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Older printed materials

Mass media through five centuries

The University Library’s special collections cover more than two kilomtres of shelf space containing older printed books from the 1460s to 1799. All subject areas are represented, from literature, cookery books, sports and maps to theology, law and science.

The oldest printed books include just over 200 incunables – books printed before 1500, during the first five decades of typography – which are part of the University Library’s collections. The University Library also preserves several completely unique printed items of which only a single copy survives to this day. Among these are Malmø-bogen from 1529, one of the first books ever to be printed in Malmö. Another example is King Karl IX’s Mandat om eder och sabbatsbrott from 1602, in which the king accuses the Swedish people of gluttony and debauchery, which has caused God to punish the country with pestilence, famine and war.

The older printed materials collections also contain a large number of bound volumes of maps and single map sheets, as well as engravings and copperplate etchings.

Hand-coloured prayer book
Hand-coloured prayer book, Paris 1532.
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Older print collections (1500-1799)
A glimpse of our older print collections (1500–1799).

Castle Uranienborg
Tycho Brahe's castle Uraniborg on Hven. From Joan Bleu, Atlas Maior, 1662–1672.