You probably have a library in your own town, but there are also some huge, incredible, ornate libraries all around the world.
Many would agree that technology has taken over our world. Even things that always used to be on physical paper, like books, have been moved to devices like Kindles, laptops, and tablets. But no matter how many books are moved online, there will always be something so comforting and whimsical about a library.
Stuttgart City Library
Stuttgart City Library is found in its namesake city in Germany and is unique for its modern, geometric appearance. On the outside, the library is a large, white, cubicle building with dozens of windows, and on the inside, it is simply breathtaking. The bookshelves and floors are perfectly white, and a pattern of staircases twist higher and higher up the building, creating five different layers of the library. The reading room is known for its upside-down pyramid shape, while the building itself is known for its clean, pristine style.
Stuttgart City Library may not have the historical, cozy element that many other libraries do, but it is certainly renowned for its modern beauty. In fact, it even won the Library of the Year Award in 2013.
Haskell Free Library and Opera House
This institution is interesting for two reasons. The first, which is obvious from its name, is that this library includes an opera house. The building is home to more than 20,000 books, as well as a stage for performances and four hundred seats for guests. The second reason Haskell Free Library and Opera House is unique is that it is located in two different countries. That’s right, the building is placed on the border between the Canadian province of Quebec, and Vermont of the United States.
The stage and the books are located in Canada, while most of the opera house seats and the main entrance to the library are located in Vermont. A thick, black line inside the building shows visitors where the dividing border is. Where else can you stand in two different countries, while still enjoying a good book or an opera?
Admont Abbey Library
This stunning library is located in Admont, Austria, and is the largest monastic library in the world. It is nestled in the beautiful mountains of the Ennstal Alps, but the beauty extends into the library itself. The library has seven domed ceilings, called cupolas, each with amazing artwork inside, and gold accents are found throughout the building to go along with the gold and white color scheme. The Admont Abbey Library has incredible historical and artistic value, and it doesn’t take long to realize that this library looks as if it came straight out of a European fairy tale.
Library of Alexandria
Thousands of thousands of years ago, in the second and third centuries, the Library of Alexandria was hailed as the largest center of knowledge in the world, with some historical records reporting that it held between 40,000 and 400,000 scrolls. Unfortunately, Julius Caesar’s civil war caused the famous fire that damaged the library in the year 48 BC, but it has since been rebuilt into an amazing slanted, circular structure of granite and glass. The size of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, which means “library of Alexandria” in Latin, is simply astonishing.
The shelves can hold a whopping eight million books, and the building also includes four museums, a planetarium, and a conference center. The size, architectural beauty, and history behind Bibliotheca Alexandrina make it one of the most amazing libraries in the world. Libraries have played a crucial role in our history and culture, and continue to stun and amaze with incredible architecture, technology, and of course, books. There are dozens of beautiful, astonishing libraries around the world, and this list highlights some of the institutions that stick out above the rest.