AAR Library, (AAR-L)

The Library of the American Academy in Rome contains over 140,000 volumes, chiefly in the fields of Classical studies and the history of art and architecture. Especially strong are the collections in Classical archaeology and art, Greek and Latin literature, ancient topography (including the history of the city of Rome), ancient religions and related fields such as epigraphy, numismatics and papyrology. There is a good working collection in the history of art and architecture, especially Italian. The rare book collection comprises chiefly 16th-18th century imprints in classical studies, archaeology, art and architecture, including sizeable collections of Roman guidebooks and early art treatises. The library also houses small but noteworthy collections in contemporary art and architecture, landscape architecture, Italian history, American literature, historical travel literature, and music.

The Library acquires approximately 2,000 volumes per year and subscribes to approximately 600 current periodicals. Preference in acquisitions is given to scholarly publications in the core subjects listed above. A special priority is given to publications from the United States, in the conviction that the Academy has a responsibility to represent the best of American scholarship to Rome's multinational community. Italian local and regional publications in the Library's main fields, often difficult to obtain in the United States, are another acquisitions priority. The Academy Library welcomes gifts, especially the publications of its Fellows and readers. There is an active Friends of the Library program on both sides of the Atlantic.

The library is open stack and contains working space for approximately 80 persons. The heart of the Library is the Arthur Ross Reading Room, with handsome wooden shelving and furniture designed by McKim, Mead " White. The collections range over five stack levels. Books are non circulating outside the confines of the Academy. The Library offers access to selected databases, photocopiers, microreaders, copy stands and areas for computer use. The Barbara Goldsmith Rare Book Room, designed by Michael Graves, FAAR'62, RAAR'79, was dedicated in June 1996. Another significant resource is the Academy's Photographic Archive, which contains valuable documentation of Roman monuments, as well as a record of the work of past Rome Prize Fellows.

Over 50 readers use the Library every day. The main users of the Library are the Fellows and Residents of the American Academy, but reading passes are also issued to Italian scholars, qualified Roman residents and Visiting Artists and Scholars. Persons applying for a reading pass are generally expected to have a graduate degree and to bring a letter of introduction, but exceptions are made for the use of publications not available elsewhere.

The Academy is a founding member of URBS, the Unione Romana Biblioteche Scientifiche (Union of Scholarly Libraries in Rome), an association of sixteen research libraries with an onlineĀ union catalog.