University of Barcelona

The Rare Book and Manuscript CRAI Library of the University of Barcelona is located in the historical building of the university in the city center. Its importance derives from the size and quality of the collection it houses. Following the passing of ecclesiastical confiscation laws in 1835, Barcelona’s library collections from convents were brought together at the University to create a major public library. They were very rich collections that received important bequests from the Catalan people.

Today, these items are the core pieces in the CRAI Rare Book and Manuscript collection, which has been expanded by other acquisitions. The books of the suppressed University of Cervera, a set of engravings and parchments, the collection of the Royal College of Medicine and Surgery of Barcelona and some donations, such as the Grewe collection on food and gastronomy.

The library guards 2,150 manuscripts, 1,240 incunabula copies from 830 different editions, more than 11,300 editions from the 16th century, 22,000 from the 17th century and 31,000 from the 18th century. From the 16th century to the beginning of the 19th century, there are approximately twice as many copies.

The online catalogue provides access to a great part of the collection, but other manual catalogues still have to be consulted in the library or through a PDF version.

There are two databases that were created and maintained during the cataloging process of the library stock, Former owners and Printers’ devices, which are also integrated into the CERL Thesaurus.

The BiPaDi (Biblioteca Patrimonial Digital) is the website where all digitized books are distributed in different collections.

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