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Japanese company to digitise rare Vatican library manuscripts

Published on Mar 21, 2014 12:04 AM

VATICAN CITY (AFP) - Ancient manuscripts in the Vatican library penned from East Asia to the Pre-Colombian Americas will be digitised by a Japanese company as part of a global project to make the collection available for free viewing by the public.

Japan's NTT DATA will digitize 3,000 historical works and put them online over a four-year period in an initiative costing 18 million euros (S$31,650,120 million), the company said at a press conference in the Vatican on Thursday.

"The manuscripts to be digitised go from the Pre-Colombian American period to the Chinese and Japanese East Asia, passing through all the languages and cultures which have animated Europe," the Vatican's librarian and archivist Jean-Louis Brugues said.

The library began digitising its books a couple of years ago and the deal with NTT DATA will bring the total of manuscripts converted to 15,000 by 2018.

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