Rare books as a cultural heritage: conservation and documentation

The collection of valuable and rare books is not only a research tool but also part of our cultural heritage. The library is committed to maintaining and preserving this heritage to the highest standards.

In close cooperation with the Istituto Centrale per il Restauro e la Conservazione del Patrimonio Archivistico e Librario (ICRCPAL), and supported with special funds from the Max-Planck-Society, the entire rare book collection has been undergoing conservation treatment since 2017. A team of five restorers selected by the ICRCPAL examines each volume for damage, which is documented digitally, before submission to the library's own laboratory workshop for conservation in accordance with state-of-the-art practices. Newly developed nano collagens are also used in cooperation with the Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Chimiche of the Università di Roma. At the same time, codicological peculiarities such as ownership marks, bindings and marginalia are systematically recorded and made searchable.

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