Eastern Europe

Special acquisitions and holdings

Russian Fiction, Avant-garde Literature and Exile Literature

Specific priorities of the Eastern European Department besides the Specialist Information Service Slavonic Studies were and are: Russian fiction and publications on literature, art and cultural history of the period 1900-1939. In particular, this concerns the avant-garde literature as well as publications published in Berlin. Monographies from this important Berlin scene - about 3,000 titles were published here in the 1920s - are now available in the Staatsbibliothek, about 90% of which are mostly new acquisitions. The stocks of Russian literature from the later emigration are, however, also of importance. During expanding the collection special priority ws placec on continuous acquisition.

Church Slavonic Collections

Russian Church Slavonic writings, also Old Believers and Jedinovercen prints of the 16th - 19th centuries: Only small stocks were available in the old collections. Especially since the end of the seventies, about three to four titles were acquired annually. These are liturgical texts such as Osmoglasnik, Minäen, Služebnik, Psalter or Triodien, such as the incunable "Triod' cvetnaja", Krakow 1493, listed in the Union Catalogue of Incunabula, and apologetic texts in support of and against the Old Believers, such as the Kirillova Kniga Moskva 1644. Browse our Digitised Church Slavonic collections ...


In addition to the titles continuously acquired from Baltic countries, the Staatsbibliothek has a number of valuable special collections of Baltica from the literary estates of Professor Gaigalaitis and Professor Hermann (around 2,500 titles), in particular the Gaigalaitis Depositum. These are listed in the StaBiKat and also in the printed catalogue Baltica: Depositum Vilius Gaigalaitis. At the request of Professor Gaigalaitis, his literary estate was preserved in the Staatsbibliothek as a deposit and was to be returned to a free Lithuania. This restitution took place in 1997. The holdings can still be used in microfiche format in the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin.