It was designed by the Danish architect Theophil Freiherr von Hansen. As part of his famous Trilogy of Neo-Classical Buildings including the Academy of Athens and the original building of the Athens University. It was founded by Ioannis Kapodistrias.
The original idea for establishing the National Library was from the philhellene Johann Jakob Mayer. In result to a newspaper article by Mayer, Ioannis Kapodistrias grouped together as one project the National Library with other intellectual institutions such as schools, national museums, and printing houses.
The National Library has 4,500 Greek Manuscripts which is one of the greatest collection of Greek scripts. There are also many chrysobulls and archives of the Greek Revolution.
Important to mention is that among the library’s holdings are a Codex of the Four Gospels attributed to the scribe Matthew. Also, uncial codex with a fragment Gospel of Matthew from 6th century, Flora Graeca Sibthorpiana by English botanist John Sibthorp; Rigas’ Chart by Rigas Velestinlis. most impresivly there are The Large Etymological Dictionary, a historic Byzantine dictionary; and the First Publication of Homer’s epics and hymns.
See the National library with one of our tours:
- Athens Morning Sightseeing Tour With Visit Of Acropolis of Athens and New Acropolis Museum
- Athens Afternoon Sightseeing Tour With Visit Of Acropolis and Parthenon – April till October
- 7 Day Combined Tour Package to Athens City and Santorini Island
- 7 Day Combined Tour Package to Athens City and Mykonos Island
- 8 Day Combined Tour Package to the Islands and Historical Sites of Greece
- Athens By Night Tour With Folklore Show and Dinner