NLG in a Nutshell

The National Library of Greece is the par excellence depository and trustee for Greece’s cultural heritage.

  • Founded


  • Status
    Legal entity of public law supervised by the Ministry of Education and Religious Affairs.


  • Supervisory Council
    Stavros Zoumboulakis (President), Emmanouil Dimitrakopoulos (Vice President), Ioannis Kokkonas, Panagiotis Doukas
    Spiridonas Pardalis, Georgios Parlavantzas.


  • Dep. Director General
    Eirini B. Pavlakou


  • Staff
    187 employees


  • Mission
    – to perpetually trace, collect, organise, document, preserve and safeguard scientific and cultural documents, created in Greece or internationally and related to Hellenism in its diachronic evolution and perception by other cultures,
    – to ensure open and equal access to any interested party, driven by freedom of knowledge, information and research.


  • Vision
    to constitute an international center of excellence for the study of Hellenism and for the preservation and dissemination of Greek culture.


  • Major Activities
    The National Library of Greece:
    – acts as deposit library for all printed and electronic publications in Greece,
    – compiles and publishes the National Bibliography in its role as the Cataloguing and Bibliographic Center of the country.
    – enhances collaboration among libraries in Greece and coordinates the Greek Libraries Network.
    – promotes professional expertise and education in various library-related fields.
    – preserves Greek cultural heritage in physical and electronic form and fosters research in Greek civilization and culture.


  • Services
    Access to physical collections, public library section, digital collections of the Greek cultural heritage, digitizing, conservation, electronic reading room of Greek books, educational and training programmes for professionals, library users and the public, exhibitions and cultural events, access to its premises and library tours, National Center for ISBN/ISSN/ISMN and ISIL.


  • Strategy
    NLG strategic priorities for 2022-2026 are:
    1. Complete all classic services of a developed National Library with a modern approach: strengthen and raise the NLG at levels corresponding to the high rank and estimation that the Hellenic Civilization has had through the centuries.
    2. Consolidate the NLG as the leading library of the country: raise the Hellenic Libraries Ecosystem at levels corresponding to the modern Hellenic Civilization.
    3. Strengthen the NLG to emerge as the primary center for supporting the study of Hellenic Civilization internationally.


  • Greek Libraries Network
    NLG coordinates a vibrant and continuously growing network of academic, research, public, municipal, private and school libraries across the country, with the aim to support them in upgrading their services and become learning, knowledge and creativity hubs at the heart of their communities. Number of member libraries: 266


  • Holdings
    Collections: 1,1 million items
    Digital resources: 300 million
    Newspapers and magazines: 15.640


  • Special collections
    The NLG houses special collections including: 5.500 manuscripts, dating from the 9th to the 20th century, 20.000 rare books, 4.000 works of art, public and private collections of archival material consisting of approx. a million of historical documents, approx. 10.000 posters, a small collection of papyri, musical scores, microfilms and maps.



  • Participation in national and international organisations
    Hellenic Academic Libraries Link (HEAL-Link), International Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres-Greek branch (GR-IAML), International Federation of Library Associations & Institutions (IFLA), Conference of European National Librarians (CENL), Conference of Directors of National Libraries (CDNL), Association of European Research Libraries (Ligue des Bibliothèques Européennes de Recherche – LIBER), South East European National Librarians Conference (SEENL), International Internet Preservation Consortium (IIPC), European RDA Interest Group (EURIG), European DDC Users Group (EDUG).


  • Major Projects
    NLG’s Transition to the SNFCC: relocation of NLG from the Vallianeio historic building to its new premises and modernization of its infrastructure and services. (completed in 2018).
    Digitization of the entire collection of Greek New Testament Manuscripts in collaboration with the CSNTM- USA (completed in 2016).


  • Premises
    Net floorspace of the building: 22,000 m2, set within the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center. SNFCC is a sustainable world-class urban complex, that includes the new homes of the National Library of Greece and the Greek National Opera, located within the Stavros Niarchos Park, one of the largest green spaces of Athens, covering an area of 210.000 square meters.


  • Capacity
    Reading rooms: 8 Study seats: 725


  • Locations
    Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center
    Syggrou Avenue 364, 17674, Kallithea (main headquarters)

Historic Vallianeio building
Panepistimiou Str. 32, 10679, Athens (former NLG headquarters, now hosting NLG’s Newspapers Collection)

Votanikos building
Athinon Avenue 31-33 and Spirou Patsi Str. 12,10447, Athens


  • Opening hours@ SNFCC(valid for August 2023)
    Public library section: Monday to Friday: 09:00 – 20:00, Saturday: 09.00-14.00-General and Periodical Collections: Monday-Wednesday – Friday: 09:00 – 16:00 /Tuesday-Thursday: 09:00 – 20:00- Open Reading Rooms: Monday to Sunday: 09:00 – 24:00-Manuscripts, Archives and Special Collections: Monday to Friday: 10:00 – 14:00Opening hours@ Vallianeio: closed for the month of AugustOpening hours@ Votanikos: Monday to Friday: 09:00 – 13:30


  • Contact

Last update: Aug. 2023