Explore a selection of digitized materials from their vast catalogue.
Once the tedious process of scanning all the individual pages of each manuscript is complete, the works are compiled and uploaded to their dedicated DigiVatLib website, where they can be viewed by the public. Currently they have about 15,000 of their collection uploaded and ready to view. If they keep pace at 3,000 uploads per year, they should have the whole library of 80,000 manuscripts scanned by 2041.
The prelate said that some of the documents that have already been uploaded come from their “reserve.” These documents are examples of the oldest and most important in their collection. While they are some of the most consulted, because of their age and condition, non-experts would rarely have an opportunity to examine them. As an added bonus, now that they can be viewed online, when experts need to refer to them in the future they will not have to risk damage or further deterioration of these important historical records.
Aside from manuscripts, DigiVatLib also features incunabula (early examples of printed books, published in Europe before 1501), archival materials and inventories as well as graphic materials, coins and medals, and other printed materials (special projects).
This project has many contributors, including the Polonsky Foundation, which is also involved in several other programs for the digitization of historical documents, and the Sanctuary of Culture Foundation, a group which is dedicated to the restoration, collection, study, preservation, research, and promotion of significant aspects of knowledge, culture, inter-religious exchange, and humanity, especially those related to the venerable institution of the Vatican Apostolic Library.
This article previously misidentified the Prefect of the Vatican Library under whose watch this project was undertaken. Thanks to Mons. Laurecne J. Spiteri for charitably offering corrections.
If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.
Here are some numbers:
- 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
- Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
- Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
- Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
- Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
- We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)
As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.
Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!