The Structure of the Collection
The collections of the Slavonic Library currently comprise over 800,000 non-periodical as well as periodical documents, more than a half of which consist of Russian literature.
The library collection is divided into 13 sections: the general Slavic section has the shelf mark (the symbol marking a document in a depository) ‘A’, Bulgarian is labelled with the shelf mark ‘B’, Czech and Slovak with the shelf mark ‘Č’, whereas Serbian, Croatian, Montenegrin and Bosnian documents have been put historically together in the South-Slavic section with the shelf mark ‘J’. The Belorussian section is labelled with the shelf mark ‘K’, Sorbian with the shelf mark ‘L’ and Macedonian with the shelf mark ‘Mk’. The section of general encyclopaedias and dictionaries has the shelf mark ‘O’, the Polish section has the shelf mark ‘P’, the Russian section has the shelf mark ‘R’ (including, for geographical reasons, also the collection of Russian literature of the 18th and 19th centuries from the Library of A. F. Smirdin ‒ the shelf mark ‘Sm’), the Slovenian section has the shelf mark ‘S’ and the Ukrainian one the shelf mark ‘U’.
Apart from these sections, there are several smaller collections created in the past, which are complemented rather occasionally: the section of separate items ‒ ‘Sp’, the collection of historical literature of non-Slavic focus‒ ‘H’, map section ‒ ‘M’.
The basic criterion for the inclusion of a document in the respective section is its theme.
Most of the documents from the collections of the Slavonic Library are deposited in the Klementinum and are available to users within a few minutes. B, K, L, Mk and O collections, the collection of early Polish literature (P), the original collection of Russian literature and all the newspapers published since 1946 are placed in the depository in Hostivař. Documents from these collections are available for study in the afternoon of the day following that on which a request was made – for more information, see The Lending Service of the Slavonic Library.
Newly acquired specialised books are regularly presented in the electronic quarterly The New Acquisitions in the Collections of the Slavonic Library.