Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

Manuscripts and special funds

The Milan campus Library conserves several special collections of both ancient and modern printed books, manuscripts and documents.

For information on how to access the materials: Rules for consultation

For information on the most significant documents identified through the activities of reorganization and analyzes carried out by librarians: Bulletin "Tralecarte"


Articles from CATTOLICAnews (in Italian) about the preciousness into the special funds:

     > "Tralecarte" la dedica di Dumas (21/01/2014)

     > E 'l naufragar m'è dolce (18/02/2014)

     > Saba in cerca d'editore (19/03/2014)

     > Il placet autografo di Verri (21/05/2014)

     > Tralecarte, l'«aspro cammino» di Ada Negri (02/07/2014)




Modern funds


Piccoli-Addoli Fund

This fund was donated in July of 2013 by Paolo Biscottini and his brothers Valentina, Attilio and Umberto. It collects most of the large library and an important set of papers and literary documents belonging to the maternal branch of the family Biscottini. For the common desire of the donors and the UCSC Library, the fund was entitled "Piccoli-Addoli" to recall the different literary souls that compose it: Valentino Piccoli, his wife Pia Addoli and the son Fantasio Piccoli. However, there are documents belonging to other family members, but the most important part of the fund is made ​​up of these three illustrious figures. Valentino Piccoli (1892-1938), nephew of Pasquale Stanislao Mancini, Senator of the Italian Kingdom, was an important writer of the early twentieth century: Bachelor of Philosophy, occupied prestigious positions in the direction of national newspapers such as Il Piccolo di Trieste, Il mattino of Naples, Il giornale di Sicilia and wrote several works of criticism, analysis and dissemination of philosophical and was managing editor and then director (from 1923) of the Libri del giorno. He had personal relationships with many writers of the time, as evidenced by the inscriptions on the books in his personal library and the large collection of letters given at the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore. His wife Pia Addoli (1893-1958), graduated in Arts with a thesis on Boccaccio and Chaucer, was a writer of children's books and teacher, and collaborator of various cultural magazines of the time. Fantasio Piccoli (1917-1981), son of Valentine and Pia, a graduate in Law, was an artillery officer, wounded at Tobruk and from there taken prisoner. He participated in the Italian Resistance against the German army. He founded in 1947 the traveling theater company of Carrozzone, with which aimed to bring the great classics of the theater of all time in the Italian province devastated by war, confident in the power of culture. He was the founder of the Teatro Stabile di Bolzano and directed the Teatro San Babila in Milan. He contributed to today as a theater critic. Staged more than 130 directions of prose and thirty lyrics directions and translated various texts of Euripides, Plautus, Shakespeare, Shaw, Ibsen. This fund collects fed correspondence with several men of culture, original scripts and photographs of the scene. There is an ongoing work of the fund, at the end of which a inventory will be made available for consultation to scholars.



Liana Bortolon Fund

Born in Feltre in 1923, Liana Bortolon after high school he enrolled at the Faculty of Letters and Philosophy of the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in November 1941, graduating in February 1947, with Mario Apollonio. After a brief period as a secretary of Alfa Romeo, January 1949 was hired by the publisher Vita e Pensiero, where he had the opportunity to work for several years with Father Agostino Gemelli. Between 1957 and 1958 she wrote a column on the art magazine Gente, recently founded by Edilio Rusconi and, since 1958, he entered as an expert in the art magazine Grazia, whose pages he gave a his own column until the beginning of the Nineties. Liana Bortolon was able to play for more than thirty years a valuable militant work and pioneering investigation on contemporary art, an activity that made ​​it very popular among the readers who wrote hundreds of letters to get information and advice, to the point that the publisher had to create a special office to handle the mass of incoming correspondence. He also collaborated on EpocaAriadnePanoramaCasavivaDiner'sArteAd, and has published several books of criticism and dissemination of modern and contemporary art, some of which are translated abroad. Her work led her to visit galleries and museums and meet several important protagonists of Italian art and culture, but not only, like Giò Ponti, Marino Marini, Francesco Messina, Giacomo Manzù, Orfeo Tamburi, Roberto Longhi, Raffaele Carrieri, Man Ray and many others; these were meetings and associations of which his library, now at the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, is valuable evidence. He organized the exhibition Grazia Award in 1969 at the "Sala della Balla" in Castello Sforzesco in Milan and The great Sunday at the Rotonda di Via Besana in 1974, dedicated to the naif painters.
The numerous works of art belonging to his personal collection were donated to the Galleria d'arte moderna Carlo Rizzarda of Feltre, his hometown. The archival papers of Liana Bortolon are received by the UCSC Library together with the donation of the fund. The archive has undergone a reorganization with its first partial reconditioning of the cards, and is now made ​​up of 6 series divided into 8 folders that include letters, photographs, various work materials, notes and newspaper clippings. The correspondence consists of about 300 letters from various senders and about 150 letters of a personal nature and cover the time period 1947-2002.

Synthetic scheme of the fund:

               Series 1: Private correspondence * (1 folder)

               Series 2: Correspondence * (2 folders)

               Series 3: Personal papers (1 folder)

               Series 4: Professional cards (2 folders)

               Series 5: Press releases (1 folder)

               Series 6: Different materials (1 folder)



* The correspondence consists of about 300 letters from various senders and about 150 letters of a personal nature.



Roberto Busa Fund

Father Roberto Busa (Vicenza 1913-Gallarate 2011), Jesuit pioneer of computational linguistics and creator of Index Thomisticus, donated in 2010 its library and its working papers that are today a extremely relevant collection to reconstruct both the activity of the scholar since the emergence of the discipline computer science applied to linguistics. The library collection consists of about 2.500 books and pamphlets, while the personal archive is a strong rich documentation of thousands of documents that pass through the entire second half of the last century. Between these papers appear reports of meetings, correspondence with leading figures in the international culture, documentation on the various activities of the scholar. The fund has already been fully cataloged and is available for consultation, and largely retains the structure given by Father Busa. However, it is studying a project to manage, especially relating to miscellaneous papers, which intends to comply as much as possible the original organizational structure in order to make this remarkable fund more easily usable.

More info (in Italian):

     > Il tesoro di padre Busa in Cattolica (CattolicaNews 11/11/2010)




Wolfgang Hildesheimer Fund

Owned by the Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana, thanks to an agreement with the Università Cattolica the library collection of Wolfgang Hildesheimer (1916-1991)  has been received in the spring of 2016 from the Milan campus Library, which handled a full intervention of electronic cataloging and relocation at Largo Gemelli. It consists of about 5,000 volumes documenting the interests and activities of the German writer and painter of Jewish origin, preserving all printed works, translations, texts and prefaces written by him. They have collected the volumes sent to Hildesheimer by important German, Swiss and Italian writers and artists of the Twentieth century, on most of which was penned a sending autograph. They are also preserved many art books or art editions.

Processing of the fund was completed in conjunction with the Hildesheimer's birth centenary, to celebrate which the Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana hosted in December 2016 an international conference.


For more information (in Italian):

     > Fund Wolfgang Hildesheimer's inventory




Various funds

A complex of various folders, each of which has been entitled to the person from which: Guido Aceti, Biondo Biondi, Gustavo Bontadini, Aristide Calderini, Camillo Cessi, Guglielmo Guariglia, Ferdinando Ormea, Francesco Vito, Vittore Pisani, Camillo Brezzo, Nino Toja. Carte Luigi Alfonsi, Fondo Baglio, Carte Giorgio Falco, Carte Fassetta, Carte Quirino Fiorini, Carte Carlo Maria Galanti, Carte Antonio Gasparetti, Carte Carlo Locatelli, Fondo Melzi d'Eril, Carte Enrico Piccione, Fondo Pulciano, Fondo Sabbadini Muzzioli, Carte Mario Silvestri, Carte Giovanni Tarditi, Carte Nicola Turchi.





Family archives with medieval documents

The Fogliani Sforza Pallavicini Archive (containing more than 200 pages with material of a patrimonial and administrative, dated between the Thirteenth and the Nineteenth century), the Calcagni Archive (collected in 6 folders, consisting of account books, wills, documents and personal assets, various manuscripts: all material dating between the Fifteenth and the Seventeenth century), the Grossi Archive (3 folders with original scrolls from the Fifteenth century).



Oblate Fathers of Rho Miscellaneous Fund

Consisting of over 400 volumes bound together printed books and manuscripts, mostly from the Seventeenth, Eighteenth and Nineteenth centuries, mainly theological and historical argument.



Università Cattolica Manuscripts Fund

Divided into series of open codes, documents and fragments from disparate: Oriental manuscripts (10 pieces in different languages ​​back to the Sixteenth centuries), Università Cattolica manuscripts (over 150 pieces  from the Fourteenth to the Twentieth century), annotated (books printing with important manuscript annotations), loose fragments of codes and literary texts, from the Eleventh to the Seventeenth century, instrumenta (one hundred loose documents from 1209 to the Nineteenth century).
Scientific contributions (in Italian) on the manuscripts preserved in the UCSC Library: