Library of Ephebe

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Second greatest library on the disc, second only to the Unseen University. The repository of all the wisdom and philosophy gathered and created by the Ephebians (works on logics, theology, social-economics, mathematics, and "natural philosophy" - i.e. inquiring in to the nature of how and why things are), it was anathema to and hence burned down on the orders of Deacon Vorbis during the Omnian invasion. Many priceless documents were lost forever. However, quite a few of the scrolls mysteriously turned up in the Library at UU... Has the Librarian (who is one of the Librarians of Time and Space ) been up to his old space-and-time tricks using the power of L-space, interfering with the nature of causality and appearing where perhaps he shouldn't, drawn by the irresistible lure of the written word?


This is a reference to the library of Alexandria which, in Alexandria, Egypt, seems to have been the largest and most significant great library of the ancient world. It flourished under the patronage of the Ptolemaic dynasty and functioned as a major center of scholarship from its construction in the third century BC until the Roman conquest of Egypt in 48 BC. After its destruction, scholars used a related library in the temple known as the Serapeum, located in another part of the city, founded on the collection of Pergamum, which was given by Mark Antony to Cleopatra. This library was described as the "daughter library" and was also a temple to the god Serapis.

The library was conceived and opened either during the reign of Ptolemy I Soter (323–283 BC) or during the reign of his son Ptolemy II (283–246 BC). Plutarch (46–120 AD) wrote that during his visit to Alexandria in 48 BC Julius Caesar accidentally burned the library down when he set fire to his own ships to frustrate Achillas' attempt to limit his ability to communicate by sea. Edward Gibbon describes how the daughter library was also destroyed by Theophilus, Bishop of Alexandria, who ordered the destruction of the Serapeum in 391.

If only we'd had an L-Space trained Librarian too! So much was lost, including descriptions of the mysterious lightsource of the Lighthouse of Pharos, and the lamps that seem to have used batteries (!!) at the Temple of Hathor at Denderah in ancient Egypt. Perhaps the dark ages may not have needed to be so dark were it not for the intolerance of the ignorant?