Library Visit will take place Thursday 17th June 2010, from 14:30 to approx. 18:30.
The Palace of Mafra is among the most sumptuous Baroque buildings in Portugal and one of the biggest buildings constructed in Europe in the 18th century.
The palace was built symmetrically from a central axis, occupied by the basilica, and continues lengthwise through the main façade until two major towers. It includes a major library, with about 40,000 rare books.
The library, situated at the back of the second floor, is truly the highlight of this palace. It is 88 m long, 9.5 m wide and 13 m high. The magnificent floor is covered with tiles of rose, grey and white marble. The wooden bookshelves in Rococo style are situated on the sidewalls in two rows, separated by a balcony with a wooden railing. They contain over 35,000 leather-bound volumes, attesting of the extent of western knowledge from the 14th to the 19th century.
Besides natural techniques of conservation for the books, such as the lack of space between the wall and the book (so it doesn't create humidity), there are also a few bats that inhabit this library eating any insect that could destroy this invaluable treasure.
The Library Visit is included in the conference registration fee. Participation in the Library Visit has to be confirmed through the registration and hotel booking form.