Thursday, March 31, 2016

China library among world's 'most exquisite'

An ancient library in China was named one of the most exquisite libraries in the world.  The Ningbo library ranks up their with libraries from mostly Europe and the United States. Only one other library in Asia, this one in South Korea, made the list of 15 libaries.

The list, which was featured in a CNN article, was compiled by Dr. James Cambell of Cambridge University from his book: The  Library: A World History.

The Tianyi Chamber in Ningbo dates back to 1561, making it the oldest surviving library in China.  The library is dark inside; patrons were expected to choose a book and then take it outside to read.

The Tianyi Chamber boasts 300,000 books, of which 80,000 are considered rare,  though it had  only about 13,000 books when the People's Republic of China was founded in 1949. The books had either been stolen or destroyed. The collection, started by an official who liked books, has since been restored.

The library is located beside Ming Lake in Ningbo, a city in East China's Zhejiang Province. The library is open to the public; an admission fee is charged.