Art And Culture

600,000 Manuscripts in Iran

Ehsanollah Shokrollahi at the 13th Mazandaran Book Fair
Ehsanollah Shokrollahi at the 13th Mazandaran Book Fair

There are a total of 300,000 catalogued manuscripts in the country, says Ehsanollah Shokrollahi, director general of Rare Books at the National Library and Archives of Iran.

At a meeting on manuscripts and old books, held on the sidelines of the 13th Mazandaran Book Fair (February 4-9) in Sari, capital of Mazandaran Province, he said the total number of manuscripts, catalogued or not, is estimated to be 600,000, the Iran Cultural Fairs Institute (ICFI) reported.

Manuscripts define the identity of a nation and provide evidence of its historical origin. “A major part of our manuscripts are still not revived and restored. We have a hard job ahead if we decide to research the precise records of our historical and cultural background.” 

“The remaining 300,000 manuscripts are yet to be delivered to public libraries and treasuries,” the official added.

Recording history was a difficult process in olden times because not everyone could pick up a pen and write; and even if they could, they went through numerous hardships as paper was not there for any content that came into the writer’s mind.

“Today, anyone can claim to be a writer, researcher or a poet. They write what they want, without even following the principles in writing, referencing and layout, and later complain that no one buys their books,” he maintained.

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