The Library of the Archiginnasio seeks to preserve, increase and promote the documentary patrimony gathered over the ages in the Palazzo of the Archiginnasio. The Library offers specialized information and research documentation and is involved in cultural promotion. Due to its historical importance and collections, the Archiginnasio is among the most important municipal libraries in Italy. A testimony to Bologna's culture, it has been considered a privileged place for the preservation of the city's memory since its foundation.
Inaugurated in December 2001,a cultural space and multimedia within Accursio Palace, former seat of the historic town that overlooks the Piazza Maggiore, always the center and heart of Bologna. Today, the Salaborsa once again gives witness to the centrality and importance of this site in its new role as library, treasuretrove of knowledge and multi-media center.
The library open its doors to the public in 1756. With the first library decree of the United Italy (1869) the library came to be one of the most important in the country and in 1885 it was officially recognized as of University Status. It is worth remembering that in addition to the Library’s enormous wealth of written and printed heritage – now amounting to over 1.250.000 volumes – it also comprises an art collection made up of over 400 portraits of illustrious figures, while 16th century frescoes.
Library documents the best of literary production in the sixteenth to the nineteenth century. Early editions (XVII-XVIII secc.), texts rare hard to find in other libraries and all the authors (Dante, Petrarca, Boccaccio, Ariosto, Chiabrera, Parini, Monti, Leopardi) are present in editions philological and found the best comments.
The deconsecrated church of San Giorgio in Poggiale hosts a library of art and history and holds the book heritage of Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio in Bologna, a newspaper library and a photo archive.
There is controversy as to the exact date of the construction of the first library of the convent of Saint Michele in Bosco: to some it was raised towards the end of the 15th century, while others suggest the year 1517 under the Priorate of Barnaba Cevenini. A library representing one of the most complete and rarest collection of books in the entire field of orthopedics.
39.000 pamphlets, a computerized catalog, the Archives Rubbiani (vestry of St. Francesco), the Historical Archives of the Bologna Province of Friars Minor Conventual, the music archive (3.000 autograph manuscripts of which 800, music and musicology in print catalog published).
The Library of the Historical Insitute Parri Emilia-Romagna is specialized in the field of contemporary history, in particular: World War I and II, fascism, Italian and European anti-fascism, liberation war, postwar reconstruction, Italian Republic, teaching of history textbooks on the history of the twentieth century, and the broad themes of contemporaneity.