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The exhibition “Acceleration: the Short Path of the Latvian Book Publishing from Patronage to an Independent Sector in the 19th Century” has opened

On 29 February 2024, the exhibition “Acceleration: the Short Path of Latvian Book Publishing from Patronage to an Independent Sector in the 19th Century” was opened on Level 8 – the librarians’ level – of the National Library of Latvia. The main idea of ​​the exhibition is to emphasize the importance of the book in the preservation and development of Latvian written culture, highlighting the role of book publishers in historical regions of Latvia and their contribution to the spread of books and knowledge.


Six outstanding personalities have been selected for the exhibition; each of them represents one of the six cultural and historical regions of Latvia, the activity of publishers outside the capital is purposefully highlighted. Geographical locations where the book publishers operated are marked on a stylized map of Latvia:


·     Pierīga, Pārdaugava – Vilis Altbergs (1847–1920), a book publisher and bookseller, active member of Riga Latvian Society and other organizations;

·     Latgale – Andrivs Jūrdžs (also Jurdžys, Jurdžs, 1845–1925), a publisher of Latgalian manuscripts, owner of a personal library, bookbinder, poet;

·     Zemgale – Heinrich (Indriķis) Alunāns (1835–1904), a publicist, translator, the first Latvian professional book publisher, bookseller, public figure;

·     Kurzeme – Klāvs Ukstiņš (1832–1904), a teacher, book publisher and bookseller, active citizen;

·     Vidzeme – Jānis Ozols (1859–1906), an owner of a printing house, book publishing company and bookshop, active citizen and promoter of national literature;

·     Sēlija – Friedrich Wilhelm Wagner (Wagner, 1786–1854), a pastor of the Latvian Lutheran church in Nereta, publicist, compiler of textbooks, book supplier, distributor, founder of the Latvian library.


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