Night of Museums 2015 at the National and University Library in Zagreb

Objavljeno 27.1.2015.

The National and University Library in Zagreb is inviting you to the already traditional, 10th, Croatian Night of Museums, which will this year be held on Friday, 30 January, from 18.00 to midnight, in more than one hundred Croatian museums, galleries and cultural institutions.

Night of Museums is a special programme organised by the Croatian Museum Association which brings together museums and galleries from all parts of Croatia.

The National and University Library in Zagreb is dedicating its 2015 Nights of Museums programme to the 400th anniversary of the publishing of Machinae novae, one of the most significant books in Croatian written heritage, written by Faust Vrančić, a Croatian polymath and advanced thinker at the turn of the 17th century. Except in Vrančić’s native Šibenik, the original copy of this exquisite book is also preserved in the Manuscripts and Old Books Collection of the National and University Library in Zagreb.

As part of the 2015 Night of Museums programme, the National and University Library in Zagreb will give its visitors an indeed rare opportunity to see the book’s original 1615 edition, a poster exhibition featuring some of the copperplate engravings included in this edition, documentary series dedicated to Vrančić and his fascinating constructions (Faust Vrančić: San o strojevima), and they will also be able to leaf through Machinae novae’s various reprints.

The Library’s rich Night of Museums programme will in a way announce the Library’s special Croatian Book Month programme, during which it will organise yet another exhibition and a series of workshops in order to bring this cultural and scientific treasure and major work of the Croatian Renaissance to the attention of both Croatian and international public. The Library will realise this programme in collaboration with the Faust Vrančić Memorial Centre from the Island of Prvić, Technical Museum in Zagreb and the Juraj Šižgorić City Library from Šibenik. It will be funded as part of the special 2014/2015 UNESCO programme supporting the marking of important anniversaries.

Machinae novae is one of the most significant works from the beginning of the 17th century in the field of technics. It gives the descriptions of 56 different inventions and technical constructions on 49 copperplate engravings, with the accompanying comments in Latin, Spanish, Italian, French and German.

This historical work has been composed as a manual-and-reference book and part of the constructions and devices it presents were devised by Vrančić. It also includes a number of less well-known devices and constructions by other authors, with all of them presented in chronological order.

During the Library’s Night of Museums programme visitors will be offered NUL souvenirs and publications at favourable prices.