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Ελληνικές βιβλιοθήκες και αναγνωστήρια στην πόλη των Σερρών κατά την όψιμη τουρκοκρατία

  • The city of Serres developed a great cultural activity and it was one of the most important educational centres of Macedonian Hellenism during the late centuries of the Ottoman rule. What was needed was the establishment of school, associational-public Libraries and Reading-rooms as well. The oldest reference about a pre-Revolutionary Library in the city is in a note, which had been written by the bishop Gabriel (1735-1754) on the Code of the Metropolis of Serres -that is lost today- in the second quarter of the 18th century and it has to do with the Greek School of Serres. This precious Code gives us information about the organization of a Library that was founded by the schoolteacher Argyrios Paparizos, who had spent a large amount for buying books (1828). The wise schoolteacher Emmanuel Fotiadis of Serres also enriched the Library with didactical books (1837-1843). The second school of the city, which continues the historical route of the Greek School of Serres, is the six-year High School (which is recognized since 1884). We have more information about its well-stocked Library. The headmasters had presented a great interest in the registration of the manuscripts of the collection; a few of the manuscripts date the Byzantine period. The Library of the Teachers College -the first in European Turkey- was founded in 1872 by the "Macedonian Pro-educational Association of Serres" (1870) and it was really remarkable. The second Library of the same Association had a public character and it also had a book guard. The classification of its books was excellent. The unique Reading-rooms ("Anagnostirion") in the city of Serres offered the habitants' popular, amusing or educational printed subject, newspapers and magazines. The three Associations: the "Macedonian Pro-educational" (1870), the "Ourania" (1874) and the Club of Serres (before 1903) owned these Reading-rooms. The magnificent building of the Association "Orpheas" (1905) had a central theatrical hall, three large rooms for the teaching of music and dramatic recitation. These rooms were also used as a Library and a Reading-room. Our knowledge involving the historical Libraries and the Reading-rooms of this ancient Macedonian city would have been richer today, if the sensitive material of their collections had not been burnt twice during the catastrophic fires (1849 and 1913), which destroyed the Greek part of the city completely, or even if the written monuments of the city had been saved from the ruinations and the sacks by our northern neighbours.
  • Σαμσάρης, Πέτρος Κ.
  • 2003
  • Conference Paper
  • PeerReviewed
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