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China's national library goes digital to preserve ancient books

Xinhua | Updated: 2019-08-04 12:16
People read books at the National Library of China in Beijing, July 31, 2019. [Photo/IC]

BEIJING, Aug 4 — The National Library of China has been digitizing its collection of antique books as a way of preserving and increasing the public accessibility, the China Culture Daily reported earlier this week.

The library's dedicated online database now has more than 32,000 sets of ancient books, accounting for over 60 percent of its total antique book collection, according to the report.

Transforming the books into digital versions enables equal access to rare book resources as readers can peruse the online texts anywhere, the report said.

"It brings great convenience to my day-to-day research compared with borrowing physical books," Du Zexun, a professor on ancient book studies from the Shandong University, told the newspaper.

Since the free database opened to the public in September 2016, viewership has been on the rise and now ranks third among the library's all online databases, the report said.

The National Library of China is home to one of the most diverse collections of ancient books in the Chinese history.

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