The New International Encyclopædia/Ambrosian Library

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The New International Encyclopædia
Ambrosian Library
Edition of 1905. See also Biblioteca Ambrosiana on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

AMBRO'SIAN LI'BRARY. A famous library in Milan, so named in honor of St. Ambrose, the patron saint of the city. It was founded in 1602 by Cardinal Federigo Borromeo, who, in 1609, formally opened it to the public. The library contains upward of 175,000 printed volumes and 8400 manuscripts, some of them of great value. Among the latter the chief treasures are a Greek Pentateuch of the fifth century; several palimpsest texts, including an early Plautus; fragments of Ulfilas's Gothic translation of the Bible; the celebrated Codex Atlanticus, containing original drawings and MSS. by Leonardo da Vinci, and a copy of Vergil, with marginal notes by Petrarch.