The Museum of Miniature Books in Baku, Azerbaijan, the very first of its kind, is sheltered in the old city (Icheri Sheher) of this modern metropolis.
The creator and founder of this unique museum is Ms Zarifa Salakhova, Honoured Worker of Culture of Azerbaijan, member of the national commission for UNESCO
“There are over 8,500 books published in 80 countries in my collection. 5,555 books are presented here in 39 window displays in the museum in Baku, 1,051 books are exhibited in 14 window displays in the Heydar Aliyev Palace in Nakhchivan, and 1,052 books are exhibited in 15 window displays in Ganja. And most recently, this year on 6 November, I opened a museum in Markhal, Sheki, which contains 620 books in six window displays. It’s better to let the world see these books than keep them in my storerooms” – said Ms Zarifa Salakhova.
The most valuable book in the collection of Museum of Miniature Books in Baku, Azerbaijan is a Qur’an, a Qur’an that was published in Saudi Arabia in 1672 according to our calendar. At the end of the 19th century in Poland, it was miniaturised by a mechanical and reproductive method and inserted into a case with a magnifying glass by a bibliophile with the surname Schulz. This is the most valuable book. There are two books like this: One was given to museum owner by an elderly woman. She lived in the village of Mashtaga, near Baku. “She found out that I collect miniature books. The Qur’an was hanging around her neck all the time in a leather bag. And the second Qur’an was given to me by a Russian artist. He learned from my brother about my addiction to miniature books. He wanted the book to be here in the museum. The most valuable fiction book is undoubtedly the edition of Pushkin’s “Eugene Onegin” published during his lifetime in 1837”.
Presently, there are no miniature books for sale at the Museum of Miniature Books in Baku, Azerbaijan. However, if you bring copies of miniature books that the Museum doesn’t have, they’ll gladly exchange them for some of those described above which she herself has published.
Source: Visions of Azerbaijan