News

Vatican library will digitize its archive and put them online

Vatican library will digitize its archive and put them online

DIGITIZED: An Aztec calendar, from the Codex Borgianus Mexicanus is seen at the Vatican in this March 20, handout released by Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana. Photo: Reuters

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The Vatican library began a project on Thursday to digitize thousands of historical manuscripts, dating from the origins of the Church to the 20th century, and make them available online.

Working with the Japanese technology group NTT Data, the library intends to scan and digitally archive about 1.5 million pages from the library’s collection of manuscripts, which comprises some 82,000 items and 41 million pages. The initial project will take four years and may be extended.

The Vatican library dates from the late 14th century and forms one of the world’s most important collections of historical documents. It includes 1.6 million books and large coin and picture collections as well as its manuscript archives.

“The manuscripts that will be digitized extend from pre-Columbian America to China and Japan in the Far East, passing through all the languages and cultures that have marked the culture of Europe,” said Monsignor Jean-Louis Brugues, archivist and librarian of the Holy Roman Church.

The library will use NTT scanners to record the manuscripts and archive software to manage the collection. Technicians from the Japanese company will work alongside Vatican librarians.

“At the end of the four years, the involvement of NTT could lead to a further phase of engagement which could cover the entire collection,” said Monsignor Cesare Pasini, prefect of the library.

NTT is donating the equipment and the work of its technicians. The initial phase of the operation, worth some 18 million euros (15.16 million pounds), is expected to cover some 3,000 handwritten documents over a four-year period, NTT said.

(Reporting by Antonio Denti; Editing by Larry King)

Recent Headlines

in Sports

NFL: Patriots likely deliberately deflated balls, Brady ‘generally aware’

deflategate

The investigation into "DeflateGate" is finally over and reveals what many people suspected.

in Sports, Viral Videos

WATCH: ‘Super’ soccer mascot is super drunk

14-overlay

CAUGHT ON CAMERA: Austria Vienna's mascot - a cape-wearing lion named "Super Leo" - has fallen and he can't get up.

in Lifestyle

Grown kids using tech to keep tabs on aging parents

camera

It wasn't long ago that tech-savvy parents used baby monitors and nanny cams to keep tabs on their offspring. Now, the tables have turned.

in National, Sports

Boston bomber volunteered as family fell apart, jurors told

bostonbombing

Lawyers seeking to spare convicted Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev from the death penalty called witnesses who described his volunteer work, his adoration of his older brother, and his father's mental illness in the years before the attack.

in Entertainment, Sports

Ride LeBron’s charity roller coaster

lebronjames

Sixty-four people anted up around $10,000 for the NBA star's charity, and the privilege of getting the first ride on a new roller coaster at Cedar Point.