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Niedersächsische Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek, Göttingen

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GBV Holdings

Historical note

Göttingen University Library was founded in 1734 as a practical working library for the new university. Its foundations are in several smaller collections which included the library of Göttingen Grammar School (with books mainly on history, classical philology, theology), the library left by Joachim Hinrich von Bülow (1650-1724; a universal library with an emphasis on historical, political and legal literature) and duplicates from the Royal Library in Hanover.

Several decades later it was enhanced by the collection of Friedrich Armand von Uffenbach (1687-1769), whose books on mathematics, engineering, topography and history of art came to the library in 1770. Through purchasing and the special support of the university’s founder and curator, Minister and Privy Counsellor Gerlach Adolph Freiherr von Münchhausen (1688-1770), the library steadily increased its holdings. Leading scholars such as Johann Matthias Gesner (1691-1761) and, for almost fifty years, Christian Gottlieb Heyne (1763-1812), were in charge of the library and did much to improve its collections.

In the early years, the principles of building up the collection were based on convictions and methods of the Enlightenment. As scientific work and research required literature in all areas of scholarship from all over the world, the library from the start acquired books not only from local book sellers but also through direct contacts with the book trade in the rest of Europe. In this way, the library achieved a high degree of completeness in its collections, and already in the 18th century it became a model of a modern scholarly universal library.

In 1990 the Niedersächsische Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek, Göttingen (SUB Göttingen) joined a national project aiming to create a German national library in retrospect. In collaboration with five other German libraries SUB Göttingen is responsible for collecting German imprints and imprints in German published in the period from 1701 to 1800.

Name and coverage of file

This file, the ‘‘GBV-Holdings of Niedersächsische Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Göttingen’’ currently numbers 15,317 records and covers the period from the beginnings of printing to the year 1830. The file is an extract from the Gemeinsamer Bibliotheksverbund (GBV) Union Catalogue (GVK) and represents the complete Göttingen holdings of one-volume works from this era. The file does not contain records of maps, microforms, online-resources or music.

Mode of cataloguing

The records of the file correspond to the entries of the GVK, which were predominantly created by catalogue conversion of the old hand written classified catalogue. This is why many records mirror the bibliographic standards of former times. More reliable records from other libraries within the GBV were used where available. Antiquarian acquisitions since 1990 have been catalogued with book in hand. All entries are created according to the major German cataloguing rules of PI or RAK-WB.

Present/absent fields

Alternative forms of names of persons stemming from standard data sets were added to approximately 50,000 records. Additional information such as footnotes, fingerprints, etc. are included where they exist. Due to the lack of information in the old records some fields are missing. Particularly codes of language or country are rarely available.

Recommendations for searching

Searching on basic bibliographic information such as author, title, year and place of publication will normally lead to the best and most reliable results. The use of other descriptive categories may help in reducing too many hits and improving precision, but the risk of incomplete results should be borne in mind.

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 resources/hpb/content/niedersaechsische_staats-_und_universitaetsbibliothek_goettingen.txt · Last modified: 2013/08/22 16:42 by baldwin



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