One of Vienna’s treasures are its old and classic books and other important print collections which can be found in the city’s famous libraries. The Hofbibliothek is just one of them.
This former Imperial Library was almost burned down to ashes back in 1992. At that time, large portions of the the Hofburg palace were damaged. Fortunately, the historic library was spared.
Today, the Imperial Library boasts of some 200,000 books and manuscripts making it still the biggest Baroque library in the entire European continent. Some rare manuscripts particularly that of church reformer Martin Luther make up the library’s precious holdings and they are considered the largest collection of its kind in the world. Also in there is the personal library of Prince Eugene of Savoy.
Apart from its books and manuscripts, though, the library itself is a place to behold because of its artworks and architectural design. For instance, the Prunksaal or the library’s state hall was designed by Austrian architect Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach and his son Josef Emmanuel while the dome features frescoes created by Daniel Gran. The frescoes are about war end peace.
Other noteworthy items that can be found in the Imperial Library are two large Baroque Venetian globes each measuring more than one meter in diameter. They are permanently displayed there.