Libraries: Where the world’s memory is stored - BBC - Culture.
Stiftsbibliothek Admont (Admont Abbey Library), Austria
Whatever you think of religion, it’s clear that monasteries and their libraries were historically the batteries that kept the light of (what we think of as) Western civilisation burning. The Admont Abbey library has been one of the greatest sources of stored cultural energy for almost a millennium. It is the largest monastic library in the world, and it could also be the grandest.
The Benedictine community at Admont goes back to 1074, and it has been collecting books all that time. The abbey currently holds around 1,400 precious manuscripts, of which more than half date from the Middle Ages and the earliest is from the 8th Century. Modelled on the Imperial Court Library in Vienna, which its architect Josef Hueber also designed, it is acknowledged to be a masterpiece.
The baroque interior of the 70m (230 feet)-long library hall is made up of seven circular vaults, divided by a large central vault on the ceiling of which is a fresco of ‘Divine Wisdom’ by the artist Altomonte. The rooms are dotted with impressive sculptures by Josef Stammel, who worked for Admont for many years. The books are arranged by subject matter, under corresponding frescoes, in accordance with Enlightenment ideals.http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20180704-libraries-where-the-worlds-memory-is-stored