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Gorky Science Library
Ukrainian Drama and Music Theater
Pastera 15 (Пастера)
Founded in 1925 this theater was one of the first Ukrainian theaters in the country.
(Click here for more information on tickets)
Gorky Science Library
Pastera 13 (Пастера)
Tel: 23-21-93 (General number)
23-45-36 (museum)
23-10-70 (Canadian Ukrainian Library)
Email: ognb@ognb.odessa.ua

The Gorky Science Library. established in 1829, was the second public library in Russia (the first was in St. Petersburg). It was first located at the semi-circular building on Primorsky Boulevard 7 (Приморский Бульвар), overlooking the Duke Monument and Primorsky (Potemkin) Stairs.

The current building for the library was built in 1904-1906 by architect F. Nesturkh. At the time, it was regarded as the best library built in all of Russia. It was opened to the public in 1829.

Today the Gorky Science Library is the largest library in Odessa, with over 5 million books in over 100 languages.

The memorial plaque to the left
of the entrance reads:

Here in 1941 worked Hero of the Soviet Union,
who took part in the defense of Odessa and Sebastopol,
sniper Ludmila Mikhailovna Pavlichenko 1916-1974

The central section is occupied by reading rooms. The right wing has offices. The left wing and basement house the books.

Interesting Sight

Closed summers until September, excursions 10 people minimum (10 each), must write a paper why you want to see the library museum.

A fascinating find that few tourists see:The library museum has over 7,000 rare books and manuscripts. These included manuscripts from the 10th to 11th centuries, the first Russian printed books, books from Peter the Great's reign, and Russian magazines from the beginning of the 18th century.

The museum includes a collection of miniature books.

The most interesting is Galileo Galilei's Letter to a Madam Christina. When printed late in the 19th century it was the world's smallest book, measuring 11 x 16 mm (.4 x .6 inch).

The collection also includes Dante's Divine Comedy (34 x 38 mm / 1.3 x 1.5 inches), published in Italy in the 19th century, the works of Ivan Kyrlov (22 x 29 mm / .86 x 1.14 inches) published in St. Petersburg in 1885.

(Today's smallest book according to the Guinness Book of World Records is a 0.04-inch-wide edition of "Old King Cole" located in Cal Poly library in California, USA)


Odessa is highly literate, with a nearly 100% (universal) literacy rate. There are over 200 libraries in Odessa.

Courtyard in Sadovaya (Садовая)
Continue your virtul tour by walking to
Odessa's Churches
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