The heritage of the past and the present
Look for a document
The BmL preserves, develops and makes available collections which are special and exceptional by their rarity or their scope, sometimes put together under the library’s own initiative and sometimes bequeathed by public or private collectors.
Consulting precious documents requires particular care and the conservation policy for these documents justifies the imposition of certain conditions on their provision.
This mission concerns firstly the collections of manuscripts, incunabula, old books, books about artists, prints, photographs etc. which constitute the largest collection in France after that of the French National Library.
Discover our treasures
Come to one of our discovery tours
Free tours, in small groups, to discover the treasures so carefully preserved by the BmL. Presentations of heritage works and collections : illuminated manuscripts, old and contemporary prints, photographs etc.
See the programme for our discovery tour times.
Read Gryphe, the BmL’s heritage appreciation journal
We are happy to announce the publication of the 23rd issue of Gryphe. After lying dormant for four years, Gryphe has risen from its ashes and remains true to its original mission : that of being the BmL’s heritage appreciation journal.
Further information about the 24th issue of Gryphe.
Scroll through the thematic dossiers of Numelyo
At the origins of Lyon Public Library
The history of the book in Lyon is reflected particularly well in the collections which have been gathered there over the centuries and now constitute the library’s old collections.
Merovingian manuscripts probably from the scriptoria of the large abbeys of the Ile Barbe or Ile d’Ainay are symbols of the city’s first urban and intellectual renaissance. These manuscripts from the 5th and 6th centuries are the oldest documents in the collections currently housed in the Part-Dieu library.
Discover all the themed files
Visit an online exhibition
Discover our Merovingian psalter
The manuscript contains around one third of the 150 Psalms, one of the books of the Bible. It was written at the end of the 5th century or early in the 6th century by a scribe in the best Roman tradition, probably in France. It may come from the monastery on the Ile Barbe, to the north of Lyon, which had a scriptorium (a writing room). The manuscript then became part of the library of the Saint-Jean Cathedral in Lyon, until the French Revolution when it was confiscated by the Nation, to be handed over to the City of Lyon in 1803.
See the manuscript online on Numelyo.