Saxon State Library

Saxon State Library

Saxon State Library

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The Saxon State Library (Sächsische Landesbibliothek) in Dresden is the Staatsbibliothek of Saxony and the academic library of the Technische Universität Dresden. It is one of the main public archival centers of Germany. Its treasures, collected over four centuries, were located in the Japanisches Palais and in temporary archives for a long period of time. Since 2002 it is located in a new building merged to the Sächsische Landesbibliothek – Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Dresden (Saxon State Library – Regional and University Library Dresden).

From 1485, the city of Dresden was the seat of the Wettin dukes of Saxony, who from 1547 were prince-electors. The library was founded in 1556, when Prince-Elector Augustus (ruled 1553-1586) started systematically to acquire learned books and literary works. The prince himself inspected the lists of books offered at the book fair in Leipzig, the largest and most important city in his state, whose library had received the contents of the religious houses dissolved at the Reformation. Further, he instructed his diplomats to buy rare and precious books abroad. During the first half of the eighteenth century, under two rulers, Augustus the Strong (ruled 1694-1733) and his son, Augustus II (ruled 1733-1763), Dresden became a major European cultural center. The Court Library became a true state library for Saxony, absorbing many manuscripts, maps, and books from distinguished private collections, with some spectacular purchases,...
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