The hidden treasures of the world's ancient Library: the Verona Capitolare

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The Capitolare Library of Verona is the ancient working library in the world.. Charlemagne’s son, Pipino, Dante Alighieri, Francesco Petrarca and many others studied here.

Having survived an earthquake, the plague, Napoleon rubles, the 1882 flood and the bombs (Thanks to some enlightened German officers who rescued some tomes), the Capitular Library, named as the "Queen of ecclesiastical collections" by the paleographer Elias Avery Lowe, carries a treasure of over 1.200 manuscripts, 245 incunabula, 2.500 books from the 1500s, 2.800 books from the 1700s and another 70 thousand volumes, as well as ancient printings, paintings, musical instruments and more.

Closely linked to the library there is the pinacoteca del Capitolo dei Canonici, an absolutely unknown corner of Verona, which retains treasures of extraordinary beauty. The project intends to join the two realities, in order to make them available to the citizenship and to the visitors leading them to the discovery of a unique and invaluable patrimony up to now hidden.

Books resisting the test of time are usually resisting the test of touch: whoever touches these books, the poet said, touches a man. (Manuel Neila)

This "Library and Museum", which is above all a common good, urgently needs interventions to guarantee that the precious treasures inside it can be made accessible to all and valued in the long term for future generations: A gesture, it’s a matter of sharing a common dream that involves everyone. And that's what we want to do here.

“The hidden treasures of the ancient library in the world: la Capitolare di Verona” è un progetto di crowdfunding civico dedicato alla raccolta fondi per la sopravvivenza e la valorizzazione di quella che è stata da poco riconosciuta, come la Biblioteca più antica al mondo. Ma è anche un modo per dare a tutti la possibilità di contribuire, facendo si che la Capitolare possa diventare un luogo al centro della vita sociale e culturale della città.

Crowdfunding is promoted by the Capitolare Biblioteca of Verona, and is made possible thanks to:

Foundation Discanto, coordinator and leader of the project, with a great experience in cultural, social, environmental and tourist design, also intended for the recovery of historical assets. Working for this foundation, there are professionals who are specialized in the management of cultural goods.

Avviamoci srl, owner of the Crowdfunding website called Avviamoci, which will be made available for fundraising.

Scripta srl, a company specialized in the field of communication and publishing, especially in the artistic and cultural field.

Main Partners: Discanto Academy.

With the patronage of: Municipality of Verona.

Technical sponsor: Entiria spa, Italpollina spa, Studio Protecno.

What is our goal?

The goal is to collect at least 330.000 through donations, sponsorships and initiatives.

Fundraising aims to be the first step of for a more ambitious project aiming, through managerial and professional management, to promote the best value, fruition and accessibility to the Capitular Library and its treasures, in order to become a living place for the people of Verona, opened for them, for the Italians and the international visitors, at any time of the year.

The deep desire of the Capitular is to become a dynamic space, an educational and multimedia place, a research institute , training site for the service of those who will attend it. Un luogo accogliente, dove trovare gli strumenti per arricchire le proprie conoscenze.

Without any doubt, the Capitular Library will keep unchanged the nature of an extraordinary point of reference of historical sources of inestimable value, at the service of researchers and scholars, della ricerca e degli studiosi.

Thanks to the achievement of the objectives, through the fundraising, an adjustment of the consultation room is planned, to ensure absolute tranquility and confidentiality for scholars.

As far as the museum is concerned, there are three areas , that are closely interconnected:

  • The area dedicated to exhibitions and temporary exhibitions;

  • The educational area for workshops and courses especially devoted to students of schools, structured according to ages in collaboration with teachers;

  • A section devoted to the "digital and interactive museum”, constantly updated and renewed.

Once the crowdfunding has been completed (30 June 2018), the goal will be achieved, and the work for the upgrading of the Library and Museum will start. The works will include the adaptation of security facilities, the abolition of architectural barriers and the complete renovation of the rooms for the enjoyment of the visitors.

In 2018 the opening date of the "new face of the Capitular Library" will be announced and promoted and, for the occasion, there will be a temporary exhibition opened to the public.

How do we intend to reach it?

Through crowdfunding, appunto, the innovative fundraising method on the web (but not only!) that allows everyone to contribute to a project, based on their own possibilities.

The Reward Crowdfunding is the most widespread model, in Italy and worldwide, thanks to its ability to remunerate the Supporter, although in a symbolic way, with emotional or material rewards, normally worth less than the donation. This means that people participate, donating sums of money to support projects, and receive in return "a reward". Therefore, gifts will be given to those who contribute to fundraising.

Do you know that the Statue of Liberty was also funded by crowdfunding? Well, that was not the case, but the principle was already that: over 120,000 subscriptions to support a common project (in 1884!).

How can you contribute?

You can contribute directly here on the site; ; choose how much you donate and remember to keep up-to-date on the developments following the facebook Biblioteca Capitolare Verona and the site

All the money collected will go directly to the Capitolare Library of Verona and it will be invested primarily to make the Library secure and accessible, then to make it become more multimedia and accessible to all the categories of users.

Any doubt, questions? Check out our FAQ. You can also contribute by proposing initiatives and events to enhance the Capitular; to do so, write to [email protected]

Instead, if you are a company or an institution, you can sponsor the project with a special contribution. For more information, write to: [email protected]

Of course, a good help is just to talk about it! With your friends and family, inviting them to donate and share socially their cooperation. Word of mouth!

Why the Capitular of Verona?

Because this year a Library Code became 1500 years old and this makes it possible to state that it is the oldest in the world. ecause the patrimony has a treasure of over 1.200 manuscripts, 245 incunabula, 2.500 books from the 1500s, 2.800 books from the 1700s and another 70 thousand volumes, as well as ancient printings, paintings, musical instruments and more.

Because the Capitular aims to become a center for the social and cultural life of the city and can, through this fundraising, initiate a consecration of it as a Library-Museum, while maintaining the academic arena, which will, in fact, be further safeguarded and valorised.

How can I stay up to date on the project?

Here, in the "News and Events" section, updates, photos, and videos will be published on the activities that will have the Capitolare Library as the protagonist. You will also be able to follow us on social, share our pictures, watch our videos.

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