Sign Petition

Ritman Library (BPH) petition

6,735 Signatures Goal: 10,000

Express your protest against the dissolution of theBibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica (Ritman Library)


It is widely known that the Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica in Amsterdam, founded by J.R. Ritman, was in great danger in the 1990s, when the ING bank took possession of the collection and threatened to sell it. Fortunately, the Dutch government intervened: the BPH was put on the list of protected Dutch heritage, and the State eventually acquired over 40% of it. The books remained at the same physical location, integrated with the rest of the collection, and the government would eventually acquire all of it. As part of this process, there were great plans for further expansion. Largely due to the financial crisis and a change of government this was taking somewhat longer than originally anticipated, but nobody doubted that the library was safe.
Last week this turned out to be incorrect. An extremely valuable medieval manuscript owned by the BPH (The Grail of Rochefoucauld) was put on sale at Sotheby’s, and this triggered a reaction from the Friesland Bank, which took possession of the library, that had apparently been brought in as collateral, in order to get back a 15 million euro loan from mr Ritman. At present the BPH is closed, and intense negotiations are going on behind closed doors. It is impossible at this moment to predict the outcome, but there is no doubt that the situation is extremely serious. There is a very real possibility that the Friesland bank will try to sell at least the ca. 60% of the library that is still owned by mr Ritman, and nobody knows what implications this will have for the rest of the collection and the BPH as a whole, including its staff. The brand-new government of theNetherlands has announced a program of radical financial cuts in the culture section and elsewhere, which makes a renewed intervention from that side highly unlikely.

If the Ritman library would go down, this would mean an enormous blow to international scholarship in hermetic studies. The damage would be irreversible. By signing this petition you express your concern, and ask the Dutch government and the Friesland bank to do their utmost to ensure that the collection will be saved and will remain available for the international scholarly community.

Additionally, you can express your concern by means of a signed letter. The initiative for this petition comes from the Center for History of Hermetic Philosophy and related currents at the University of Amsterdam (organizationally independent of the BPH, and not in any danger itself), so please send your letter to its director: Prof. Wouter J. Hanegraaff, Oude Turfmarkt 141-147, 1012 GC Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Email: w.j.hanegraaff [ at ] uva.nl

Links

See a list of important signees at: www.theritmanlibrarymustbepreserved.blogspot.com
  • Olivier
    Olivier France, Lyon
    May 03, 2015
    May 03, 2015
    Sincèrement votre.

    Pierre Olivier Lyon
  • Roberto da Cunha
    Roberto da Cunha Uruguay, Montevideo
    May 01, 2015
    May 01, 2015
    This collection should not be destroyed.
  • AHOUANDJINOU Kinsou Nicolas
    Apr 06, 2015
    Apr 06, 2015
    La Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica ( Ritman Library) ne doit pas etre pillee ni vendue. Elle doit rester la propriete de son fondateur pour continuer d'etre au service de l'humanite qui a soif de la verite dans son essence pure et originelle.
    Levons et protegeons ce joyau unique !!!
    Afrique/ Rep du Benin
  • AHOUANDJINOU Kinsou Nicolas
    AHOUANDJINOU Kinsou Nicolas Benin, Djeregbe
    Apr 06, 2015
    Apr 06, 2015
    La Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica ( Ritman Library) ne doit pas etre pillee ni vendue. Elle doit rester la propriete de son fondateur pour continuer d'etre au service de l'humanite qui a soif de la verite dans son essence pure et originelle.
    Levons et protegeons ce joyau unique !!!
    Afrique/ Rep du Benin
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6163

Signatures

  • 2 weeks ago
    olga calatayud rodriguez
    2 weeks ago
  • 3 weeks ago
    Olivier
    3 weeks ago
  • 4 weeks ago
    Roberto da Cunha
    4 weeks ago
  • 4 weeks ago
    Derek Osborne
    4 weeks ago
  • 2 months ago
    Erin Marie Crommett
    2 months ago
  • 2 months ago
    AHOUANDJINOU Kinsou Nicolas
    2 months ago
  • 2 months ago
    Andreas Venus
    2 months ago
  • 2 months ago
    Katharina Kremin
    2 months ago
  • 7 months ago
    RAFFI
    7 months ago
  • 7 months ago
    Giuliana Ferran
    7 months ago
  • 8 months ago
    Boleslao Sawicki Sabomir
    8 months ago
  • 10 months ago
    Guido Nerger
    10 months ago
  • 10 months ago
    tedd tribe
    10 months ago
  • 11 months ago
    Angela Igrisan
    11 months ago
  • 1 year ago
    Satya Alethea
    1 year ago
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