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The Digital Periodical and Newspaper Library is part of the Hispanic Digital Library project, the aim of which is public reference and internet dissemination of the bibliographic heritage held in the Biblioteca Nacional.

This periodical and newspaper library was created in March 2007 to provide public access to the digital collection of historical Spanish press items housed in the national library, with an initial collection of 143 newspapers and periodicals. The range of titles has been growing, and there are currently (september 2020) 2,413 titles, which is over 72.488.324 pages.
It will continue growing, as far as the budget allows, to cover the evolution of periodicals and headlines from the Spanish press, from its beginnings up until the mid-20th century, always in compliance with Spanish intellectual property laws.

The criterion used has been to select newspapers and magazines representative of their time; those that illustrate the broad subject matter of Hispanic periodical and newspaper publication, and of which there are complete collections. This means visitors to the periodical and newspaper library will find political, satirical, humorous, scientific, religious, illustrated, entertainment, sports, artistic and literary publications, amongst others.

In 2011, two new services were created which directly affect the Digital Periodical and Newspaper Library. On the one hand, it is now possible to jointly consult the records of the Hispanic Digital Library (BDH) and those of the Periodical and Newspaper Library from the BDH search engine; and on the other, a specific search engine has been developed that includes 2.0 functionalities.

In 2012, production began on a new version of the Digital Periodical and Newspaper Library application, which complies with the international OAI (Open Archives Initiative) and EUROPEANA standards, in addition to some improvements to the search engine to make it easier to use.

The application that manages the collection allows searches for both a specific title and a group of publications published in one place or on a specific date. You can access the digital texts from the results page by clicking on either the image thumbnail or "PDF".

The format of the digital publications is PDF with OCR, which allows you to search for any term in the text of the publication. Thanks to these new text search capabilities, the Digital Periodical and Newspaper Library has become a magnificent research tool.

This digital collection began with the intention of becoming a reference for research and the consultation of both periodicals and the history of the Spanish press. In addition to enabling the reading and searching of texts, it also provides information about the main digital periodical and newspaper collections, thus providing knowledge and access to the largely unexplored “Spanish periodical and newspaper heritage”.