Recently I got into a somewhat frustrating exchange on a local newspaper forum regarding the funding of the largest public library in our area. The gentleman who I was debating with thought that libraries should be funded by private monies alone, with none from the city or state. This was not the hottest point I argued that night.
He went on to say that the Internet has struck libraries obsolete. I will admit to being a bit of a library lover. There is something about the feel and smell of the thousands of bound treasures on the shelves that give me pleasure. If the Internet has done anything to the libraries, it has made them somewhat unruly as most of the branches provide access to the net within the library. Some of these patrons are inconsiderate of the staff and other people trying to study and enjoy.
Shortly thereafter I saw this on the net.
At one time not so terribly long ago in history, libraries were held in as high regard by academia as the cathedrals were by the clergy. In fact the clergy was responsible for some of the first libraries ever.
The Church built grand cathedrals of astonishing beauty inspired by the pursuit of Heaven.
Academia built libraries on just as grand a scale inspired by the pursuit of knowledge.
Here are some of the most beautiful, courtesy of Curious Expeditions. Enjoy!
Librophiliac Love Letter: A Compendium of Beautiful Libraries