From the Platea of Saints John and Paul, II, 29-31, during the three- year period of 1839-1842 the library was enriched with 243 books totaling 700 volumes.
In the following three years (1842-1845), many books were purchased, including works of great value. All these works are registered and catalogued in the existing index of the library (Platea Ss. G. and P., II, 36).
The donation of the Canon D. Evangelisti (April 1846; cf Platea Ss. J. and P., II, 34-35) was so extensive that it caused a problem of space. This was resolved by constructing shelves up to the roof with two access stairways and a small gallery on each floor.
The work was carried out by Brother Simone Arduini (1801-1857), aided by other Brothers, in 1847.
The work was carried out by Brother Simone Arduini (1801-1857), aided by other Brothers, in 1847. On 4 January 1846, two large maps were acquired one of Italy and the other of the Pontifical State.
An unidentified source wrote the following concerning the new library: “On 22 February 1932 the Council examined the project for the new refectory and library. It approved the project and requested a quote.
On 09 March 1932, the budget was studied and approved. On 19 August 1934 they decided to erect the scaffolding for the new library”.
In 1990, the then librarian, Fr. Adriano Spina (MAPRAES) wrote– “the library of the Generalate consists of 44,000 volumes distributed into three rooms, the largest of which holds 120 periodic publications and 34,000 volumes…
In a personal research study done by the librarian, Fr. Adriano Spina, of only two of the three levels of the central hall, he identified 233 books printed in the 16th century, 238 in the 17th and 960 in the 18th century” (Adriano Spina, PIB, 1/1990).
It seems that the oldest book of the library is a selection of works by Pope Saint Leo the Great, printed in Rome in 1470.
For further information, contact the Librarian, Fr. Mario Collu: