The Admont Abbey Library

"Admont Abbey (Ger.: Stift Admont) is a Benedictine monastery, which is located on the Enns River in the town of Admont (Austria). As the oldest remaining monastery in Styria, Admont Abbey contains the largest monastic library in the whole world! It is known for its Baroque architecture, art and manuscripts" 

(look at this beauty *ugly crying*)

Admont Abbey was founded in 1074 by Archbishop Gebhard of Salzburg (this dude hated King Henry IV's guts not even joking) and settled by monks from the St. Peter's Abbey (Salzburg) under abbot Isingrin (yeah we like those names). 

On April 27, 1865 a horrible fire almost destroyed the entire monastery. Unfortunately, the monastic archives burned, but the library could be salvaged. Reconstructions began a year later - but were still not completed by 1890. 

This library hall, which was built in 1776, to designs by architect Joseph Hueber, is 70 meters long, 14 wide and 13 high. And not only is it the most gorgeous thing I've ever seen but it's also the largest monastery library in the world. 
It contains about 70k volumes of the monastery's entire collection of 200,000 (!) volumes. 

The ceiling consists of 7 cupolas decorated by Bartolomeo Altomonte, which show stages of human knowledge up to the high point of Divine Revelation. 48 windows provide light that is reflected by the "original scheme of gold and white". 

The architecture and designs express the ideas of the Enlightenment - tho "The Four Last Things" by Joseph Stammel make a remarkable contrast: Death, Resurrection (also Judgement), Hell and of course Heaven. 

You can check out the stories of them here  (there're also more pics)

The abbey possesses over 1,400 manuscripts, the oldest of which were a gift of the founder (ya know that Gebhard dude) and they were accompanied by the first monks to settle here, as well as over 900 incunable ("the earliest stages or first traces in the development of anything") 

There are also a bunch of museums you can visit like The Natural History museum. The abbey also houses two major art collections of Historical and Modern Art (*internal screaming*). 

Since 1997 the abbey has also been building up a collection of more contemporary stuff, which is mainly produced by younger Austrian artists and often specially made for the abbey premises. 

The reason why I am talking about this library is not only because it's frickin beautiful and everyone who ever comes to Austria should visit it at least once, buuut because I just convinced my Dad to let us go this summer and he agreed and I'M SO EXCITED!! (seriously, we've been living here for 12 years it's about damn TIME)

I'm gonna post tons of stuff about this and take a bunch of pictures (is that even allowed??) and ahhhhhhhhh!!!!!


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