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As part of the BN's mission to manage, conserve and disseminate Spain's Bibliographic Heritage, the Biblioteca Nacional, through the Bibliographic Acquisitions Commission, acquires works to complete and enhance the comprehensive collection of items that document the development of Spain's culture, history and science; its role on the world stage; the image that it projects abroad; and the study of other cultures that, at the same time, influence it.

This section provides information on the 2230 heritage archive acquisitions made in 2005. It provides detailed listings of the works by material type, which can be accessed from the menu on the left-hand side of the page, offering users a preview of the new archives whilst they are being processed and incorporated into the library's catalogue.

The principal selection criteria are:

  • Works published in Spain prior to 1958 that are not already included in the BN archives.
  • Documents printed or produced in countries that were linked to Spain at some point in its history.
  • Works published outside of Spain that meet one of the following requisites:
    • Works by Spanish authors.
    • Works published in Spanish or one of Spain's other national languages, particularly those by Latin American authors.
    • Works by foreign authors on subjects related to Spain.

All of the acquisitions are of great significance due to their contribution to Spain's Bibliographic Heritage, but it is possible to highlight the following items in particular:


Additions to the large collection of incunabula held by the BN:

  • LACTANCIO, Lucio Celio Firmiano.- [Opera] : De divinis institutionibus. De ira Dei. Venancio Fortunato : De Resurrectione Christi.- Rostock : Fratres Domus Horti Viridis ad S. Michaelem, 1476, April 9th.
  • NICOLAUS DE LYRA.- Moralia super totam Bibliam.- [Strasbourg : George Husner, ca. 1478].
  • MARCIAL, Marco Valerio.- Epigrammata.- Milan : Filippo de Lavagnia, 1478.

These works are not included in the General Catalogue of Incunabula in Spanish Libraries and will now finally be conserved and made available to researchers at the BN.


The following acquired items are of particular value:

  • ARNAU DE VILANOVA.- [Complete works] Hec sunt opera Arnaldi de Villanova.- Venice : Boneto Locatello, 1505, January 19th.
  • LI, Andrés de.- Repertorio de los tiempos.- [Saragossa : Coci, ca. 1515].

The following are important post-incunabula:

  • [HOURS].- Horas de Nuestra Señora, segun el uso romano, divididas por los tres tiempos del año....- Salamanca : Mathias Gast, 1567.- Seguido de OFFFICIO DE SEMANA SANCTA, segun el uso romano.- Salamanca : by Mathias Gast, 1568.


Various types of manuscripts have been acquired: historical, bibliographic, literary, etc, some of them unpublished:

  • 17th century:
    • CARRILLO DE TOLEDO, Luis, Marquis of Caracena.- [Bando de expulsión de los Moriscos de Valencia].- Dated September 22nd, 1609, Valencia.
  • 18th century:
    • Indice de historiadores árabes españoles cuyos nombres resultan en los manuscritos y son mas conocidos.- 40 p.
    • [Esquilache uprising] : Discurso histórico del tumulto de Madrid, desde Domingo de Ramos 23 de marzo de 1766, que empezó hasta su fin….- 150 h.
  • 19th century:
    • [CATALOGUE].- ["Catálogo de la biblioteca taurómaca de F. y R. July, 1886"].- [113] p., [11] h.
  • 20th century:
    • GUILLEN, Jorge.- La ciudad está loca de geometría.- Signed: Jorge Guillén, Geneva, December 12th, 1920.
    • ALBERTI, Rafael.- Retornos a la dulce libertad : poema manuscrito.- Manuscript poem signed by Rafael Alberti. Date: ca. 1950
    • GÓMEZ DE LA SERNA, Ramón.- La máquina loca.- Illustrations by Barradas. Unpublished.


 Spain's Bibliographic Heritage also consists of documents other than printed or manuscript materials. These also form part of the BN's archives and constitute several magnificent collections. Among those acquired in 2005, it is worth highlighting the following:


  • Joan Llaverías (1865-1938).- 18 watercolours on card for book illustrations.
  • Francisco Ortego y Vereda (1833-1881).- Album of 140 drawings.
  • Collections of original drawings for Spanish comics published between the 1940s and 1960s, produced by major comic strip artists.


  • Album of photographs of Spain and South America between 1850 and 1870. Includes photographs by outstanding photographers such as Charles Clifford, J. Laurent, Begué, Alguacil etc.
  • Cecilio Paniagua (1911-1979).- Photographic archive.
  • Calvache.- Principally between 1901 and 1950. Studio portraits featuring actors, bullfighters, aristocrats, etc.


  • 41 collections of Spanish playing cards, the majority of them from the period between the end of the 19th century and 1960.
  • Cartography:
  • LEA, Philip.- Spain and Portugal.- London : 1695.
  • OTTENS, Reinier and Josué.- Baleares seu Gymnesiae et Pityusae Insulae, dictae Maiorca, Minorca et Yvica.- Amsterdam : c. 1730.


  • BLANCAFORT, Alberto.- Music archive of Alberto Blancafort.
  • [PIANOLA MUSIC ROLLS].- 1004 pianola music rolls featuring music by well-known authors.

For further information about acquisitions please contact: e-mail