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Modern Papers and Autographs

The collection of bequests and modern papers, which comprises almost 1000 names today, was also founded in the year 1558 with the purchase of the handwritten personal papers of the Orientalist Johann Albrecht Widmanstetter. Until the beginning of the 19th century, the personal papers of approximately 200 persons were added, among them for example the scholars' letters of the 16th and 17th century of the collection Camerarius, which were acquired with the transfer of the Mannheim court library. Romanticism and positivism brought the heyday of collecting modern papers in their wake. The holdings have been continuously expanded until today, and are regularly presented in  exhibitions
The holdings encompass all areas of artistic, scholarly and public life. The bequeathed personal papers accumulated in the course of a human life and - on an equal organisational level - the collections started by the library which expressly focus on one single person and which are systematically complemented by purchases, are from poets, visual artists, architects, composers, from scholars of all humanistic and a great number of scientific disciplines, as well as from Bavarian kings and statesmen. Special mention should be made of Aventinus, Alban Berg, Wolfgang Fortner, Karl von Frisch, Oskar Maria Graf, Leo von Klenze, Alfred Kubin, Orlando di Lasso, Justus von Liebig, Ludwig I and Ludwig II of Bavaria, Hans von Marées, Max von Pettenkofer, Max Scheler, Karl Spitzweg, Adalbert Stifter, Richard Strauss, Paul Ludwig Troost and Richard Wagner.
The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek regards the documentation of the cultural and public life in Bavaria as a paramount task. However, about one quarter of the collections goes beyond this regional framework and comprises materials both of other German poets and scholars - in this context, mention should be made of Johann Heinrich Voss and Immanuel Kant - and of the Italian humanists Petrus Victorius and Angelus Politianus or of French personalities of the 17th to the 19th century.
The holdings of modern papers are complemented by a collection of single autographs, started in 1858 and currently comprising about 35,000 items, which is characterised by an identically broad spectrum of purchases from point of view of time, space and subject matter.

 Catalogues (German)