The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek is one of the biggest and most important universal libraries worldwide. Its vaults accommodate some of the most precious and world-famous works of mankind’s written cultural heritage.

The app "Famous Books. Treasures of the Bavarian State Library” presents an exquisite selection of these holdings: 52 splendid manuscripts, unique incunabula and rare, precious printed works from the Occident and the Orient

Only very rarely can the public view the physical manifestations of these treasures in exhibitions. The brilliant, complete digital copies of the exhibits - formatted for presentation on iPad and iPhone - provide a fascinating insight into the treasures held by the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek.

Users can browse through and freely zoom into the manuscripts and printed works from the first to the last page. Among the exhibits are, for example, the manuscript A of the Nibelungenlied (The Song of the Nibelungs), the eight volumes of the Ottheinrich Bible, an edition of each the Gutenberg Bible and the World Chronicle of Hartmann Schedel, the Babylonian Talmud and Wolfram von Eschenbach’s epic poem Parzival.

What’s New

Version 2.5

Layout adjustments for iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR
Performance improvements
Minor Bugfixes

Ratings and Reviews

4.7 out of 5
29 Ratings

29 Ratings

Tigonie ,


If ever an app deserved its 5 stars, it's this one. While other similar apps charge much more for a few selected images of highlights in their collection, this app opens a generous portion of their collection to your own self-guided, hi-resolution tour. And what really sets this app apart is that you don't get to see just a couple of selected pages, you have access to the entire book, just as if you were actually in the library, looking at the artifact in person. Actually, you have better access to these treasures with this app than you would in person. Want to see and read an original Gutenberg Bible? Here it is, every chapter and verse of the original. This app offers a glimpse at the kind of visionary research tool the internet could-and should-be. Absolutely outstanding app.

Lara Rebooted ,

Gorgeous materials!

As someone with a great interest in Medieval literature, this collection is a wonderful treat. You have access to beautifully-rendered scans of every single page of many extremely old, delicate works that you would otherwise never even have a chance to see. I'm very impressed, and I hope that more rare book collections like this one become available in the future. It's any scholar's dream!

Darklon ,

Excellent app

Absolutely beautiful material. Thanks to the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek for sharing their treasures with those of us who cannot actually travel there to see these masterpieces in person. I hope other libraries will take the time to share their collections with the rest of the world. Also, I have an older iPod Touch and, other than a weird authorization glitch in iTunes, this app works fine on my iPod.


Bayerische Staatsbibliothek
256.6 MB

Requires iOS 10.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.


English, German

Age Rating
Infrequent/Mild Cartoon or Fantasy Violence


  • Family Sharing

    With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.

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