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The Last of the Great Chained Libraries: « In the Middle Ages, books were incredibly scarce, and although many wanted to share knowledge with the masses, they didn't quite trust the public. So the chained library was born, and while most of these restrained reading collections have vanished, a rare few still exist, looking much as they did centuries ago. » http://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/chained-libraries-of-the...
« Despite the slight air of ‘mistrust’, there is still a strong sense of community that underlines the creation of such libraries. In Zutphen, for example, sixty keys to the front door of the library were issued, not only to the canons, but also to the townspeople—creating easier access to the books. The Malaestiana Library was also the dream of a nobleman, who wished to build a library open for everyone, and keys to the library were given to both the monks, as well as town officials. So despite the rather austere measures enacted to prevent book-theft, these chained libraries were very much the product of a collective desire to share books with the entire community—truly the world’s first public libraries. » https://medievalfragments.wordpress.com/2013/05/10/the-last-o... ‎· Faruk Ahmet

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