Voltaire's Library Project to Be Presented to Public Soon

A presentation of the Voltaire's Library project will take place in St. Petersburg at the Franco-Russian Club on June 20. The Voltaire's Library as part of the National Library of the Russian Federation includes about 7,000 books, many carrying notes in Voltaire's hand on the margins. There are also Voltaire's own manuscripts, notebooks, and drafts. The cultural and academic value of these materials is so high that the library adds much to the Voltaire's Studies Centre of the National Library of France.

The presentation is expected to be attended by Claude Blanchemaison, the Ambassador of France in Russia; Alexander Kelchevski, the Consul General of France in St. Petersburg; Vladimir Zaitsev, the General Director of the National Library of Russia; entrepreneurs and the members of the library's staff. The Foreign Ministry of France and the National Library of Russia are expected to sign an agreement concerning the financing of the Voltaire's Library project by the government of France.

The project must help create modern conditions for the preservation and the ease of use of Voltaire's library by both the public and researchers. The project also includes such programmes as the reconstruction of the Library of Denis Diderot, the restoration of that of Catherine the Great, the creation of the Voltaire's Library exhibit, and the creation of the Museum of Encyclopaedias of the 17th and 18th Centuries.

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