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Word Count: 950
The Alexandrian Library played an important role throughout history It contained the largest collection of wisdom that ever existed The earliest documentation of the library is in the Letter of Aristeas which describes the legend of seventy translators of the Hebrew Bible that had worked in Alexandria during the reign of Philadelphus It was in this city that the library was established Alexandria was founded by Alexander the Great in 331 BCE It is located on the northern part of Egypt where the Nile meets the Mediterranean Sea Alexanders empire stretched from Egypt to Asia After his death at the age of 32 his empire was divided among several rulers Ptolemy a Greek general made himself pharaoh over all of Egypt He also made Alexandria the capital of Egypt The library was created when Demetrius a former ruler of Greece suggested to Ptolemy that he should gather books in the style of Platos philosopher kings on the worlds people and on kingship and ruling Demetrius is also believed to have helped to inspire the founding of the Museum of Alexandria a temple dedicated to the Muses Most libraries back in the times of the Alexandrian Library were collections of manuscripts owned by private individuals After Platos death most of his library had been passed on to the Alexandrian Library The fire that destroyed the library in 48 BCE destroyed much information that may never be known again The library consisted of two buildings one was the main library and one was the daughter library Only 50 years after the founding of the library the main library contained 400000 rolls and the daughter library had 42800 rolls Of the total 490000 were mixed rolls meaning each role contained several books and 90000 were unmixed roles The written rolls were kept in clay jars-- the first forerunners of bookshelves-- and each jar contained a list of contents They also stored the rolls in wooden chests
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