Explore one of the most beautiful libraries in the world.
Libraries are a book nerd’s dream. Row, upon row of books. However, most libraries are fairly utilitarian today, with plain architecture and plywood shelving. However, that was not always the case. Books were luxury goods until the 19th century when mass printing became more effective, along with the introduction of cheap paper. Volumes were housed in exquisite rooms in fancy manor houses and in monasteries. Universities also collected books, including Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland.
The Library of Trinity College Dublin is Ireland’s version of the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. When books are published in Ireland, a copy has to be sent to be storied in the stacks. Many of these are actually stored out in a separate facility in the Dublin suburbs today, but once they graced the Long Room.
The oldest library building, the Long Room, was started in 1712 and houses 200,000 of the library’s oldest books. In 1850, the original one-story room was expanded to what we see today, and it is truly stunning.
The Long Room at Trinity Library in Dublin is a book lover’s paradise. You may not be able to touch the books, but they sure are pretty to look at. The library also has an exhibit on the Book of Kells, an illuminated manuscript from the 9th century. Now that is a gorgeous book.