The Belarusian State University Fundamental Library (BSU FL) was founded on October 30, 1921.

BSU FL is one of the oldest and biggest university libraries in the Republic of Belarus. 40 thousand books given by the People’s Commissariat for Enlightenment of the BSSR as well as additional 20 thousand books from the former Theological Seminary became the basis of its funds. In total the initial contributions of local stocks in the BSU FL funds was about 70 thousand volumes.

In 1922 in accordance with the BSSR Council of People’s Commissars’ decree the BSU FL was transformed into the Belarusian State and University Library, which combined functions of the state library with functions of the university library. As the library also performed functions of the central bibliographical institution in BSSR, the Belarusian Book Chamber (in 1924) and the Bibliographic Bureau (in 1925) were created at the library.

DETAILS

At present the universal BSU Fundamental Library‘s funds consist of above 2 million volumes of Belarusian, Russian and other languages’ literature. The Library has 846 readers’ places, 150 workers, 9 home loan departments, 15 departmental and specialized reading rooms, above 25,000 registered users, and provides more than 1,000,000 book loans annually. The annual library acquisitions is about 25,000 new editions. Annually it subscribes to above 400 titles of Belarusian and foreign periodicals, conducts international book exchange with 75 research and educational institutions located in CIS and far abroad.

Historically formed the fund of rare and valuable editions includes old-printed editions; collection of revolutionary press and the press of Soviet rule's first years; the first especially valuable and printed in authors’ lifetime editions of classical works of science, literature and arts; the editions, which can be patterns of artwork and polygraphic design; miniature and small editions; reprints and facsimile; the editions with autographs of well-known scientists, writers, poets, politicians, and professors of BSU; illegal and illicit pre-revolutionary editions; the editions that were returned from the department of special depositary; the best serial editions, books illustrated by famous artists; copies with bookplates and owners' stamps; copies with censorial correcting and marginalia.

Depositary funds of the United Nations Organization and the International Monetary Fund at the Fundamental library represent significant information and cultural value and give library users a chance to work with origins of UN and IMF documents and publications, statistical yearbooks, materials of conferences, seminars, symposiums, collections of agreements, periodicals in Russian and English languages.

Over a period of many decades the BSU Fundamental library is continuously the Republic Methodical Center for more than 50 libraries of Belarusian higher educational institutions.