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The Old Library is the building of the former Royal Library, located in the very center of Berlin, on Unter den Linden Street. The Baroque building, designed by the Austrian architect Josef Emanuel Fischer von Erlach and built by the Prussian architect Georg Christian Unger, was erected in 1775-1780. Since the beginning of the XX century, the building of the Old Library houses the Faculty of Law of the Humboldt University.
The Old Library, like many other objects that have become attractions, was built by order of Frederick the Great. Thanks to the appearance of this place, literature, which was available only to privileged nobles, ministers and statesmen, began to fall into the hands of the bourgeoisie. To this day, on the portal of the building, one can see the inscription carved in stone in Latin"Food for the soul".
In 1784, the newly rebuilt library building received more than 150 thousand volumes" Spree", founded by Friedrich Wilhelm. Previously, this library was located in the pharmacy wing of the Berlin city palace. The library's collection contained unique manuscripts of the figures of the Enlightenment: Diderot, Kant, Rousseau, Leibniz, Voltaire.
By 1905, the library's funds amounted to about one and a half million volumes, it became the largest and most effective library institution in Germany. So the need arose to expand the area and in 1914 the Royal Library moved to a building on Berlin's famous street Unter den Linden, and in 1918 it became known as the Prussian State Library.
The old library is very similar in appearance to the Mikhailovsky building of the Hofburg in Vienna: Fradrich the Great ordered his architect to simply copy the Vienna project. However, the original project, which at that time was already fifty years old, was implemented only by 1893. It so happens that the Berlin copy is almost a hundred years older than the original. The building of the Old Library, badly damaged during the Second World War and rebuilt almost immediately, has been called by Berliners for more than two centuries for its curved shape a"chest of drawers".
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Topic: Old library in Germany, Berlin spa.