Types of Sources
Understanding the Sources
The Study of Documents
The Study of Seals
For historians, scholarly libraries are an indispensable part of their working life, where they spend a great deal of their time. Here scholarly literature and primary sources are available in systematic, ordered form. Such libraries and institutions have long traditions rooted in a period well before the Middle Ages. The concept 'library', from the Latin for book (liber), or its Greek form 'biblioteca', means nothing more (in Latin or in Greek forms) a place to store books.
In the Middle Ages, libraries - which did not yet contain printed books, of course, but manuscript books - were located mainly in monastic houses. One famous example is the
Stiftsbibliothek in St. Gallen. It is the only monastic library of the Middle Ages which survived in its original location, and today is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The following film deals with this example and after a general introduction on the theme 'the library', shows how the entire holdings of a medieval library can be made available in digital form via the example of the innovative project known as the Codices Electronici Sangallenses (CESG)
Baroque Room of the Stiftsbibliothek (Monastic Library) in St. Gall