The Abbey Library of Saint Gall is the oldest library in Switzerland. The library’s founder, Saint Othmar, is also credited
with establishing an abbey of the same name in 719, known as one of the oldest monastery libraries in the world. Saint Gall
is home to roughly 160,000 volumes, including manuscripts dating back to the 8th century. In 1983, the United Nations’
Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization named the library a World Heritage site, calling it a “a perfect example
of a great Carolingian monastery”. The library offers online access to many of its holdings through an electronic database
though, as a general rule, pre-1900 books can only be read on-site.
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