Gennadius Library (ASCSA-G)

The Gennadius Library, opened in 1926, offers a rich mine of rare books as well as research collections, archives, and manuscripts for the study of Byzantine, Ottoman, and contemporary Greece. At the core of the Library is the 26,000-volume personal collection of the 19th century bibliophile, scholar, and diplomat, John Gennadius, who donated it with the understanding that the School would house it and keep it accessible to students and scholars. The original building was constructed with the assistance of the Carnegie Corporation and completed in 1926; since then the Library has expanded several times, first in the early 1970's, and since 1997 as part of a major campaign, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and many other organizations and individuals, including a 350-seat auditorium for the School's already active lecture and conference program.

The collection has grown to 105,000 volumes, as well as extensive archives documenting, in particular, the emergence of the modern Greek state after the Revolution of 1821 against the Ottoman Empire, southern Balkan politics and diplomacy, and modern Greek literature and art. The Library also holds a collection of rare maps, prints, drawings, and paintings, including over 200 watercolors of Greek landscapes by the 19th century artist, Edward Lear. In addition, the archives hold the papers of Greece's Nobel prize winners George Seferis and Odysseas Elytis. The Gennadius Library, which has approximately 12,000 reader visits per year, is linked electronically to the Blegen Library so that readers can take advantage of the Blegen's rich electronic resources.