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Central Library (UNAM)

Central Library of National Autonomous University of Mexico
Established 1950
Location Coyoacán, Mexico City, Mexico
Size 428,000 book volumes in general collection, reference collection and special collection.
70,000 volumes in historical collection (1450-1950).
3507 periodical titles.[1]

Central Library (UNAM Biblioteca Central), is the main library in the Ciudad Universitaria Campus of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). It holds one of the largest collections in Mexico. It is in a group of landmark buildings that make the Campus a World Heritage site.

The outside of the library building is covered with various murals, which were painted by Juan O'Gorman.


  • History 1
  • Collection 2
  • Services 3
  • Murals 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7


The library opened its doors for the first time on April 5, 1956, after being moved from its original location in Mexico City center, where it had been for the previous 50 years.


It currently holds around 400,000 books.[2]


The library has book loan services, and online searching and downloading of digital content that it distributes among all the UNAM servers, and accessible to all students and academics of the University.


The idea for the murals was proposed by O'Gorman to Carlos Lazo (Manager of the Ciudad Universitaria project). Lazo was very excited, especially by the idea of making a mural made just out of thousands of colored tiles, something that never had been done at that scale.

The tiles were brought from many different parts of the country because a large number of colors were needed for the construction.[3]

  • North Wall: Pre-Hispanic Past

This mural represents the ancient past of Mexican Culture, having a rough representation of what Mexico City was originally. It contains a River that encompasses what used to be the Center and on the border the symbols for the different surrounding neighborhoods are represented. In the Center a Tenochtitlan representation recreating the Mexico City foundation legend, in which the natives were supposed to found their city in the place where they find an eagle eating a snake and standing in a cactus.

  • South Wall: Colony Past
  • East Wall: Contemporaneous World
  • West Wall: The University and Modern Mexico

See also

  • UNAM—Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Modernizarse y lograr recursos: retos de la Biblioteca Central
  3. ^ Biblioteca Central

External links

  • Official Website
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