National Library of Azerbaijan

The Mirza Fatali Akhundov National Library of Azerbaijan (Azəri: Mirzə Fətəli Axundov adına Azərbaycan Milli Kitabxanası) is a central state library of Azerbaijan, located in Baku and founded in 1922. It is named after Mirza Fatali Akhundov, an Azerbaijani dramatist and philosopher. The library overlooks the Khagani Street, Rəşid Behbudov Avenue and the Nizami Street. Its facades feature the statues of various writers and poets: Nizami Ganjavi, Mahsati, Uzeyir Hajibeyov, Shota Rustaveli, Alexander Pushkin and several others.

National Library of Azerbaijan
Main entrance and building of the library
Country Azerbaijan
TypeNational library
Established1923 (1923)
Coordinates40°22′27″N 49°50′45″E
Items collected5M items
Access and use
Access requirementsRegistration
Other information

A vast, eight-stage repository occupies the four floors of the building and is equipped with special elevators, which deliver the books to the outlets. The capacity of reading rooms is 500 seats. Orders are also accepted by e-mail upon electronic registration.

The library includes 25 sections and 26 sectors. The fund of the library covers approximately 4 513 000 publishing materials.


Founded in 1922, the library moved to its current location on May 23, 1923. The building was designed by Azerbaijani architect Mikayil Huseynov. It was initially known as the General Library and State Book Storage of Azerbaijan. On July 11, 1939 the library gained its present name. In 1962, the library was finally granted permission to create exchange ties with the Bibliothèque nationale de France. In 2005, in accordance with the decree issued by the Cabinet of Azerbaijan, the library took the name Akhundov Azerbaijan National Library. In 2005, it joined the Conference of European National Librarians which includes 54 libraries in Europe..

In 2005 the Department for Foreign Literature was established to participate in international book exchanging and to cooperate with relevant departments of foreign libraries, as well as the organizations operating in the field of library. The department cooperates with more than 60 countries including Jordan, Egypt, Russia, Sweden, Estonia, Georgia and etc.[1]

In 2000 the National Library named after M.F.Akhundov established an Internet hall. In 2001 a training center was opened by the library. It uses an automated management system since 2003.

Present day

Today, the building houses books, printed materials, newspapers, maps, dissertations and records,[2] including copies of all the newspapers published during the Soviet period. It receives four copies of every new book and two copies of every magazine and newspaper published in Azerbaijan. The library, the only one of its kind, has microfilm and photos of newspapers published in Azerbaijan before the Bolshevik Revolution.

Usage of the Library

Citizens of Azerbaijan, as well as other countries, who have reader card may use the library free of charge. But some services such as scan of the documents, photocopy, ordering book from other/foreign libraries are payable.

Any citizen may get a reader card submitting his/her identification documents such as IDs or passports and driving license. The reader card is given to all user groups for once use. Usage of reader card not belonging to you is forbidden. Library items are given to the readers by control paper which is filled in by the reader at the control point.

Entering the library halls with mobile phones in general mode, outdoor clothes and cameras, as well as with big bags is forbidden. The library allows the readers to use their personal laptops. But plugging flash drives and discs into the computers of the library is also forbidden.

It is strictly forbidden to photocopy the documents protected in the Rare Books Fund and museum of the library, the archives of the Azerbaijan Literature Department and the newspapers printed in the newspaper fund, and the manuscripts of the Notaries and Fonts Department. Photocopies of these literatures are only permitted by the department for organization of electronic resources. It is forbidden to take literature from the Rare Books Fund and the Azerbaijan Literature Archive Fund.[3]

Reading halls

Every citizen of Azerbaijan/ other countries with a reader card can use periodical press hall. Four-year magazines (125 in Azerbaijani and 20 in Russian) and five-year newspapers (236 in Azerbaijani and 22 in Russian) in the hall which has 67 seats.

Exhibition hall has been established to hold literary events, book presentations, meetings with authors, and exhibitions. All the events are open to all users.

There are 1869 items including 757 in Azerbaijani and 1112 in Russian in the reading hall for exact and technical sciences. The readers may request books from the basic book collections.

Approximately 2500 copies of magazines and newspapers in various languages are stored in foreign language hall with 20 seats for users. The hall has been provided with alphabetical catalogs of the books in different languages.

The rare books, as well as the books about Azerbaijan covering the period until 1920 are stored in the rare book and library museum.

Humanitarian sciences hall with 36 seats introduces 4237 items (2072 in Azerbaijani and 2165 in Russian) and provides the users with alphabetical and systematic catalogs.

The Students hall rendering services especially to higher school students and the young is up to 250 seats. Approximately 9500 items (in the Azerbaijani and Russian languages) including encyclopedias, guidebooks, dictionaries, etc. and covering different fields of science are in the use of the readers in the hall provided with alphabetical and systematic catalogs.

16 readers can use music publication hall at the same time. There are sound records, copies of Azerbaijani and foreign compositions, copies of music handwritings and draft theatrical plays of Azerbaijani composers and playwrights, as well as copies of music books in different languages stored in the hall.

The National Library`s international relations

  • A Memorandum of cooperation in the field of library was signed between the national library of Azerbaijan and national library of Estonia[4] on June 6, 2010.
  • The National Library named after M.F. Akhundov signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation with Swiss National Library on May 4, 2011.
  • The National Parliamentary Library of Georgia signed a memorandum on mutual relations with national library of Azerbaijan[5] on 20 December 20013.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding on mutual cooperation was signed between the National Library named after M.F.Akhundov and the St. St. Cyril and Methodius National Library of Bulgaria on April 17, 2015.[6]
  • Partnership Agreement regarding Partnership in the European Library was signed by National Library of Azerbaijan and Foundation of Dutch Law on Stitching Conference of European National Librarians on May 2, 2016
  • A Memorandums on cooperating in the field of library were signed between national libraries of Azerbaijan, Russia and Egypt on September 29, 2017.
  • National Library named after M.F.Akhundov signed a memorandum on cooperation with Austrian National Library.[7]
  • A Memorandum of Understanding ("MOU") was signed between the National Library and Qatar National Library on April 17, 2018.
  • A Memorandum on cooperation in the field of library was signed between National Library named after Akhundov and National Library of Belarus .[8]
  • A Memorandum on cooperating was signed between Azerbaijan National Library and National Library of Morocco on April 7, 2015.[9]
  • A Memorandum of Understanding ("MOU") was signed between Azerbaijan National Library and the Regents of the University of California, on behalf of its Los Angeles Campus ("UCLA) on January 9, 2018.[10]

See also


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