THE ROYAL PUBLIC LIBRARY OF HANOVER
The Royal Public Library of Hanover was founded by Duke JohnFrederick about the year 1660.It has been successively augmented by the acquisition of the following among other less important collections: – In 1678 that of M. Fogel of Hamburgh; in 1696, that of Westenholz; about 1698, that of the Elector Ernest Augustus ; in 1716, that of Leibnitz; in 1729, that of GW Molanus; in 1750, that of the late Duke of Cambridge , who bequeathed a Library of considerable value – especially well provided with books and MSS. relating to Hanover on condition that the works which were already possessed by the Royal Library should be transferred to the Town Library of the capital. The estimated number of volumes is, of printed books, upwards of 80,000; and of MSS., about 2000. The strength of the collection lies in the departments of History and Politics, and the MSS. are of considerable value. Of late years more liberal access has been permitted than formerly existed.
The chief attraction of the Hanover Library is its collection of the papers of Leibnitz, consisting of his correspondence. Besides his own letters, there are a great many letters of the eminent persons to whom he wrote. “His correspondence”, says Dr. Noehden , “was most extensive; and, what is surprising in a man so much occupied, it seems that he generally copied his letters, and not infrequently transcribed the same composition two or three times. Those in the Library are, for the most part, the first arrangements. There was scarcaly any one of his contemporaries of celebrity, with whom he had not an epistolary intercourse. A great many of the letters are written in French, and in Latin; some in other languages. One of his most distinguished correspondents was the Electoress of Hanover, the Princess Sophia , mother of George l.