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The project on facsimile reprint of Francysk Skaryna's books is launched

The project on facsimile reprint of Francysk Skaryna's books is launched
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On 26 December, a solemn ceremony of the official launching of the national project on the facsimile reprint of Francysk Skaryna’s book heritage took place in the Round hall.


During the event the first volume of complete works by Belarusian and East-European first printer was signed for publishing. “The greatest cultural event in life of our country is taking place. Today a good start has been given to the projects timed to the 500th anniversary of Belarusian national book printing which will be celebrated in 2017”, Belarusian First Deputy Minister of Culture Vladimir Karachevsky said at the celebration.

The publishing project which initiators and main executors are the BelVEB bank and the National Library of Belarus is planned for 2013–2017 as part of the National Program “Culture of Belarus” for 2011–2015. The Program is designed for a five-year term in view of the volume of works on production of digital copies of original editions by Francysk Skaryna, preparation and publication of facsimile editions and scientific support of the program. During this period it is planned to release a facsimile edition of 25 books in 20 volumes – the fullest repertory of books printed by Francysk Skaryna in Prague and Vilna. The project is based on electronic copies of the first printer’s books kept in libraries and museums of Belarus, Russia, Ukraine, Germany and other countries.

“When the administration of the National Library of Belarus suggested an idea of such a project, there were no doubts whether this project was necessary or not. There were doubts only whether we would be able to cope with this task and achieve our goals”, – President of the BelVeB bank Pavel Kallaur said.

The facsimile edition will restore as fully as possible the books by Francysk Skaryna. The editions will feature all the structure, contents, fonts and engravings of original books, all the traits got during their 500-year existence will be reproduced as well. All the texts will be accompanied with comments of scientists and translations of forewords and afterwords by Francysk Skaryna into Belarusian, Russian and English languages. According to Deputy Director of the National Library of Belarus Alexander Susha, a professional team for working on this project was created, and representatives of scientific elites, publishing houses and organizations promoting book heritage were engaged. Alexander Susha emphasized that Skaryna was a colossal figure in Belarusian culture, the person who had predetermined cultural processes and brought the knowledge to descendants. The first printer left for us the richest legacy which we have not comprehended yet.

The facsimile edition of books by the Belarus first printer will present to the public a valuable layer of cultural heritage of our people and will become a basis for historical, philological, culturological and local research. The released editions will be transmitted to scientific, educational, cultural and public organizations of Belarus and foreign countries.

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