Velehrad monastic library

Label & stamp of the Velehrad monastery

In 2023, three books from the library of the Velehrad monastery were returned.

The monastery in Velehrad, founded in 1205, was taken over by the Jesuits only in 1890, the stamp contained in the volumes clearly indicates the Jesuits as the former owners.

Although the monastery was dissolved during World War II and the premises were used, at least in part, by the Hitler Youth, the seizure of the library did not take place until 1950.  After the monastery was reoccupied by the Jesuits in 1945, it was again dissolved in the course of "Action K" (Czech: Akce K or Slovak: Akcia K) and the monastic brothers were expelled or arrested.

The first two stages of "Action K" directed against the Catholic Church took place in April 1950. In it, nearly 250 men's monasteries were liquidated, their property seized, and some 2,500 friars arrested in Czechoslovakia, which was under communist rule at the time. In a third stage in the fall of 1950, 670 women's convents were dissolved and expropriated.

The Velehrad monastery was repopulated by the Jesuits after the Velvet Revolution in 1990.

The path of the books into the holdings of the Zentral- und Landesbibliothek is unknown. The books were part of unprocessed stock of the Berlin City Library (BStB). Based on the books' history of ownership, it is at least clear that they are post-war acquisitions.