Magazine article UNESCO Courier

The Lenin Library

Magazine article UNESCO Courier

The Lenin Library

Article excerpt

The Lenin Library

THE Lenin State Library is the most important library in the Soviet Union. It is the keystone of the country's unified library system, in which it acts as a depository for all publications, a co-ordination centre for library science and bibliographical work, a scientific and methodological centre, and a centre for inter-library loans.

The library was founded in 1862. Its nucleus was the library of Count N.P. Rumantsev, an early nineteenth-century Russian politician and scholar for whom it was named. In 1918, when the Soviet Government was transferred from Petrograd to Moscow, the Rumantsev public library became the National Library. In 1921 it was functioning as a State depository for all books published in the country, and in the same year began to extend its holdings through the acquisition of works of foreign literature, a process which has continued regularly ever since. An international exchange service was inaugurated. On 6 February 1925, by a decree of the Soviet Government, it was named the Lenin State Library. …

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