The Historical Library of the Universitat organises a Tirant lo Blanch continuous reading and will expose its incunabulum

  • Office of the Vice-Principal for Culture and Sport
  • November 18th, 2019
Poster of the initiative.
Poster of the initiative.

On 20th November, on the occasion of the Dia del Llibre Valencià (Valencian Book Day), the Historical Library of the Universitat de València is organising a continuous reading of the Tirant lo Blanch open to the public. The incunabulum printed in Valencia in 1490, which belongs to the Historical Library, will be on display throughout the day. Only three copies of this edition are preserved in the world.

In the year 2000, the Generalitat Valenciana (Valencian Government) instituted November 20th as the Dia del Llibre Valencià. On the same day, but in 1490, the first edition of the work Tirant lo Blanch by the Valencian author Joanot Martorell was published by Nicolau Spindeler's press, according to the postscript.

This book of chivalry, emblematic work of the golden century of Valencian literature, which was saved from the fire by Don Quixote, is considered to be the beginning of the modern European novel and constitutes the greatest Valencian contribution to universal literature. Narrates the adventures of weapons and love of its protagonist, Tirant, a hero who manages to liberate Constantinople from Turkish power, a knight more human than other knights, who suffers for the love of Carmesina.

Its plot, varied and rich in registers (from grave tone to humour, from cruelty to sensualism), allows for a pleasant and amusing reading that has stood the test of time.

To celebrate the Dia del Llibre Valencià, the Historical Library has organized the continuous reading of this magnificent work, which will take place in the Duc de Calàbria Room, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.. The act will begin with the musical interpretation of two pieces of the Llibre Roig by Patricia Garcia (viola) and Elia Casanova (voice). The reading will then be given by more of the 100 people that will participate.

During the day, the incunabulum that arrived at the Historical Library bequeathed by Giner de Perellós, Marqués de Dos Aguas, will be exhibited. This is one of the three original copies that are preserved in the world. The other two are in the British Library and the Hispanic Society of America.

To facilitate the conservation and consultation of this work and other heritage works, the Historical Library has available a free access digital library SOMNI. (

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