In 2018, the National Library of Belarus finished the international scientific publishing project on facsimile reproduction of a book artifact, the first book called “Primer,” which had been published on July 24, 1618, in the printing house of the Vilna Holy Spirit Orthodox Brotherhood in Evje (now Vievis, Lithuania) .
The Belarusian Primer had a significant influence on the development of book-printing and education in the Belarusian lands and throughout Eastern Europe. There are two copies of the first primer in the world: one is kept in the Middle Temple Library (London, UK), the other is in the Royal Danish Library (Copenhagen).
The facsimile publications were donated to cultural and educational institutions of Belarus, the countries of the European Union and the Commonwealth of Independent States. On July 18, 2019, the National Library of Belarus handed over the facsimile Primer to the national libraries of Australia, Argentina, Bulgaria, Brazil, Georgia, Ireland, Venezuela, Vietnam, India, Indonesia, Spain, Qatar, Korea, Cuba, Mongolia, Norway, the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Romania, Serbia, Syria, Turkey, Croatia, Estonia, South Africa and Japan. The book donation was part of the annual seminar of the heads of diplomatic missions and consular offices of the Republic of Belarus.
According to diplomats, such projects contribute to the development of cultural relations and the strengthening of friendship between countries.
The project on the facsimile reprint of the first Primer was implemented with our partners: the Library of the Honorable Society of the Middle Temple in London; the Embassy of the Republic of Belarus in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Belarus; the International Association of Belarusians; Belarusian State University; the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus; the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; the Belarusian Bank for Development and Reconstruction "Belinvestbank."
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