The Parliament : The Library : About the Library

About the Library

History

The Library of the Hellenic Parliament was founded during the first Parliamentary Session following the 1844 Constitution. Since then its purpose has been to support the work of the Parliament. In 1846, Georgios Tertsetis a scholar and jurist from Zante (Ionian Islands) was elected the Library and Archives director. During his office, the institution became a leading centre of letters of the time.

However, the development of the Library of the Parliament owes a lot to Timoleon Philemon, member of the Parliament representing Attica, lawyer and publisher of the newspaper Aion (i.e. Century). In 1875, Philemon was elected Treasurer of the Parliament and during his tenure (1875-1887) he achieved to increase the number of the Library volumes from 5.000 to 100.000 by inviting foreign and domestic grants. Nikolaos Politis was entrusted with the cataloguing and classifying, adapting the Munich Public Library classification system according to the Library’s demands.

For a series of years, the Parliament Library kept on being moved from one building to another, until 1934, when it was eventually housed at the second floor of the Old Palace building, freshly renovated to fit a modern Parliament.

Today, due to the large volume of its collections and its numerous activities, the Library of the Hellenic Parliament is housed in more than one buildings: a) the Main Library at the Parliament Building, b) Benakeios Library at Anthimou Gazi St. 2, which is temporarily hosted at the former Public Tobacco Factory Building and c) the former Public Tobacco Factory at Lenormant St. 218.