University Library of Bern UB

Rare books

Bern Museum and Reading Society

Between 1897 and 1980, around 35,000 books from the Bern Museum and  Reading Society became part of the University Library Bern. The two societies were established in 1791 (Reading Society) and 1847 (Museum Society) and merged in 1941. The Reading Society experienced its heyday in the 19th century. A small literary association became a sophisticated entertainment library, semi public in nature. Half of the collection dates back to the 19th century, mostly travel books and fiction in German, French, English, and Italian.