In 2017, a cache of Jewish materials was discovered in the Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania. The discovery included a manuscript of „Tsen Lider“ („Ten Poems“), a collection written and compiled by Yiddish poet Avrom Sutzkever while living in the Vilna Ghetto. This unique manuscript includes variants of later published poems and preserves Sutzkever's original spelling and punctuation. Sutzkever's manuscript, along with the other materials found in 2017, are being digitized as part of the Edward Blank YIVO Vilna Online Collections Project.
The evening of 20 October saw the opening of the exhibition of publications and documents culminating the Year of the Vilna Gaon “Shenot Eliyahu / Elijah’s Years: the Impact of the Vilna Gaon on the Lithuanian Jewish Culture”. During the formal opening ceremony, the word shalom resounded time and again under the National Library’s vaults, a Hebrew word for wishing peace of mind and safety.
“The Torah herself spoke: I am the wisdom that has found refuge in the soul of Elijah, and through him I have become known throughout the world,” — this fragment of the epitaph, carved in the tombstone of Elijah ben Solomon Zalman, perfectly reveals the significance of this sage, better known as the Vilna Gaon, not only to the Jewish culture of Lithuania, but also to the whole world. Therefore, commemorating the year of Vilna Gaon and Lithuanian Jewish history, announced by the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania, the Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania prepared an exhibition, “Shenot Eliyahu/Elijah’s Years: The impact of Vilna Gaon on Lithuanina Jewish Culture” consisting of publications and documents.
In marking the significant role of the Jews of Lithuania and the vast influence of their diverse activities and culture during the entire history of the State of Lithuania from the middle of the 13th Century to the present day, the Seimas of Lithuania has declared 2020 the Year of the Vilna Gaon and of the History of the Jews of Lithuania.
Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania invites visitors to the exhibition, displaying the works of the library workers.
On 17–20 August, Lithuania hosted the seminar of the national libraries of the Baltic countries LiLaEst2020, which took place in the Molėtai Region. This seminar is a biennial gathering of library professional from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. The Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania was represented by a team of the Library’s staff under the supervision of the Director General Prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas.
The National Library of Lithuania congratulates its partner, the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, upon the landmark event: the launching the first exhibition of its YIVO Bruce and Francesca Cernia Slovin Online Museum: Beba Epstein: The Extraordinary Life of an Ordinary Girl.
Dear visitors, please be reminded that the National Library is closed during public holidays so it will not be open to the public on the 15th of August. The Library’s opening hours are one hour shorter on a day before a public holiday thus our Library will be open until 8:00 pm on the 14th of August.
The Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania complies at all times with the security and disinfection requirements for public premises, as established by the Government, and therefore there are certain restrictions to our usual physical services. We would like to thank the library visitors in advance for their understanding and behaving responsibly when visiting.
The 7th of August of 1925 ninety-five years ago saw the start of the conference of Europe’s Jewish intellectuals, which announced the establishment of the Jewish Scientific Institute. Several months after that, the Institute started to operate in Vilnius under the abbreviated name YIVO and before long, it became a centre of attraction for the world’s Jewish diaspora. The Institute conducted innovative research in all humanitarian domains, collected a vast documentary archive and scholarly library and provided postgraduate degrees for young people from Europe and America. YIVO much contributed to the strengthening of Vilnius’s reputation as a hub of the Jewish intellectual potential. The Institute had its branches and departments in other countries (USA, Poland, Argentine, etc.). During World War II, the operation of YIVO was savagely disrupted and a great number of its team lost their lives. All functions of YIVO were taken over by its New York Branch, which has been operating as the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research up to the present day.
The exhibition hall of the Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania transports the visitors into the Dreams for Everyday by one of the most original Vilnius-based artists Ina Budrytė (b. 1957). The exhibition under the title features a selection by the exhibition curator Raminta Jurėnaitė together with the artist of as many as 90 paintings on paper and an entire collection of small sketches in pencil from 1990 through 2020.
For the summer period, single artwork gallery apiece is moving from Vilnius to Palanga Summer Reading Room (part of Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania). From July to September it will be hosting three exhibitions of contemporary visual art which will be available to viewers 24/7.
Virginijus Vitalijus Vilkelis, Head of the Department of Mobilisation and Civil Resistance under the Ministry of National Defence, awarded Prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas, Director General of Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania for the public spirit initiatives of the National Library and its support to the state in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.
Please be informed that from 1st of July to 30th of August the National Library will switch to summer opening hours.
Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania invites you to the joint exhibition “The Flowers of Blue Deeps” featuring the paintings of Danguolė Raudonikienė (b. 1937) and composer Dalia Raudonikytė With (1970–2018).
Dear visitors! Please be informed that from the 1st of June National Library’s opening hours will be as usual.
The Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania guarantees compliance with all the requirements for safety and disinfection of the public premises set by the Government and, therefore, its traditional physical services are provided with restrictions that apply until 31st May. We expect awareness and responsibility from the part of the visitors.
Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania presents the exhibition “The History of the Golden Compass: Books by the Officina Plantiniana Throughout the Centuries” commemorates the 500th anniversary of the birth of Christophe Plantin (1520-1589), the founder of the famous publishing house, the Officina Plantiniana.
With the quarantine conditions being eased by the Government of the Republic of Lithuania, the National Library opens for its visitors the increasing number of spaces and opportunities to work and study.