also shared between Europeana and The European Library.

In addition to its search engine, The European Library pulls together themes from the collections of Europe’s national libraries and displays them in virtual exhibitions. These exhibitions unite geographically disparate objects in a single online space, offering Pan-European sources on the topic.

  • Manuscripts and Princes in Medieval and Renaissance Europe:34 manuscripts from the royal collections of the Carolingian Emperors, French King Charles V and his family, and the Aragonese kings of Naples.
  • Travelling Through History: Centuries worth of travel memorabilia from 13 European libraries, including photographs, sounds, maps and books.
  • Reading Europe: Almost 1,000 books selected by national libraries, with curatorial information and full-text versions in most cases.
  • A Roma Journey: Texts, photographs, paintings and recordings of traditional songs showing the heritage of the Romani people in Europe.
  • Napoleonic Wars: A selection of portraits, military maps, city plans, letters, books and other material from the Napoleonic Wars.
  • Treasures of Europe’s National Libraries: A collection of objects selected by Europe’s national libraries as some of the most outstanding items in their collections.
  • National Library Buildings: Images of the National Libraries that are partners of The European Library.

The European Library is financed by its owners, the Conference of European National Librarians (CENL). The portal is maintained by The European Library Office located in the premises of the Dutch Royal Library in The Hague. Its programme director is Jill Cousins.

Read more on The European Library, Europeana und Wikipedia European Library (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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