Flood-damaged books at the Fondo Ebraico

Thousands of books belonging to Florence’s Jewish community’s rich literary and documentary patrimony were struck by the flood of 1966.

Exactly fifty years later, many of these volumes – which were primarily in Rome and were all in poor condition – will return to the Tuscan capital, restored and given new value thanks to an initiative by the Foundation for Jewish Cultural Heritage in Italy in collaboration with the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze, with a sizeable contribution from the Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze. They will be the centerpieces of a new exhibition, promoted and coordinated by Renzo Funaro and Silvia Alessandri, part of ongoing official events related to the flood anniversary.

Displayed alongside these works will be various incunabula (early printed books) and 16th century volumes, in addition to other ancient, flooded editions, restored and present in the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale di Firenze.

The inauguration is scheduled for Thursday, October 27 at 5.30pm.

After institutional greetings by various authorities and presidents of the companies behind the initiative, there will be talks by noted scholars, and finally Rabbi Amedeo Spagnoletto will present the exhibition.