Here at Flavorpill, we’re always on the lookout for a great library — even if that library happens to be fictional. In fact, maybe especially then, because if there’s anything we like better than reading in a great library, it’s reading about a great library (or bookstore) in a great library. So we’ve sifted through literature, film, and television to bring you ten of the best libraries ever imagined. Check them out after the jump, and if we’ve left off your favorite, be sure to add it to our list in the comments.
The Library of Babel, “The Library of Babel,” Jorge Luis Borges
In Borges’s classic story, the entire universe is a library, a infinite labyrinth, which contains all books — that is, every possible ordering of letters and symbols, so that one full book of gibberish might differ from another only in the placement of a single comma. “Perhaps my old age and fearfulness deceive me,” Borges’s narrator muses at the story’s end, “but I suspect that the human species — the unique species — is about to be extinguished, but the Library will endure: illuminated, solitary, infinite, perfectly motionless, equipped with precious volumes, useless, incorruptible, secret.” Sigh.