Home | Resources | Services | Hosting | Publications | Collaboration | Joining CERL | About CERL |

Biblioteca Civica Gambalunga


Via Gambalunga 27, 47900 Rimini. The library is situated in the city centre, within walking distance from the railway station and the Tempio Malatestiano. The seaside and the beach, where tourists flock in season, are only a short bus ride away.


The Biblioteca Civica Gambalunga is the generous bequest of the Riminese lawyer Alessandro Gambalunga, who at his death in 1619 left both his impressive mansion and his library to the city. From the beginning, the library was not only open to the public, but also managed by public authority. Over the centuries, the nucleus of a few thousand volumes increased with donations, bequests, acquisitions and the deposits of ecclesiastic holdings of various monasteries and orders. It has now developed into a modern library that aims at general information for all. The link has always been strong between the sea and the city, the seaside and the library: Ezra Pound was attracted by both - other famous readers were Ambroise Firmin Didot and Aby Warburg; Giovanni Bianchi (also known as Janus Plancus), the 18th-century erudite and bibliophile, studied the rhythm of the tide on the beach.

The workshop of a ‘libraro’, who was buyer as well as bookbinder, ensured that Alessandro Gambalunga was provided with a constant flow of relevant and precious books, the best the Italian book-trade could offer; the original elegant bindings are to this day valued among the library’s treasures. Once bound, the books were placed in the library where visitors were allowed to browse without restriction. The will of Gambalunga even established the salary of a librarian and stipulated the hours he should serve in order to guarantee access to the collections. Thanks to important patrons and learned librarians, the library enhanced its originally predominantly humanistic collection. Scientific texts, music scores, periodicals, and prints now complement the holdings. There is also a film library.

The library now occupies the whole palace commissioned by Gambalunga at the beginning of the 17th century. The building was influenced by the architectural canons of Sebastiano Serlio and the three main orders of classic architecture. At the death of Alessandro Gambalunga the historical library moved to the ground floor, around the beautiful loggias. It is now back on the first floor, placed on the stark walnut shelves of the 17th century and in the dainty rococo room embellished by two Blaeu globes. Readers are seated everywhere else, while the ground floor hosts the film library and temporary exhibitions.


There are approximately 226,000 books, including 60,000 rare books (among which are 380 incunables and nearly 5,000 16th-century editions), 1,350 codices, 6,000 prints, ca. 2,400 periodicals (330 current serials), music scores, cd-roms, audiocassettes, and films. An 11th-century Evangelarium and an early 12th-century codex of Honorius Augustodunensis and Hugo de Sancto Victore are very fine examples of the Beneventan script. Giovanni Bianchi’s letters bring to life the ideas and words of famous contemporaries such as Voltaire, Spallanzani, Haller, and Monti. The Des Vergers collection records the French project for a Récueil general d’épigraphie latine and other archaeological ventures in the 19th century. The substantial collection of periodicals covers most disciplines and includes all local publications, from the first gazette dated 10th August 1660 to ephemera such as tourist magazines aimed at this century’s summer crowds.

With its century-old history and the variety of its collections, the Gambalunga Library supports various catalogues: the catalogue of the manuscripts; the catalogue of early and modern printed works; the catalogue of serials; the on-line catalogue of the Servizio Bibliotecario Nazionale (SBN - the National Library System)-Romagna Site.


G. Mariani Canova, P. Meldini, S. Nicolini, I codici miniati della Gambalunghiana di Rimini. Milano, Motta, 1988.

P. Delbianco, La Biblioteca Gambalunghiana di Rimini, in Storia illustrata di Rimini, a cura di P. Meldini e A. Turchini, IV, N.E.A. Nuova Editoriale Aiep, 1991, pp. 1121 - 1136.

La Biblioteca Civica Gambalunga. L’edificio, la storia, le raccolte, a cura di P. Meldini Rimini, Biblioteca Civica Gambalunga, Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Rimini, 2000 (with English parallel text).


Marcello Di Bella

Opening hours

From 1 September to 30 June the library is open from Monday to Friday 8.00 a.m. - 7.00 p.m., Saturdays 8.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.; from 1 July to 31 August, Monday to Saturday 8.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. Guided tours by arrangement. Further information about lectures and exhibitions can be found at the library’s homepage.

Further information

Please contact Antonietta Botteghi, Elena De Carolis.
Tel: 00 39 054 151105
Fax: 00 39 054 126167
E-mail: gambalunghiana@comune.rimini.it or Gambalunga@provincia.rimini.it
Website: http://www.bibliotecagambalunga.it/

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience from it.
 resources/links_to_other_resources/biblioteca_civica_gambalunga.txt · Last modified: 2012/08/31 09:57 by



Recent changes RSS feed Valid XHTML 1.0 Driven by DokuWiki