Founded in 1632, the library of the Kiev Mohyla Academy went up in flames in 1780. Encompassing predominantly humanist, scholastic and homiletic titles in Latin yet placed in a heartland of Eastern Orthodox territories, the library was something of an anomaly for its time. However, this made it a hotbed of cultural interaction, and during this period the library collections offered East Slavic intellectuals a comprehensive introduction to Western printed matter. Those books brought along with them not only a new pattern of knowledge, but also an awareness of the diversity and multiplicity of views which the educated could hold.
This is the first history of the library of the Kiev Mohyla Academy ever written, and by telling its story the author considers a range of themes, such as the preservation of Byzantine legacy in the European cultural heritage, the evolution of education, the formation of library collections and maintenance of libraries, the book trade and migration of books throughout the continent, and the impact of printed books on the intellectual development in the period.