The new contemporary building of the Gazi Husrev Bey Library opened yesterday with the Grand Ceremony in Sarajevo.

The ceremony was attended by many guests from political, scientific, cultural and public life of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as by delegates of the State of Qatar, which provided 13 million KM (app. 9 million US $) to help build this contemporary building in the heart of the capital city of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Among distinguished guests who attended the ceremony were Qatar's Waqf Minister Gajs bin Mubarek el-Kuwari, Reisu-l-ulema IC in BiH Husein ef. Kavazović, Member of the BiH Presidency Bakir Izetbegović, Prime Minister of the Federation of BiH Nermin Nikšić, Head of EU Delegation to BiH and EU Special Representative Peter Sorensen and High Representative Valentin Inzko.

image The entrance of the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo / © Photo: Islamic Arts Magazine

The Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo, founded in 1537, represents one of the oldest cultural institutions in Europe. Its founder was the Ottoman governor Gazi Husrev Bey, of Bosnian origin, who besides the library built the central Sarajevo mosque known as the Gazi Husrev Bey Mosque and the Gazi Husrev Bey Madrasa, as well as many other institutions.

The library has been, for centuries, located in the building of the Madrasa, and for the past hundred years has often changed locations, none of them appropriate for the preservation of the large number of manuscripts. Given that the library was particularly vulnerable in the 90s, during the aggression on Bosnia and Herzegovina by Serbia and Montenegro, the idea of having a dedicated building for its accommodation became essential.

Apart from accommodation of books and manuscripts, the library constitutes of many spaces like a large congress room, rooms for research and reading, restoration laboratories and a museum, with hi-tech equipment.

Gazi Husrev Bey Library is one of the largest libraries of oriental manuscripts in Europe and the library with the largest collection of Ottoman manuscripts outside of Turkey. The library has over 10,000 manuscripts in Arabic, Persian and Turkish language as well as manuscripts written in Bosnian language, with Arabic script. Especially valuable is its art collection, which contains in addition to illuminated manuscripts and a collection of rugs also clothes from the Ottoman period, works in metal and wood as well as other artefacts.

Prior to the Grand Opening of the Gazi Husrev Bey Library the special exhibition of some of the manuscripts was shown to the public. We are presenting some of them.

Some of the Manuscripts from the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo

image Manuscripts from the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo / © Photo: Islamic Arts Magazine

image Manuscript from the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo / Al Mufid (Sarh Pand-i Attar) by Abdl Abdurrahman Ziri 1103/1691, Copied by Isma'il 1064/1654 / © Photo: Islamic Arts Magazine

image Manuscript from the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo / © Photo: Islamic Arts Magazine

image Manuscript from the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo / Divani-i-Hafiz by Samsuddin Muhammad Hafiz Shirazi 921/1389, copied in the 16th century / © Photo: Islamic Arts Magazine

image Manuscript from the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo, detail / © Photo: Islamic Arts Magazine

image Illuminated Manuscript from the Gazi Husrev Bey Library in Sarajevo, detail / © Photo: Islamic Arts Magazine

Full presentation of the Gazi Husrev Bey Library will follow soon.


Comments
  • hsanakiani
    Feb 03, 2014 - 11:28:32

    Ma-Shaa-Allah, nice Islamic Art.

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