National Library of Azerbaijan
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Main entrance and building of the library
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The Mirza Fatali Akhundov National Library of Azerbaijan (Azeri: Mirzə Fətəli Axundov adına Azərbaycan Milli Kitabxanası) is a central state library of Azerbaijan, located in Baku and founded in 1922. It is named after Mirza Fatali Akhundov, an Azerbaijani dramatist and philosopher. The library overlooks the Khagani Street, Rashid Behbudov Avenue and the Nizami Street. Its facades feature the statues of various writers and poets: Nizami Ganjavi, Mahsati, Uzeyir Hajibeyov, Shota Rustaveli, Alexander Pushkin and several others.
A vast, eight-stage repository occupies the four floors of the building and is equipped with special elevators, which deliver the books to the outlets. The capacity of reading rooms is 500 seats. Orders are also accepted by e-mail upon electronic registration.
Founded in 1922, the library moved to its current location on May 23, 1923. The building was designed by Azerbaijani architect Mikayil Huseynov. It was initially known as the General Library and State Book Storage of Azerbaijan. On July 11, 1939 the library gained its present name. In 1962, the library was finally granted permission to create exchange ties with the Bibliothèque nationale de France. In 2005, in accordance with the decree issued by the Cabinet of Azerbaijan, the library took the name Akhundov Azerbaijan National Library. In 2005, it joined the Conference of European National Librarians.
Today, the building houses books, printed materials, newspapers, maps, dissertations and records, including copies of all the newspapers published during the Soviet period. It receives four copies of every new book and two copies of every magazine and newspaper published in Azerbaijan. The library, the only one of its kind, has microfilm and photos of newspapers published in Azerbaijan before the Bolshevik Revolution.
- Meet Me at the Akhundov by Leyla Gafurova. Azerbaijan International Magazine. #8.2. Summer 2000