The Ludwig-Wilhelm-Gymnasium - built in 1747 as a Piarist monastery and located opposite the castle church - is home to the Historical Library of the City of Rastatt. The library hall on the second floor of the old building now houses part of the valuable book collection. The hall is used as a room for the regular special exhibitions as well as for events. The former refectory - the "dining room" of the monastery - on the first floor houses further, extensive parts of the book collection and a permanent exhibition that provides insights into the history of the library. Here is also the scientific reading area.
Foundation by Margravine Sibylla Augusta in 1715
The Historical Library of the City of Rastatt is closely connected with the foundation of the Rastatt Piarist College by Margravine Sibylla Augusta in 1715. For the year 1716, the beginning of a book collection at this school can be proven. in 1808, the Rastatt Piarist School was united with the Lyceum of Baden-Baden (the successor institution to the Jesuit College founded there in 1642) to form the Grand Ducal Gymnasium Rastatt, which also merged the libraries of the two institutions. They subsequently formed the teachers' library of the Rastatt school, which has borne the name Ludwig-Wilhelm-Gymnasium since 1908. Since the 1960s, the library has been under municipal ownership, and since 1987 it has also fulfilled museum functions.
Stock of more than 80,000 media
The Historical Library has about 80,000 volumes. The oldest item in the library is a parchment fragment with a theological text, from the beginning of the 9th century, written in Alemannic minuscule. The collection includes medieval and modern manuscripts, more than 160 incunabula from the early days of printing in the second half of the 15th century, numerous prints, some of them rare and valuable, from the 16th to the 19th century, unique and first editions, books with original contemporary bindings and with illustrations by important masters of book art. Many of these books are directly related to historical figures, poets and writers as well as members of ruling houses or church dignitaries. The library also owns a very extensive collection of German school annuals with scientific supplements. Due to the size, age and structure of these holdings, the Historical Library, as a former school library, is today one of the five most important collections of its kind in Germany.
Mo, Di, Mi: 10 bis 12 Uhr
Di: 14 bis 15 Uhr
Erwachsene 4 Euro, ermäßigt 2 Euro
Eintritt frei am 1. Freitag im Monat
Führungen: 45 Euro (Mo-Fr), 55 Euro (Wochenende/Feiertage)