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Reading. Listening. Understanding. // Open Day at the German National Library // German National Library in Frankfurt am Main // Sunday, 26 May 2019, 10:00-17:00

Buchregal im Magazin

Take a look behind the scenes, from the top floor down to the extensive subterranean stacks. Get to know the German Music Archive, the German Exile Archive and the Deutsches Filminstitut! Meet the director!

We take you on a guided tour of the technical facilities, the data centre and our artworks. There is a treasure hunt for teens, discovery tours, and a workshop for children. On this day, people have the opportunity to learn about the world of digital media, inform themselves about the German National Library as an employer, and visit the exhibitions of the German Exile Archive. The programme is rounded off with curiosities from the collections and short readings by the actress Sarah C. Baumann, titled “Where books live – libraries in literature”. (Photo: Deutsche Nationalbibliothek, Stephan Jockel)

As part of the state-wide campaign “Ein Tag für die Literatur“ (A Day for Literature).

Free admission. Free tickets for every guided tour will be available on site from 10:00 onwards – as well as afternoon tickets from 13:00.

Programme of events

Gutenberg Prize awarded to Fonts for Freedom // Exhibition opening // German Museum of Books and Writing of the German National Library in Leipzig // Wednesday, 29 May 2019, 18:00

Logo FFF Fonts For Freedom

On 29 May, the City of Leipzig will again be presenting this year’s Gutenberg Prize in the German Museum of Books and Writing at the German National Library in Leipzig. For the first time in the sixty-year history of the Gutenberg Prize and 30 years after the Peaceful Revolution, the prize for 2019 will not be going to a single person. Instead, it will be awarded to the “Fonts for Freedom” initiative run by “Reporters Without Borders”.
Fonts for Freedom is reconstructing texts from daily newspapers that were banned and closed and placing them online free of charge for further use. In this way, the initiative is taking a stand against the increasing restriction of press freedom and freedom of expression all over the world. The speech commending “Fonts for Freedom” will be given by Karola Wille, Director of the broadcasting station MDR.

Free admission.

The German Museum of Books and Writing will be opening a small exhibition on “Fonts for Freedom” to accompany the award ceremony.

More about the exhibition.

Wave-Gotik-Treffen // Black Art and White Art // Guided tours of the exhibitions of the German Museum of Books and Writing // German National Library in Leipzig // 8 and 9 June 2019

Das Bild zeigt ein sogenanntes „Pangramm“, einen Spruch, der alle Buchstaben eines Alphabets beinhaltet. In diesem Fall in Englischer Sprache

To mark the 2019 Wave-Gotik-Treffen, the German Museum of Books and Writing at the German National Library in Leipzig is offering two special guided tours:
During the guided tour “Typo? Graphic. Tschichold!” of the current temporary exhibition “Jan Tschichold – a once-in-a-century typographer? Insights into his legacy”, you will learn about the colourful life and work of the Leipzig-born typographer.
See guided tour “Typo? Graphic. Tschichold!”

The themed guided tour “Black Art and White Art” takes you through the permanent exhibition “Signs – Books – Networks”, where you will learn how the black art of book printing found its way onto the white art of paper.
See themed guided tour “Black Art and White Art”

Anne Frank Day 2019 // Special guided tour of the German Exile Archive 1933–1945 // German National Library in Leipzig // Wednesday, 12 June 2019 at 11:00, 14:00 and 17:00

Logo "Anne Frank Tag 2019"

Anne Frank would have turned 90 this year. She is the namesake of the special library located within the German Exile Archive 1933–1945 in Leipzig, the Anne Frank Shoah Library.

At 11:00, 14:00 and 17:00 on Anne Frank Day, we are offering a one-hour guided tour of our special library. The focus will be on Anne Frank’s diary, which has been translated into more than 70 languages. Various editions of the famous diary will be presented.

Anne Frank Day is a project of the Anne Frank Centre in Berlin.

The number of participants is limited to 15. Book directly using the booking form or call +49 341 2271-286

Expanded services in the reading rooms of the German National Library

Buchscanner im Lesesaal der Deutschen Nationalbibliothek in Frankfurt am Main

The German National Library is improving its on-site user services. We are starting by improving our printing, copying and scanning services at our site in Frankfurt am Main. In future, readers will be able to use the scanners in the reading rooms not only to print out scans from print media, but also to save scans on a USB stick. Paper copies can now be made in black and white as well as colour at every printer.

These improvements also involve technical alterations to the invoicing system. Valid library cards can continue to be used for now. However, a new card will be issued in the following instances:

  • When you extend your library card,
  • Top up or pay out your credit,
  • Or want to print or scan something.

Further information about the expanded services (only available in German)

The devices in the user areas of the German National Library in Leipzig are scheduled to be updated in early June.

Gutenberg bible exhibited in Moscow // Russian State Library, Moscow // The exhibition can be viewed until 16 June 2019

Behutsames Blättern in der 42-zeiligen Gutenberg-Bibel - der B 42

In its exhibition “The Gutenberg Bible – The Dawning of a New Era”, the Russian State Library in Moscow is presenting the forty-two-line parchment bible (B 42) printed by Johannes Gutenberg that forms part of the collection once owned by the Dresden-based master tailor and publisher Heinrich Klemm, whose books are preserved in what is today the German Museum of Books and Writing in Leipzig. The bible has been kept in Moscow since 1945.

B 42 is one of 49 copies of this masterpiece from the era of incunabula still known to exist. It was printed between 1452 and 1454 in Mainz. It was last exhibited in Leipzig nearly 80 years ago. One of the particular features of the parchment copy is its illustrations, whose origins have yet to be researched. Alongside the forty-two-line parchment bible (B 42), the exhibition in Moscow will also present additional masterpieces of early printing and thereby provide fascinating insights into the history of media development in the mid-15th century. To mark the start of the exhibition, the Russian State Library has provided a digital version of the exhibited Gutenberg bible online, allowing the public to freely access this work of world heritage.

The exhibition is still available to view at the Russian State Library until 16 June 2019.

Additional Information


Dear users,
On Friday, 24 May 2019, between 15:00 and 18:00, the complete telephone system won’t be available due to maintenance works at the Frankfurt site.
We thank you for your understanding.


The German National Library in Leipzig will only open at 12:00 on Wednesday 29 May 2019 due to a staff assembly. The permanent exhibition of the German Museum of Books and Writing “Signs – Books – Networks”, the exhibition “Jan Tschichold – a once-in-a-century typographer?” and the showcase exhibition “Circus at the Printers. Czech Avant-Garde” can be viewed from the regular time of 10:00 onwards.


Changes to service hours at the Information desk in Frankfurt am Main:
Monday to Friday
The opening hours of the reading rooms and the issues desk in Frankfurt am Main are not affected by this.

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Schriftbanner mit Deutscher Nationalbibliothek Leipzig, Frankfurt am Main