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1663: Library Prefect Peter Lambeck


In 1663, the scholar Peter Lambeck (1628–1680), who came from Hamburg, was appointed library prefect and simultaneously became imperial “historiographer”. He managed to receive a regular yearly budget for the library from Emperor Leopold I and thus succeeded in substantially adding to its holdings. The most important event marking his term was the transfer of the Ambras library to Vienna. Since the Tyrolean line of the Habsburgs had died out in 1665, their precious manuscripts and prints kept at the Ambras chamber of curiosities were brought to Vienna by ship on the Inn and the Danube under Lambeck’s supervision: 583 manuscripts and nearly 1,500 printed works. A part of the works from Ambras that had been hidden and thus remained at the castle only arrived in Vienna much later, i.e. in 1806, including the famous » Ambras Book of Heroes (Cod. Ser. n. 2663). 

In his » Commentarii, written between 1665 and 1679, Peter Lambeck described the library’s holdings, which already comprised some 100,000 volumes, in detail. The classification defined by him in the third volume was subsequently also kept for the newly built State Hall.

As is known from Lambeck’s "Audience Memoralia",Emperor Leopold I frequently visited the library in the company of members of his court and foreign guests. (» ÖNB, Cod. 8011).

» 1723: The Baroque World in the State Hall

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