Vilnius Manuscripts join World Digital Library

A raft of manuscripts from the Vilnius University Library has been added to the online collection of the World Digital Library.

The elegantly written manuscripts, penned in Old Belarussian and Polish, were created shortly after the so-called Union of Lublin of 1569, an event which cemented earlier, less far-reaching unions between Poland and Lithuania.

As the World Digital Library reflects, the Commonwealth [of Poland and Lithuania] had a highly developed legal and administrative system, based on local land courts that decided civil cases involving the gentry and castle courts that dealt with other land matters.

The WDL was founded in 2009 and is operated by UNESCO and the United States Library of Congress.

It currently counts over 4000 treasures in its collection, running the gamut from Japan's The Tale of the Genji, considered to be the world's first novel, to the first recording of La Marseillaise, France's national anthem.

Lithuania currently has 27 items online in the collection.


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