National Esperanto Library and Archive

The Esperanto National Library and Archive is the biggest Esperanto library in Italy, and one of the richest in the world; it is located in Massa, in northern Tuscany.

Founded in 1972 as the official library of the Italian Esperanto Federation,[1] it is now a public collection, hosted by the State Archive in Massa and part of the provincial network of libraries (Rete Provinciale delle Biblioteche di Massa, or REPROBI).[2]

The inauguration of its new see in the building of the State Archive was celebrated on 25 October 2008 by means of a public conference, called "Dall'Esperanto storico al multimediale" ("From historical to multimedial Esperanto"), hosted in the Sala della Resistenza, in the Ducal Palace of Massa.[3]


The concept of a national library which could host all the literary works in Esperanto was first imagined by professor Mario Dazzini (Pietrasanta, 1910 – Massa, 1985)[4] and his sister, Catina Dazzini, already since the 1950s.

The first such collection began in 1972, when Dazzini received a rare Esperanto book (the first grammar of Esperanto ever published in Italy, written by Daniele Marignoni). The book was donated by the Italian linguist Bruno Migliorini and his brother Elio Migliorini, a geographer.[5]

The core of the library consisted not only of books provided by the Migliorinis, but also of works donated by Mr. Boscarino from Ragusa, by Corrado Grazzini, by Luigi Minnaja and by other Italian Esperantists.[5]

The library was first hosted in the Malaspina Castle, on the hills surrounding Massa, and was then moved to the building of the State Archive in Massa.[5]

In March 1994 the library and its archive were donated to the State and to the archive administration of the Italian Ministero per i Beni Culturali e Ambientali.[5]

The local Esperanto group in Massa began in January 2007 to catalogue the books and works hosted by the library,[6] being helped and financed by the province of Massa-Carrara, together with the regional government of Tuscany and the Massa State Archive.[7]


The library hosts books written in or related to Esperanto; the books mainly deal with linguistics, literature, theology and politics.[7] Overall, the library hosts around eight thousand books,[5] of which the majority was donated by family Dazzini, and later by other Italian Esperantists.[7]

The collection also includes 176 magazines, not yet catalogued, as well as other documents such as travel diaries, correspondence, photographic images and music recordings.[7]

About half of the collection consists of translations in Esperanto of works of prose and poetry from every part of the world.


  1. ^ Amedeo Benedetti, L'Esperanto e la Biblioteca Nazionale di Massa, in "Charta", n. 97, May–June 2008, p. 60.
  2. ^ Elenco dei soggetti aderenti alla Rete Provinciale delle Biblioteche di Massa Archived 10 May 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ A Massa la presentazione della Biblioteca Nazionale di Esperanto -
  4. ^ En memoro de Mario Dazzini, ne L'esperanto, luglio-agosto 1985, p. 3.
  5. ^ a b c d e Amedeo Benedetti, L'Esperanto e la Biblioteca Nazionale di Massa, in "Charta", n. 97, May–June 2008, p. 63.
  6. ^ Archived 14 October 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ a b c d Provincia di Massa-Carrara - Biblioteca Nazionale di Esperanto Archived 22 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine.


  • Amedeo Benedetti, L'Esperanto e la Biblioteca Nazionale di Massa, in Charta, n. 97, May–June 2008, pp. 60–63.

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