BPH Collection has been added to the Unesco Memory of the World Register

Press release 1 November 2022 - Collection Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica has been added to the Unesco Memory of the World Register.

DUTCH MEMORY OF THE WORLD REGISTER

The Netherlands has a new heritage list, the Dutch Memory of the World Register. On Tuesday 1 November, our country's Memory of the World Committee decided to place eight heritage collections on this list.

Unesco has had the global Memory of the World Register since the early 1990s. Sixteen documentary heritage items with a (partly) Dutch background are registered on it (status Oct 2022). In addition to this global list, regional and national registers are also possible.

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Unesco programme, the Dutch Memory of the World Register has been created, which will include exceptional documentary heritage items with a strong Dutch appeal. Chairman Martin Berendse of the Dutch Memory of the World Committee says: "With this register, we put the spotlight on some very diverse collections and pieces. This helps us realize how special and diverse our Dutch documentary heritage is."

On Friday 4 November, all institutions with entries on the new register will be visited. In honor of the placement, they will receive the special Unesco Memory of the World Flag. It will be a festive journey across the Netherlands, ending in Middelburg from Leeuwarden, via Amsterdam, The Hague and Rotterdam.

RECOGNITION OF THE COLLECTION

On 1 November, Unesco announced the addition of the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica collection (BPH) to the Unesco Memory of the World Register.

Lucinda Martin, director of the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica and the Ritman Research Institute:

"The recognition of the library's unique collection by Unesco will certainly help to give the library, the place it deserves.

The aim of the library is to show what the role of the Hermetic tradition has been in history, including the special contribution of the Netherlands as protector of free speech and free conscience.

These are works that are not only intrinsically important but have also often made an important contribution to Dutch national identity and to modern ideas about Human Rights."

The Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica collection has about 29,000 books and manuscripts, including about 7,500 books printed before 1800. Recognizing the importance of the collection, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science took ownership of part of the collection in 2005. These 4,500 books and 320 manuscripts are currently kept at Allard Pierson, part of the University of Amsterdam.