The Franciscan Collection consists of the libraries of those convents of the Franciscan Province of France and Belgium where activity no longer justifies maintaining the works in situ. The works are a permanent deposit as a result of an agreement made in 2002 by the BNU and the Franciscan Family (1). It is supplemented by a number of ordinary acquisitions made in partnership with the Franciscans, and constitutes a very valuable collection for research on Franciscanism.
The contents of the Franciscan Collection
- about 20 000 monographs, 250 titles of periodicals (including 50 current subscriptions), and many manuscripts, iconographic documents and bibliophilic works from every period since the time of St Francis of Assisi (1181/1182-1226)
- documentation more specifically on Franciscan history, dogmatic theology, Mariology, Rules for monastic life, liturgy, hagiography, mysticism and the history of the missions
- the sources include numerous editions of the writings of Francis of Assisi, Bonaventura, Duns Scotus, Bernardino of Sienna, Lawrence of Brindisi, Jean de La Haye, Maria de Jesus, Leonard of Port Maurice and, for the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Frédéric Ozanam, Léon Veuthey, Valentin-Marie Breton, Leonardo Boff, etc.
- critical studies in Biblical exegesis, Franciscan theology and history, the works of Bernardin de Picquigny, Paul Sabatier, Andrew George Little, Leonhard Lemmens, Kajetan Esser, Michael Bihl, Carolus Balic, and Damien Vorreux
- Bible commentaries, legislative texts, old antiphonaries, poetry and mystical works, treatises on astronomy, mathematics, physics, novels, etc
The Franciscan Collection includes a good number of works that are valuable because of their rarity of iconographic content, including several incunabula by Nicolas de Lyre, Joan Blae's atlas (1663), and a number of watercolours illustrating the Canticle of the Sun by Arnold Goffin and Ephrem de Kcynia (1923).
It also continues to be developed through regular purchases of works in French and other languages, to be able to provide researchers with the recent results of Franciscan research.
Locating works in the Franciscan Collection
Works in the Franciscan Collection bear the pressmark EF (or RF for works in the reserve stacks). All the catalogue records may be consulted on the BNU's site, in the section entitled "General catalogue".
To limit your search to the Franciscan Collection, use the "advanced search" mode and select 'Franciscan Collection" instead of "BNU" in the "Database" field.
The Paul Sabatier Archives, complementing the Franciscan Collection
Complementing the Franciscan Collection, the BNU received an exceptional gift in 2009 in the form of the archives and library of Paul Sabatier (1858-1928), a minister of religion and professor who was an acknowledged specialist in Franciscan research, having taught for a number of years at the Faculty of Protestant Theology at the University of Strasbourg.
For more information
- Claude Coulot and Franck Storne (dir.). Ens infinitum. A l'école de saint François d'Assise. Exhibition catalogue. Strasbourg: Presses Universitaires de Strasbourg et Bibliothèque Nationale et Universitaire de Strasbourg, 2009.
- For more information on the exhibition: Ens infinitum. A l'école de saint François d'Assise
- Visit the Capuchins' Franciscan Library [site in French]
tel.: +33 (0)3 88 25 28 36
Contact in the Franciscan Family
Brother Claude Coulot
3 Rue Dotzinger