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Special Collections

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Access to documents beyond the General Collection require a research permit.

 1. Incunables

This special collection contains books printed prior to December 31st, 1500. There are 146 incunables in the College Library. On incunables of Hungary and our library respectively, please check: Géza Sajó – Erzsébet Soltész: Catalogus incunabulorum quae in bibliothecis publicis Hungariae asservantur (Budapest, 1970). 

 2. Early printed books

The collection contains books compiled according to the principles of Károly Szabó (student of the College between 1833-1842), that are as follows:

•    Hungarian authorship and
•    Hungary or foreign countries as place of publication and
•    Hungarian or other language as original language and
•    time of publication prior to 1711.

Károly Szabó’s Early Hungarian Printed Books appeared in three volumes between 1879 and 1898. His bibliography is extremely abundant in Latin dissertations of Hungarian students defended at Dutch, German and Swiss universities, and their memoires. Most of the 1600 documents can be found in our online catalogue.


3. Manuscript Collection

Our Manuscript Collection consists mainly of private or handwritten documents. All official documents of the institution are preserved by the Archives of the Reformed College. There are 39 codices, several charters, diaries and orders from the early modern history, and manuscripts of such notorieties as the 19th century politician and revolutionist Lajos Kossuth, 19th century poet and revolutionist Sándor Petőfi, autograph writings of famous Hungarian literary authors as Mihály Csokonai Vitéz, Mihály Fazekas (both creators of the 18th century), János Arany (19th century), Zsigmond Móricz, Lőricz Szabó (20th century).


 4. Series Collection

Our Series Collection offers 200 current series titles and a good many old titles from the 18-19th century. The complete series collection may be searched through our online catalogue.

5. School Reports Collection

Irrespectively of their denominational background, the collection contains school reports of many old schools from the Felvidék (today belonging to Slovakia) to Transylvania (part of Romania at present) and from Somogy county to Sárospatak.  

6. Map Collection

In our geographical class we preserve many of the maps and atlases used for educational purposes in the Reformed College. The copper engraved and hand painted atlases of Wilhelm Blaeu, Johann Baptist Homann, Johann Gabriel Doppelmaier are among the outstanding pieces, just as the works of the copper engraver students of the College that mainly consist of maps with Hungarian inscriptions and a globe, all created according to the educational needs.
The catalogue of our geographical class is available in printed form.   


 7. Bible Collection

The collection is based on the 700-volume-bequest of Károly Erdős (1887-1971), professor of theology, and is continuously enlarged by new acquisitions. Due to the rich variety of its content, books of the Bible may be read in almost 250 languages. There are copies of all important Hungarian language editions beginning with the 16th century up to the present. In 2008 -- „Year of the Bible” -- as part of the official series of programs and events, our Library conceived and organized the „Biblia Sacra Hungarica” exposition. Please check the homepage of the exhibition.  

8. Small Prints, Posters Collection

Our two small collections contain curiosities of local history and church history in a variety of forms (of documents) ranging from posters of large interest to commercial ads. The collection is not yet catalogued.  

 9. Historical Collection of 1848/49

During the 1848/49 Revolution and War of Independence Debrecen was the „capital of the war of independence” as it homed all main governmental bodies and offices. Between January and May of 1849 the House of Commons sat in the Oratory of the College.
Beside the Nemzeti dal [National Poem] and 12 Pont [12 Points] placards of national and local interest, public summons, official writings and manuscripts make up the collection.  


 10. Obituaries

Collection of obituaries of the ministers of the Transtibiscan Church District and other persons connected to the Reformed College. The collection is not yet catalogued.  

11. Duplicates

Our stack in Sáránd holds 27.000 books whose copies are already available in the Library.

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by Dr. Radut.