February 10, 2013
Alexandria’s Famous Library and its Destruction
Alexandria, Egypt once possessed the world’s greatest archive of knowledge, The Great Library of Alexandria. The library was founded by Alexander the Great in 300 BC. The library was built along with the Museum of Alexandria. The Museum was a place of study. It included lecture areas, gardens, a zoo, and of course the library. This Library was a public place where scholars spent their days. Over 100 scholars lived at the museum full time to perform research. It is estimated that the Library possessed well over one million documents from Assyria, Greece, Persia, Egypt, India and several other nations. The library's goal was to collect a half-million scrolls. King Ptolemy I made great strides to ensure that goal was met. The library held nearly 750,000 scrolls when it was burned 400 years after it was created.
The Library had advanced knowledge on space, electricity, and human biology. The precious knowledge the library contained, would have to be relearned about a thousand years later in human history. We will never know exactly how much knowledge the library contained. If the scholars would have kept researching who knows where we would be intellectually in today’s society.
So who burned the library? No one knows for sure, but many Egyptians accused Julius Caesar for destruction of the library. Caesar was pursuing Pompey (a military leader) into Egypt when he was suddenly cut off by an Egyptian navy at Alexandria. Greatly outnumbered and in enemy territory, Caesar ordered the ships in the harbor to be set on fire. The fire spread and destroyed the entire