Libraries are a place where books, magazines, videos, musical recordings and other materials are available for people to use or borrow.Some love them and some downright hate them but they have been a source of knowledge since ancient times.
Here are the 5 largest libraries in the world according to the number of items they hold.
5. Russian State Library
The Russian State Library is the national library of Russia. It was established in 1862 and has over 275 km of shelves. The library has 44.4 million items including over 17 million books and serial volumes, 13 million journals, 350,000 music scores and sound records, 150,000 maps, and others.
4. New York Public Library
The New York Public Library (NYPL) is an independently managed, nonprofit corporation operating with both private and public financing public library system. With nearly 53 million items, it is the fourth largest in the world. The library was developed in 1895 from an amalgamation of grass-roots libraries, and social libraries of bibliophiles and the wealthy.
3. Library and Archives Canada
Library and Archives Canada (LAC) is a federal institution tasked with acquiring, preservation, accessibility of Canada’s documentary heritage. It was established in 2004 is the third largest library in the world. It has over 54 million items including 20 million books, 24 million photographs, and more than a petabyte of digital content.
2. Library of Congress
The Library of Congress is the official research library for the United States Congress and it is also the national library of the United States. It is the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States and was established on April 24, 1800. It houses over 160 million items including 23,892,068 catalogued books, 5,711 incunabula, 14,067,260 monographs and serials, music, bound newspapers, pamphlets, technical reports, and other printed material, and 122,810,430 items in the nonclassified collections.
1. British Library
The British Library is the largest library in the world by the number of items catalogued and also the national library of the United Kingdom. The British Library was established in 1973 and boasts a collection of over 170 million items. There are books, manuscripts, journals, newspapers, magazines, sound and music recordings, videos, play-scripts, patents, databases, maps, stamps, prints, drawings in many languages in both print and digital format. It has around 14 million books many manuscripts and historical items dating back as far as 2000 BC.