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National Library of Thailand, Bangkok
|Size||3.2M items (2013)|
|Budget||86,840,300 baht (2013)|
|Director||Kanok-on Sakdadate (2013)|
The National Library of Thailand (Thai: หอสมุดแห่งชาติ) is the legal depositary and copyright library for Thailand. It was created in 1905, after the merger of the three existing royal libraries, and is one of the oldest national libraries in Asia. It operates under the jurisdiction of the Fine Arts Department of the Ministry of Culture in Bangkok, Thailand.
The National of Library of Thailand's main tasks are collecting, storing, preserving, and organizing all national intellectual property regardless of medium. Collections include Thai manuscripts, stone inscriptions, palm leaves, Thai traditional books, and printed publications as well as audio-visual materials and digital resources. The library is a national information resource serving citizens nationwide.
The National Library has a long history. Its precursor was the Phra Vajirayana Royal Library (Thai: หอสมุดพระวชิรญาณ) which was established in 1883, by sons and daughters of King Mongkut (Rama IV) to honor their royal father. Later in 1897, King Chulalongkorn returned from his European visit and expressed his desire to dedicate the Vajirayana Library to the Capital. In 1905, three libraries, the Mandira Dharma Library, the Vajirayanana Library, and the Buddhasasana Sangaha Library, were amalgamated at the command of King Chulalongkorn and renamed the "Vajirayanana Library for the Capital City". The library has remained under royal patronage since that date. In 1933, after democratic reforms, the Fine Arts Department was established and assumed administration of the Vajirayanana Library by royal degree. It was subsequently renamed the "National Library". In 1966, the National Library was relocated to Samsen Road in Bangkok and is now administered by the Ministry of Culture.
|1905||Three royal libraries was combined by King Rama V.|
|1916||The Vajirayanana Library for the Capital City was moved to Thavaravathu Building, east of Wat Mahathat.|
|1925||Printed material collections were housed in the Thavaravathu Building, later renamed "Vajiravudh Library" by King Rama VII. All original ancient manuscripts and Thai gilded bookcases were transferred to Sivamokkabiman Hall and renamed the "Vajirayanana Library".|
|1933||The library was placed under the care of the Fine Arts Department as the "Library Division"|
|1947||Damrong Rajanubhab Memorial Library was founded and later transferred to a new building in the Varadis Palace compound on Lan Luang Road.|
|1966||The National Library was moved to Samsen Road.|
|1972-2009||Establishment of 16 provincial National Library branches|
|1979||Establishment of the Naradhip Centre for Research in Social Sciences in the Thavaravathu Building|
|1981||King Vajiravudh Memorial Hall was constructed to house royal private collections and exhibit royal waxworks as well as Dusit Thani Experimental Democratic Cities of King Rama VI.|
|1990||Opening of King Bhumibol Adulyadej Library Building.|
|1994||Opening of the Princess Sirindhorn Music Library.|
|1997||Opening of King Rama IX Music Library.|
|1999||Opening of Lat Krabang National Library Branch.|
|2000||King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hall set up as the centre of royal activities information to honor and commemorate royal activities via a permanent exhibition within Thavaravathu Building.|