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About Kuwait National Library

Historical Overview

The history of the National Library of Kuwait dates back to 1913, when the Charity Association established Kuwait’s’ first public library. A decade later, in 1923, a group of Kuwait’s elites and intellectuals called for the establishment of a national library to house a vast collection of valuable books, manuscripts, and periodicals. Due to the success of the library and large visitor turn out, the government decided to host the library and include it within the Department of Information in 1937, renaming it the Library of Public Information.

For the next 40 years, the Library of Public Information carried the cultural and intellectual torches of Kuwait, receiving and preserving valuable books and volumes on all subjects ranging from Arabic literature to the sciences and history.

In 1979, responsibility of the library of Public Information was passed over to The National Council for Culture, Arts, and Letters and the library was renamed the Central Library of the State. By this time, the library had grown to encompass over 50,000 books and volumes, as well as over 6000 periodicals- both Arabic and foreign, in addition to a large number of rare manuscripts.

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