Oxford’s Bodleian Library and the Vatican’s Biblioteca Apostolica have announced the digitization of 1.5 million ancient texts and medieval books after receiving funds from the Polonsky Foundation.
Among the material to be available online are Greek manuscripts and 15th and 16th century Greek classical books, Hebrew early manuscripts and printed books.
The project aims at allowing researchers and the public to have free access to historic and rare texts that have been preserved for many centuries by the two libraries. Moreover, it will allow the two separate collections from Oxford and the Vatican to become one through their digital print.
The Vatican Library, or the library of the Holy See, is one of the oldest libraries in the world and contains one of the most significant collections of historical texts. Formally established in 1475, though in fact much older, it has 75,000 codices from throughout history.
The Bodleian Library, the main research library of the University of Oxford, is one of the oldest libraries in Europe; in Britain, it is second in size only to the British Library.